Hooray for Christmas! Hooray for family! Hooray for memories!

Dear Family,

Your Dad was concerned yesterday when he read my post.  “Why are you so sentimental?  Is there something I should know?”

No, I don’t believe I have a fatal disease.  I don’t have a “knowing” of an impending disaster.  But it’s Christmas  and we’ve just had a milestone anniversary.  It is a time of remembering for me.

I am sailing along with memories.  I see a smile, hear a funny mispronunciation, and visualize a face from the past.  The warm breezes carry scenes from my childhood.  I am riding a horse, rocking a baby to sleep, crying with my sisters, and on, and on.

Right this minute, as the sun is rising through the clouds at St. Barth, F.W.I, I am LOL  (inappropriately, since I am sitting solo on the deck) at the mental image of my sister stuck half-way in the window; being shoved by her husband-to-be (who left her hanging there) as Dad was entering the bedroom. That doesn’t have anything to do with Christmas but it was in the house and around the time we opened every one of our presents a day early.  We were old enough to re-wrap them and escape detection, but we ruined our own Christmas.

And the year that same sister came with her kids on Christmas Eve.  As we sat up all night assembling gifts, children kept appearing, rubbing their bleary eyes and asking if it was morning yet.  At two o’clock in the morning her dog rummaged in the garbage can, got it’s tongue stuck in a tuna can and ran yelping through the house waking EVERYONE!

Or the year we were moving to a new grand house where each of you kids had your own room.  You thought the new house was our only gift until your younger brother ran from his room screaming…he had located his new bike.  Or our Christmas at Crescent Lake…or Christmas when I embarrassed my daughter-in-law by buying her a negligee…or Christmas with our first baby girl when I was SURE that she knew and recognized all of her presents at five months old.

Or our first married Christmas when I learned more about my new husband.  He was sure that our spindly little tree needed snow and determined that it should have it.  He sprayed it in place, including the wall, the ornaments, and the strings of lights.  I cried the year we broke the last shiny blue ball with its blobs of snow.

I can’t recall every Christmas but I can summon the color, warmth and joy that surrounds my memories with all of you.  I can feel the giggles bubbling in my throat when I think of Christmas shows at church and at school.  I remember my grandson sitting in the pews in the headdress his sister had worn in her part as a wise man.  I remember another grandson, too young to dissemble, who asked his grandparents, “Did you think I would like this?”

You have all enriched our lives and created these memories with us.  You are the gifts we love the most.   I hope you are all wrapped in love today.  The hustle and bustle should be over and the time for togetherness has come.  Enjoy it and know that we are with you in spirit.

This should be the last entry from this sentimental journey…but that isn’t a promise. Love to you all, my family, my friends and anyone who loves this loving season as much as I do.

xxoo

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