24 days, starting on December 25th, celebrating with my in-laws, opening gifts, 12 days of Christmas then, January 7th is when we really celebrate the Nativity of Christ and break the fast, 12 days of joyful feasting follow!
My parents gave the girls each a Lands' End dress on St. Nicholas day, which was last week for us!
I thought this was so beautifully written by Elizabeth:
"On Sunday, old calendar, we remember St. Herman of Alaska and blessed Lucia, saint of Light. I don't think it is coincidental that they are celebrated near the darkest time of the year... at a time when those of us in the northern countries are longing, longing for a bit of light, they shine out with the uncreated Light of Christ. St. Herman has brought much comfort to me this winter as I have fought the depression that comes with darkness... it is as if I can see him in his frozen Alaskan cave, still, light and angelic music pouring forth. His presence in Alaska is very real.
St. Herman: http://www.holytrinityorthodox.com/calendar/los/December/13-05.htm
St. Lucy: http://www.holytrinityorthodox.com/calendar/los/December/13-06.htm"