I’ll be home for Christmas. That song always makes me tear up a little bit. The past couple of years I’ve been avoiding that song like the plague while I spent the holidays in Ecuador, Australia and England. I just couldn’t take it. This year however I am blasting carols and singing along like a crazy person. I can’t stop grinning, I’m SO happy to be home for the holidays.
As it turns out there are cultural advantages to being in Washington DC for Christmas that I never fully realized. Maybe it’s the newfound joy of being home, or the fact that Michael is here in DC with me, but I’ve made some discoveries. In addition to tree decorating, present wrapping and cookie baking I’ve also gotten to participate in two major local events: The Scottish Christmas Walk in Alexandria and the White House Christmas Tree Lighting.
The Scottish Christmas Walk
The Scottish Christmas Walk takes place in Old Town, Alexandria, George Washington’s old hometown. It’s been going on for 20-some years and is a celebration of scottish heritage – picture clan after clan of Scots marching in full regalia, bagpipes blaring. At the end of the parade is Santa!
This year I got to march because as it turns out- I’m actually quite Scottish! My Dad (who is big on geneaology) is the DC commisioner of Clan Donald, the biggest Clan in the US. He invited Mike (soon to be Scottish by marriage) and I to come march in the parade and it sounded too unique to pass up.
I’m glad we did, and not just because I got to see Mike in a kilt (he looked quite fetching).
The day culminated with a Clan dinner involving much whiskey imbibing (Scottish gravy my Dad calls it) and a lovely haggis. Yes, I love haggis, why don’t you?
The White House Christmas Tree Lighting
Every year since 1923 there has been a ceremonial christmas tree lighting outside the white house with the president’s family. Despite growing up in DC I had never been. This year a friend got us tickets and I’m so glad because the host was none other then my number 1 celebrity crush Neil Patrick Harris!
The event was freezing but we managed to squeeze up close enough to see NPH in his bright red scarf, along with musical guests like Jason Mraz and James Taylor.
And of course, the beautiful first family.
It was cold as the North Pole but so much fun!