Today was our annual after-school Christmas caroling party. The children had a half-day of school and after that they came home with some of their friends for a little Christmas fun.
First the nine children (ranging in age from 7 to 11) practiced singing the songs from the song sheets I gave them. All pretty standard Christmas songs. We decided that their rendition needed too much work to be sung in public, and we'd leave that off the rotation when we were out.
After going through all the songs - they bundled up - and we headed into the dreary December afternoon. We sang at a total of six houses. We tried a few others - but people weren't home. And after that the kids were getting cold so we came back for hot chocolate.
The best part of this though - is the smiles it brings to people. When one of our neighbors opens their door on a busy afternoon to find a gaggle of kids standing out there singing to them - they smile. Big smiles. I like that.
Sometimes the people we sing for want to give the children something. Today they got some candy and some money. In the past they've also gotten Christmas cookies right out of the oven (it's all in the timing). With a little prompting the children have agreed that the money will go in the poor box at church - to help people who don't have as much as they do.
I guess you could say we did our part to spread some Christmas cheer today.