and FINALLY. we got to christmas.
wednesday was a flurry of events. my parents flew in from korea, my cousin lois flew in from atlanta, my other cousin joe flew in from chicago, my sister and paul drove down from new york, my other sister eunice and val made their way from d.c. ken, sloane and i likewise packed up all the things - our luggage for two days, presents, snacks, and sticky buns from dal-kohm - and headed north to maryland.
here are the snippets i was able to capture with my phones. i'll be posting a few more photos i took with my big camera, a little later.
we met at northwest community church in d.c. for a candlelight service, and it was such a lovely experience. my heart was buoyed by the intimate church setting, the earnest christmas hymns, the adorable telling of the christmas story by australian kids, and the pastor's reflections on christmas using music to illustrate the story in a new way.
it also felt marvelous, greeting each of my family members as they came in, amazed to find us all together, sitting in two pews. we made it! to the end of the year, to the holidays, to one location.
afterwards, we walked over to my sister's apartment and took this picture to commemorate. eleven of us! all together!
christmas eve also happened to be the last night of hanukkah, and paul said a prayer and we had a moment of lighting the candles. it was beautiful.
it felt so good, piling up on our parent's bed, like we were kids again.
christmas morning breakfasting!
we have been doing a secret santa christmas exchange with our family the past couple of years, but this year was special because sloane was old enough to be excited about the presents, and about helping hand them out to everyone. i was so proud of how happy she was for everyone else.
there she is, delivering presents.
i am always so thankful that these two travel all the way from korea to spend time with us.
we elected to have christmas day dinner at a family-style italian restaurant called buca di beppo. the food and the electic decor made the night feel cozy and festive.
i'm so glad i got to spend the past few days with this bunch. hope you all had a wonderful holiday, too!