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The year the metal band played Christmas

Back in the day,
which I think was on a Saturday...
there was a concert in a bar in the SF bay area.

Christmas bed with presents

It was December and it was cold and rainy outside
 but inside that old crusty bar 
in a not so great part of town-
 it felt like the heater was on full blast.

There was nervous excitement and sounds of instruments being tuned. 
Cymbals clinking and the drum beating steadily while the bass guitar sent 
deep sound check vibrations through the room.

There were 4 of them.
All in black t-shirts, worn denim jeans and black chucks.
 With long hair and serious faces- 
you might be afraid to run into them in a dark alley...

 but the truth was, 
they were soft hearted behind that gruff facade.

Christmas vignette with flowers

We were big supporters of the band and them trying to make their way in the music world. 
And if they had a show- we were there. 
Driving several hours one way sometimes and spending an enormous amount of time in old
 bars with interesting folks.

Christmas wreath and garland on doors

It was definitely a world we were not necessarily accustomed to- 
but one that we immersed ourselves in to support our oldest son and his band.

Christmas bedroom antique bed

And though the band played their somewhat dark,  heavy on the
  faster than you can imagine beating drum and screaming guitar 'death metal' music 
in old bars often-  
this show was different.

Christmas present on toile bedding

It was the week before Christmas.
In a semi -iffy old part of town near the bay,
where neglected old brick and stucco buildings 
were dotted with colorful lights
and green 'garland' banners were draped across the street.

Christmas bedroom chandelier and colorful tree in background

It was the building on the end on the right-
the one with the parking lot next to it
and the view of the freeway from the back.

There was something to be said about the juxtaposition of the twinkly
 Christmas lights lining the windows in that old run down bar
while the deafening heavy metal music played.
Though as someone who loves those rustic and refined mixes-
 I found it to be charming.

Christmas bedroom with faux fur stocking on bed

After the band warmed up, and played an hour of head banging, 
long hair twirling, 
you could hardly hear each instrument because it was so loud music... 
there was a pause.

A pause where all you could hear was the ringing in your ears.

Christmas bedroom with faux fur stocking and tree

The band took a few sips of water and then regrouped with a couple of nods to each other 
and then it started.

With just a very soft strum. 
So quiet. So surprising and unexpected.
And so filled with magic
 as you realized it was a familiar beginning
 of a much loved Christmas song.

Christmas presents on bed with tree

Carol of the Bells.

Watching those angry looking, long haired heavy metal band members 
showing their softer side and celebrating the season true to themselves 
and the way they felt their music-
with a metal hand and a beautiful Christmas song coming together...

It was so inspiring to me
 and it made my heart soar.

Christmas bedroom peek

That beautiful song played 
 on a cold rainy night in a dark bar in the middle of that
 not so great part of town...

Christmas bedroom presents

with twinkling Christmas lights on the windows
 and Christmas cookies
 being served with your drink
and interesting folks who quieted down just for a few minutes to listen...

That song played by the band at that show
was my absolute favorite.

I am pretty sure that I grinned ear to ear and wiped tears away at the same time.
It was amazing.

Christmas bedroom breakfast in bed

And both of my once little rock stars who grew up to be long haired heavy metal
 music playing boys
are now clean cut personal trainers
who play in gyms rather than bars now.

And guess who will be on their way home for Christmas tomorrow? 
I am so excited I can hardly stand it.

So I have been fluffing the guest bedroom and the cottage bedroom
and gathering all the cookie making supplies,
 mopping floors and wrapping gifts and...
Christmas bedroom with hot cocoa on bed

I remembered 3 dozen other things I need to do
this morning.
At 4 am. 
And when all the cooking, cleaning, wrapping
and those other 3 dozen things are done...

Christmas bedroom breakfast in bed

I just might get one of the guitars out for an encore performance.

Christmas bedroom breakfast and presents in bed

Hope your Tuesday is going well!

Florentine Tray- HomeGoods
Polka dot wrapping paper- HomeGoods
Toile bedding- Soft Surroundings

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  1. Can you tell me where you got that beautiful quilt?? I've been looking for gray and white, most unsuccessfully....

  2. Such beautiful writing, have a wonderful holiday!!

    I hope you get all your to do lists done :) Enjoy your Christmas!

    Lauren Baxter | Lovely Decor

  3. Isn't FAMILY'the best! Enjoy every day with them! Enjoy your blog!

  4. I loved this post! The writing style, the images you described, the heart. Thank you. Thank you for supporting your sons and for sharing this memory with us. Merry Christmas.

  5. I married a fellow much like that only he leaned toward rock n roll with country. He has his day job but he still feels the beat at 61! Merry Christmas!

  6. So sweet to see how a mom will support her children ....your blog is so beautiful.

  7. Loved the story and the magnificent images....I can relate to the "band thing" son was in a band for a long time....he wrote his own was not a shock when he chose Creative Writing for his major....Now he still writes creatively, just in "code"..... So I can so see you in those dark venues, the loud music, the ringing in your ears....cheering on your sons...that's what moms do....Enjoy your beautiful family this week....Merry Christmas Courtney!!!

  8. What a lovely story, it has brought a tear to my eye. I have two grown sons who will always, in some part, be my little boys. Beautiful photos, I love your blog.

  9. I am loving your blog. I started following you after seeing your house Jen's house tour. It has inspired me to decorate with more style. This blog brought tears to my eyes. I am so happy I found you!!! Merry Christmas and enjoy the magic family!!

  10. Love this post, Courtney! We are a very musical family (I even married a man who plays bass guitar), my eldest son (who is a drummer) is heavily into that sort of music too (I liked lots of rock-n-roll as a kiddo, just don't understand the whole 'screamo' thing) but happily, the Slash/Jimi Hendrix hair is now shorn and he's finished with culinary school. I'll always love and be endeared by memories of my little rock star. ;)

    You are such a beautiful story teller. I truly enjoyed this post. Have a lovely day!

  11. What a great story! Enjoy your Christmas time with family. Peace and safe travels to you and your loved ones.