Sunday, December 16, 2007


The Christmas party was fun -- even though the family was dressed like goobs.

Dane and Aubrey were in jammies my mom made them last year (the jammies aren't gooby -- just wearing them to a party was), with ornaments strung around their necks. Mick and I wore our matching jammy pants and these awful white sweatshirts from our Long's, our drugstore across the street: Mick's had I 'heart' 'picture of Santa' (I love Santa) in sparkles on it and mine was a line of snowpeople.

Of course, the kids thought the sweathshirts were cool, so when our family won the "Ugly Sweater Contest," which can also translate into "The Only Family Who Showed Up Completely Decked Out," we told the kids our sweaters were indeed cute, not ugly.

Our favorite part of the night was when Aaron -- a former Cleveland Institute of Music student, now almost a dentist -- played his cello as background music. First Dane just sat up on the stage steps next to Aaron. He listened like that for a good 20 minutes, mesmerized, while everyone else at the party mingled and ate. Aubrey joined him later and sat for another 10 minutes with them the same way.

Aaron eventually asked them if they wanted him to play Christmas carols, so he played Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer... The kids sat there quietly mouthing the words. After a while, Aubrey and I went to get food, but Dane stayed on. While we were dishing up our mashed potatoes and string beans, someone leaned over and said to me, "Don't look now, but guess who's about to sing." I slowly turned around and there was Dane at the microphone in his jammies singing "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" while Aaron accompanied on the cello. He sang the entire song, very sincerely and on some of the same notes as Aaron's cello. He got a huge round of applause when he was finished.

Later, he told us he was "kind of embarassed" to sing up there in front of everybody, but it was his favorite part of the night. I told him those are the normal feelings people have when they perform, and he could just let his body and mind get used to that. It's also what makes performing exciting and fun.

Aubrey danced later in a corner while people mingled, practicing her ballet spins and twirls.

The kids thought the White Elephant gift exchange was a blast. Aubrey came away with a huge bag of Ghiradelli Chocolates, Dane got a battery-operated monster truck (Mick's big friend Josh stepped forward at that point and yelled out "Anyone who takes that gift has to answer to me first!" -- very cute), Mick got a bag with chocolates, a bottle of beer and a cookie, and I got a huge box of toothpaste. ha ha.


Anonymous said...

The music of the cello is some of my most favorite music. Dane and Aubrey have such good taste. Wish we could have listened to Dane's song. We're looking forward to hearing him sing when we get together after Christmas.

Grand Dad

Anonymous said...


You guys sure look 'PERTY'!!!!

love ya most. kp

Anonymous said...

Grandad said it for me. He loves cello being performed - beautiful sounds. I enjoy it too. I also love flute music.
We'll be seeing you soon!!!
Grammy, Mom, JJJ
Great Jammy outfits. Where was the party?

SFNielsens said...

That is so sweet that Dane was so enthralled with the music. So bummed we missed his performance. Matthew didn't know anything about the party or we would have been there putting up a good fight for your prize.