Along with the countdown to Christmas comes days and evenings so full of preparation for the 25th, that you can't help but be engulfed into the spirit of the holiday, your heart growing 3 sizes that day, and all that.
Last night was the "official" lighting of the Oklahoma State University campus.
It was a magical night. It wasn't warm, but it wasn't cold. The kids were full of sparkling eyes of anticipation at the hot cocoa bar and cookies.
One of the staples of the university is the Edmon Low Library. It's tower rings tunes all day, scurrying students to their classes, and marking the hours past with alma mater tones or holiday bells.
It was already beautiful before the lighting. It always is.
The kids were given orange glow necklaces, and they absolutely adored playing frisbee with their daddy on the library lawn as folks from all over town slowly trickled in.
Frosty and Rudolph were wandering around, handing out orange striped candy canes and big, furry hugs.
There were singers from a local elementary school, the high school, the college, and even a brass ensemble. There's something magic about a cool, dark night, Christmas songs playing, and people engaging in conversation not amid iphones and computers.
A couple we love showed up right before the countdown.
We all joined in, counting backwards, as all the little ones starred upward at the tower.
When we got to zero, the campus lit up like God himself had just turned the stars on in our great big sky.
(except, of course, they were orange!)
Doesn't Em look a little bit too grown up here?
Now the cold front has began to move in, and the birds are hurriedly taking the seeds in the feeders, and the squirrels are running around like mad looking for anything left. I dare say, this must be winter.