Monday, December 26, 2011

A Wonderful Holiday

Me on Christmas Eve wearing the paper crown from my Christmas cracker.
 Christmas has come and it has been great.  We had Christmas Eve dinner and I spent the night at my sister and brother inlaw's home. Dinner was delicious. We had many wonderful things to choose from. After dinner I went to evening mass at All Saints Episcopal. The service was beautiful. My favorite part is at  the end when the lights are dimmed, except for the candles, and everyone sings Silent Night.
 The entrance to my sister's home.
 After church I came back to my sister's home and I played video games with my nephews. The youngest two put food out for the reindeer on the porch and then we gathered in the den where they took turns reading The Night Before Christmas, another family tradition.
The dining room before dinner.
 We played more video games, and finally before going to bed they put milk and cookies out for Santa.
 In the morning. when we went downstairs Santa had been there. There were presents for everyone even the dogs. Everyone was very pleased with their presents including the dogs.
Bandit in the den by the tree.
 After opening presents and having breakfast I went home to my house for a bit and then went to my parents home in the country where my family gathered for an early Christmas dinner. We played games and had lots of wonderful things to eat. It was a very pleasant evening.
My Dad and Mom with two of the dogs.
 Eventually my sister's family left and then I left to go home. But, when I got home the evening was still not too late so I decided to drive around and see the Christmas lights before ending my day.

Luther Lake
 One of my favorite places to see the lights is on the small neighborhood lake, Luther Lake, where we have gone to look at lights since I was a child. The reflections always look so pretty on the lake.
TCU Christmas lights.
 This year in addition to the snowmen, Santas and reindeerquite a few houses had purple horned frogs.
This house always has the nicest lights.
 The lights were very nice this year. It was a relaxing way to end the day, driving around looking at the lights  and listening to Christmas music.
A photo of a lion I took at the zoo.
 One of my greatest presents I received this year was one I bought for myself, a membership to our zoo. I will use it to go out and sketch, sculpt and paint. The weather today was cool and damp but I decided to go to the zoo anyway and sketch. The animals were fairly active and I got some great photos as well as some very rapid animal drawings. That is not much in the way of art but it is all I have been able to do in the last few days.
Some sketches I did at the zoo today.


  1. Your Christmas sounds wonderful! I love all your photos, especially the first one! You have a fantastic smile. Christmas continues at our house with more family arriving. It will be another week of celebration. :-)

  2. I love hearing all about your day! Love too the zoo drawings, my daughter uses her zoo membership (which was a gift) all the time. Next time I go with her and my grandchildren, I will bring my sketchbook!

  3. What a wonderful, captivating Christmas! I think your membership sounds like so much fun!! The very best to you in the NEW YEAR!!!!!

  4. Your Christmas celebrations sound like a lot of family fun. I like the zoo sketches and can't wait to see new animal art.

  5. A belated Merry Christmas Douglas... from The Paint Box Gallery in Snowy Hillsdale!

    It was indeed interesting to read through the entries to see how much enjoyment that "You" gained from your own Texan Christmas rituals!

    Strangely... or maybe not... our rituals intersect... even run in parallel for the most part! Family is the essential core... lights ... games and good food go hand in hand with that!

    We even share the Carravaggio and Friends common denominator we too enjoyed that with my daughter Allison at The National Gallery in Ottawa back in October!

    Loved your quick zoo renderings... very natural and elogent!

    All the best to You in 2012 Douglas! Do keep in touch!

    Good Painting!
    Warmest regards,

  6. Oh Doug!! thank you so much for sharing these wonderful photos with us!! Beautiful Christmas lights to end one's day!!! Life is good!!!!