Our Christmas Eve service this year was a memorable one.
The whole service is kid-friendly, kid-centered and featured our incredibly talented high school-aged Praise Band as musicians. We sang traditional hymns, including O Little Town of Bethlehem, which I especially love because I have lived most of my life in the Town of Bethlehem, and the Praise Band treated us to two songs that they chose and sang so beautifully I started crying. It was like the Nutcracker all over again. Sigh.
The kids' choir sang, and one of the songs they performed was written by Michaela, our godson Aidan, and Sara, a dear family friend. They did a great job writing it and we were really proud of them.
I happened to grab my camera on our way out the door to the service and am so glad I did: I love these pictures from that special evening.
Pastor Mark getting ready to start
During the sermon- all the kids were invited up onto the altar
Pastor Mark delivers his sermon on light
O Holy Night
This is the best shot I could get of Alec holding a lit candle while making sure he didn't burn the whole church down
After the service I was able to grab Michaela and have her pose with the poinsettias
Several side notes about the evening:
1. The church service was at 4pm. The Libuttis started getting ready at 1:30pm. I can't decide if that's impressive or pathetic.
2. All the kids had coordinated- not matching!! per Michaela's request- outfits from Gymboree. I loved them.
3. Alec was also supposed to wearing a red chunky sweater over his shirt. And a pair of black big boy loafers. Neither were deemed wearable by Mr. Alec.
4. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but Michaela had her hair pulled back tightly and I curled and pinned it into a bun placed right below her left ear. At one point in the afternoon, I felt like we were getting ready for the Oscars. She looked gore-geous. And Jenna looked as sweet as can be with her plaid dress and her hair pulled up in a half french braid.
5. Speaking of which, you know on the red carpet, the stars all look dazzling, and there is always a slightly schleppy person behind them, directing them on who to talk to and where to go? My girls were the stars; I was the schlepp. But I am more than happy to pour all my efforts into them.
6. After the service, we drove to a nearby street that sets candle luminaries along the sides of the road all up and and down the road. It's so pretty and we have admired it every year on Christmas Eve since I was a kid. It's a nice tradition that I shared with Dan and now share with our kids. I'm always grateful to the residents of the street who go to the trouble of setting it up each year.