Thursday, December 18, 2008

Friday Five: Countdown to Christmas Edition


I'm hyperventilating because of Songbird's Friday Five, which puts me in a confessional mood (I begin to meditate on all of the things I have "done, and all the things I have left undone.") Today Songbird reminds us that there are only five full days before Christmas Day, and whether you use them for shopping, wrapping, preaching, worshiping, singing or traveling or even wishing the whole darn thing were over last Tuesday, there's a good chance they will be busy ones.

So without further ado: here are five things I need to accomplish before Christmas Eve.

1. I need to write three sermons. (just like Mompriest!) Christmas eve at three can be short, but Christmas Day needs to be "full-size", and my current problem is that I am experiencing writer's block over our theme word for Sunday: "Participate." Fine word. But somehow, it doesn't seem exciting to me. Know what I'd like? "God, interrupted" --- or something like that.

2. I need to buy 2 presents still (I think only two?), and a birthday present for my neice, whose birthday is the 23rd of December. I pretty much still need to wrap everything.

3. I need to get the ingredients for the side dishes and desserts I am making for Christmas Day (my mom is bringing the turkey this year, God bless her.)

4. I need to figure out what "low key" thing we are going to do between the services on Christmas eve. Any suggestions?

5. I need to finish decorating the tree and cleaning the house, as much as possible, anyway.

Which brings me to my very own bonus story: Imagine the scene. It is Christmas Eve. The tree lights are on, the food is cooking, the family is all gathering in the living room. It's beautful and peaceful until I realize that it is 6:00 and the stores are all closed and I HAVEN'T BOUGHT MY CHRISTMAS PRESENTS. There's nothing I can do! It's too late!

Then I wake up. --

Merry Christmas! Ready or not, He comes.

22 comments:

Rev Kim said...

Hmm, don't have any great ideas for something for Christmas Eve. I always worry about that "low-key" thing between Christmas Eve services, because I'm afraid I will fall asleep! I feel like I need to keep my energy up, otherwise I'll crash! After one Christmas Eve service, one of my beloved parishioners said "you looked tired at the second service." She wasn't being negative, but sympathetic. I wanted to say, "because I'm usually asleep by 11:00!"

Have a Merry Christmas!

Rev SS said...

love the bonus story ... ready or not, indeed! Blessings on the sermon writing.

1-4 Grace said...

You can always find a wally world or a conveince store open on christmas.
No worries over the dream.
Hope you get it done and have a good holiday!

Certified Healing Coach said...

I suggest watching Christmas movies during the downtime.

Hope you get it all done and peacefully!

Processing Counselor said...

How about Scrabble for the downtime. For that dream? There's always the penny jar-start wrapping!

QuakerPastor said...

You go girl!!
good play--QP

Margaret said...

And that's when you begin to go through the cupboard and decide whether to give your kids tuna or green beans! Food makes great presents. Perhaps wrapping all the side items and inviting the recipients to make that part of dinner?
Glad it was only a dream, though.

DogBlogger said...

Hmm... low-key... I think I'd vote for the board game idea.

Magdalene6127 said...

I so love and appreciate your last line: ready or not, He comes. Indeed! And Amen. And thank God.

LawAndGospel said...

Ready or not, He comes- gives me hope that even if/when all those other things do or do not happen, there is good news indeed. Low- key- just don't do what happened one year in my home parish- the pastors decided to meet for lite eats and a glass of wine- the assistant did not notice that her half a glass was being topped off. It hit part way through the late service that there had been that extra glass's worth.

RevDrKate said...

Whew! Indeed I can see the hyperventilating. Wish I could come be your elf! Perhaps powernapping between services would be in order. Seriously, like the board game idea, probably sans spirits, tho.

the reverend mommy said...

Personally, I'm sweating the cleaning and cooking more than the sermons and bulletins....

Songbird said...

We're coming home to eat lasagna and oreo pie (made earlier in the day) and read aloud from "A Christmas Carol." Or if that feels too highbrow, maybe we'll watch "A Muppet Christmas Carol," a family favorite.

Mary Beth said...

Our Daughters of the King chapter has a major service project on Christmas eve: we prepare a large buffet and relaxing comfortable atmosphere (couches in the youth room) for the choirs and the clergy and altar party. That keeps folks from ... ahem ... going out for a little drink ... and especially if the weather is bad, that's a real boon!

Of course it's a matter of getting someone to DO that, but it is such a glorious gift (as a chorister I know this, and as a member of DOK I love doing it).

Auntie Knickers said...

Oh, Diane, haven't you seen the little things from Alternatives for Simple Living that say "Buy me nothing, I'll still love you"? You know what? It's true! I love giving presents, but I know that if I couldn't, my family would still love me, and I'm sure yours would too. And then -- there's always the After-Christmas Sales! Best of luck with the sermons.

Diane said...

luckily, although my dream recurs, I haven't had it this year YET....

thanks for all of the suggestions! The main idea is for me not to try to make a meal on Christmas eve.

I've always tried to host between the services, which is stressful, but can be done. But I'm having people (some people) on Christmas Day, so I didn't want to try to do two things.... in two days, plus sermons...

Rev. Pink Dragon said...

I LOVE the word "participate" for this Sunday! (I don't know what you actually have to do, but...) I envision Mary's participation with God and Joseph in the Gospel text for this week; Elizabeth's participation with Mary in proclaiming blessing, joy & justice; and our participation with Emmanuel for all of the above in our time and place.

I hope you've been able to engage it :). Peace.

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

low key... read a holiday novel; watch a movie; take a nap... hug scout.

Diane said...

Pink Dragon -- The idea behind participate I can get into, but all of the sermon title ideas with "participate" in them seemed flat, not the concept. I finally scratched the word and went with "The Third Miracle". And of course, you will have to be there, but there will be participation....

zorra said...

Read something light..or the board game idea is nice. Play your favorite Christmas music, too.

Breathe.

Again.

Re: gifts, you know what? I always am glad to receive gift cards, so I can take advantage of the after-Christmas sales. Not romantic, perhaps, but it works for me, and maybe for some of your loved ones too.

Ruth said...

I hope you do God, Interrupted. I love that idea. It captures the sense of surprise inherent in the story, which has been beaten out of it by over-familiarity (well, over-familiarity with the condensed sanitized version that fits in our nativity sets!) Whatever you do, God will use your words, it's obvious!

Lindy said...

Good luck with all that Diane.

For a downtime activity I'd just hang out with Scout.