What’s the point of writing a blog? What’s the point of MY blog? I write to journal, to reflect on the day, on my life. Today as I tap briefly into FaceBook I realize I will first write in my blog before posting our Christmas photo. Yes we came together for Christmas Eve. We even posted (I even posted) another photo to FaceBook,

home alone

Tree and us

just the two of us in front of the Christmas tree. It was our family pre-Christmas photo. Now we are just the two of us. The kids asked, what are we doing for Christmas, as if there was any question! Of course everyone is coming here to us and I’ll make the fish and potato salad for Christmas Eve* and the turkey for Christmas day, just like every year. And yes, the boys will go to the Hofburg on Christmas Day in the morning and then come “home” to us for Christmas dinner together.
As I have written, so it was done.

I was surprised to have my precious sons, offer to help, to come early, actually asking what can they do, what can they bring.
This year I suggested to Josef that we put the tree up early. Afterall there are no kids in the house with us anymore to surprise with the tree on Christmas Eve. So when they offered to help I thought they could come and help decorate the tree, as was our custom in the past. I had bought chocolates to hang on the tree. So when they arrived early I suggested they hang them up. The comments that come now as the children are “grown-up” and they confess their transgressions: “we ate more than we hung on the tree”, “no need to hang them up, we can eat them like that”. Oh the joys of Christmas. Oh the joys of family.
This year the turkey was bigger than ever before. This year I was actually ready early, even before they all arrived! The baking in the gas oven was I guess a bit faster than the usual electric oven of the past years. This year seems everyone was happy to sing along. The guitar was a great idea. Amazing how Andi has taught himself and played along for us to sing together. Sure we can do better with preparing the texts next time. Maybe I could even ask everyone to bring something? But no, this was my offering to the family. I enjoy cooking the Christmas meals. Of course as I am still working there is always that little bit of stress, will there be enough bread crumbs for the stuffing? Will we have any oats in the house? I really enjoyed our Christmas together. It was our Secret Santa Christmas this year. So the family photo represents each one of us, including the secret Santa from Down Under, whose gift is displayed in his absence. The joint efforts to set the table, prepare the house, the electronic fireplace. Thank you everyone. It was a Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas everyone. And thanks for letting me post the photo.
*Christmas Eve* Here I had to think of my mother and how all the family is coming to her on Christmas Eve Down Under. In fact, I even managed to call up on Christmas Eve in the morning, our time in Vienna, Austria, when Josef went out shopping. They were already celebrating in Melbourne, Australia. I messaged Christoph and he replied they were still in church. As soon as Mum arrived home, he let me know and we connected. She was so happy, it was so beautiful, the children in the church, the family all there. Christoph flashed the phone around and I could greet the family, nephews, newly married niece, sisters-in-law, brothers, grandnephew.
One world family, celebrating a hemisphere apart, ten hours in time, thirty degrees in temperature and connected in heart and technology.