Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas, Sissel, and MoTab

We arrived at D&J's on Christmas Eve. We stopped at a corner antique store on the way in and bought a few children's books for Junior. Pete's Dragon, The Secret of Nymh, and Peter Cottontail were among the titles we finally decided on, although there were many other good ones. I put back Puss in Boots - I think I only picked it up because I like Puss in Boots in the Shrek movies. I don't even know the original story.

Dinner at the Melting Pot was delicious, although I am sure it was far more frustrating for me than for Dan, Julee, and Mari. My batter kept falling off, my ravioli stuck to the bottom of the pot, the pot was crowded with all these stick-things, and all the main courses were oily, probably due to the fact that we were cooking them in oil.

But the food was still delicious, and the cheese and chocolate dips were heavenly.

Christmas Day arrived pleasantly. Mari was already up and Dan was hammering away at something downstairs (rocking chairs on the front porch). We took some pictures and opened our presents. We ate a delicious breakfast of homemade biscuits, gravy, and other stuff, and after presents, Dan and I watched the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas performances from the last few years.

Renee Fleming's voice was beautiful. Audra McDonald's was rich and deep with feeling. But the one that blew us away, that I wanted to listen to over and over, and that gave me chills was Sissel. When she opened with In the Bleak Midwinter, our eyes were riveted on the TV screen. Her voice was so clear and so solid - it was breathtaking. Her next Norwegian numbers were equally beautiful, if not more so. We sat mesmerized, spellbound, each time she sang. Her voice floated and danced on top of the rich and deep currents of music sung by the choir. I was amazed at the size of the choir and its precision, and I was blown away by the way Sissel's clear and perfect voice complemented the richness of the choir.

Honestly, I do not think I have ever heard such a beautiful voice, or such a beautiful combination. It's no wonder the CD is #1 on Billboard's classical chart and has been nominated for 2 Grammy's. FYI, although you may not know who she is, you have definitely heard Sissel before, since she sang some of the haunting numbers in Titanic.

Well, after watching some MoTab, we ate a delicious lunch.

We watched A Christmas Story and relaxed for a while. Then we watched a few SNL Christmas skits, and although they were funny, I think they detracted from the beautiful Christmas I had enjoyed to that point.

We talked a lot, and towards the end of the day, we pulled out the Thanksgiving puzzle. We made some good progress, and hated to leave, but work calls...

What a great Christmas! Next year, it won't be quite so quiet since both of our families will be slightly larger.

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