Not long after January 6 (Epiphany) we packed away the Christmas tree, the nativity sets and all the trimmings. I forgot to post some of our new decorations given to us by some US friends as parting gifts. We were to open the presents just before Christmas so they could be used. Faithfully we opened them on the day before Christmas and all went "Ooooh!" and "Ahhh" as each ornament was unwrapped. The top set of hand carved wooden ornaments was from Grandma B - a feisty New York lady whose company we thoroughly enjoyed.
As they were reasonably hardy they were able to be lower on the tree without too much protective stress.
The next set was from Mr and Mrs W, a delightful couple who played the organ and organised the choir. There is also one for each of us, the birds being Lana and I, the snowmen for the boys and the angels for the girls. Being glass they were definitely higher up the tree!
Mr and Mrs W also dedicated quite a bit of time to teaching the Children's Choir. Although the children only sang at four or five Masses during the year, practice was held every Sunday after the 11:00 Mass during school months. The children discovered that they could sing with the right encouragement and the collection of hymns were practically all beautiful classic hymns in a variety of languages.
When we were organising the hymns to sing for Christmas Carols here, Ariel and Eric mentioned the hymns they knew and the Mother organising the group clapped her hands in delight and included those hymns. They sang Silent Night in German and a few others.
Now they are all packed away, awaiting next Christmas to come out again and remind us of our US friends.