It's so warm, this year! So warm that it doesn't feel like a Vermont December - it feels just like Christmas in California, where I grew up! It's been raining, today, too, and it's funny how little things like that can spur memories and old, old feelings that we may have not thought or felt in a very long time. I was listening to a favorite CD (celtic harp) and stringing white lights on my ridiculously fat Christmas tree and felt like I was back in high school - and very cheery and light, at that!
It made me think of so many things.... especially times spent during the holidays with my mom and my sister (and Betty! :) ) It took me right back to special and very magical traditions and adventures that we would have every year.
The memory that came most strongly to me, though, was the night that our family drove home in the rain from the Christmas Eve candlelit service at our church. That year, at midnight, our local public radio station was broadcasting live the church bells pealing in Europe where it was Christmas morning. We just don't have bells like that, here, in the States. I had never ever heard anything so thrilling and joyous and heart burstingly happy. It was quite magic!!!! I had never realized before but knew, then, why there are so many carols that mention them!!
There's just something about the sound of bells - gargantuan ones or small sleigh bells - that makes a heart glad!
So! My word for the day is JOY!
Well! The big, lone church bell that I have access to is down in town and too much bother to get to; so, instead, I took pictures of a church with a bell tower and you can imagine the rest! ;)
One other thing! In high school, I was in a hand bell choir at my church! An amazing experience!
Do you know the Raleigh Ringers? If you're taking a break or have time or just want a little Christmas beauty, here's a Christmas concert of theirs. My favorite song is at 4:36ish. Oh! DO listen!!! Even if it's just to the beginning of 4:36ish - get a bit of ringing bells into your heart! :)
(45:15 is the other one of my absolute favorites!!! ;))
P.S. If you've never heard church bells pealing before, here's a funny little video of the Bells Of Dublin that has good sound and gives the general idea. ;)