Because Christmas falls on a Monday this year, that means Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday, and it just happens to fall on the fourth Sunday of the month - the same Sunday on which the recorder group traditionally plays. I asked the rest of the group, and talked to the minister to see if there was a better time to play, but it appeared that Christmas Eve was still the best option, especially since all the other Sundays of the month were taken with things like the cantata and the pageant. So I worked up an arrangement of "He Is Born" and figured that we would all practice directly before the service, then play, and then I would duck out directly after we were done so we could continue on with the rest of our regularly scheduled Christmas Eve festivities.
However, Richard somehow thought I was acting as the full accompanist for Christmas Eve, and agreed to be liturgist, meaning we would have to be there the full service, and not be able to get down to his parents' house until another hour and a half later, to the great consternation of everyone involved. So yesterday while we were wandering the zoo I got ahold of my knitting mom, who is also in the recorder group, and she graciously agreed to act as substitute liturgist. Phew.
The recorder group sounded wonderful, and I was pretty pleased with how my first ever song arrangement worked out (usually I just transcribe music directly from the hymnal into the appropriate parts, but this time I did a few things extra, including writing in a descant). It was even more fun because my little sister decided to play with us, and she picked up the alto recorder - after not playing it for who knows how many years, and managed to do an amazing job with the part.
As soon as we were done playing I dashed out (quietly and unobtrusively, of course) and zipped home to pick up Richard, who had remained at home to finish getting all our stuff together. He met me at the door with a box full of all the presents we were taking, and then we were off to his parents' house for the day.
There was the usual decorating of sugar cookies, turning the normal holiday shapes into bizarre and colorful creatures. Lunch was buffet style, since the rest of the family had to come and go at different times throughout the afternoon. We opened presents and emptied stockings and played with dogs and cat, but mostly, we just relaxed and enjoyed each others' company.
My little sister and I were supposed to sing a duet for the 11pm service, but she's been sick, and had pretty much no voice by the time I got home, so I sang it as a solo instead, and have thus ended this year singing as a tenor, alto, and now soprano. The only reason I will likely never complete the set is because my voice simply refuses to budge low enough to sing bass.
Tis the season for Holidailies