Sunday, December 26, 2010

She Dreamed of a White Christmas

I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round, as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys. ~Charles Dickens

After gifts had been unwrapped and during a phone call to the Princess made to her grandmother, it began to snow very lightly. It would snow more heavily and all the rest of the day, something not that common in Georgia. The temperatures were above freezing, but cold enough to allow much of it to stick and the mercury would drop well below freezing line in the evening. We all are thankful for our new slippers from Santa Claus, although my daughter now says she knows he is not real, but she chooses to believe in him!

Christmas Eve, my husband woke our daughter very early and took her out on property we leased for hunting and camping. Later they also went together to deliver presents she had bought herself to her friends in the neighborhood. We prepared for services that evening and worshiped with three other families. Nearly everyone contributed something to the service itself as our pastor was away visiting his children and grandchildren. The poor Princess was not in bed until 11:00 PM. Now typically, she can still be awake at that time, but not when she wakes up so early and has such a full day.

We were already awake and just waiting for her, when the Princess joined us in bed on Christmas morning. She was eager to start the day with feeding rabbits, the daily cleaning of the hamster cage and cat box, and even eating breakfast. The night before my husband and I made our traditional cranberry breakfast cake, but this time I tried a different recipe and I used more cranberry sauce than it suggested. This one was not as sweet as the ones in the past. I usually like sweeter foods and my husband does not, but this one we both liked very much as there were plenty of sweeter sweets for later in the day. I have already considered how it might be improved upon.

It was a good Christmas. The Princess received things she actually would use and that part pleased me very much. These were not excessive additions that would add to the clogging collections of stuff in her room. She did get one game called Herd Your Horses from her grandmother (although we were given money to choose the gifts ourselves) that we played together today...after she began making thank you notes and after she played outside in the snow, which should last another day before the temperature rises high enough to melt it away completely.

The church board, what few members were not away, were called Christmas evening agreeing to cancel morning services for today because the roads might be slick and our guest pastor could not make it in, being from part of the state further north and icy. I was relieved as the two people who take turns leading in our praise time were away and I had been asked to do it. It is not my strongest gift to lead in singing, but my husband and I are known to fill in as the need arises, so I was willing...and knowing there would only be a few people there helped also.

The one thing that surprised me about Christmas this year was how perfect it seemed to be.

  • It was not just the snow, although that was a fine addition pleasing the Princess very much and she was out in it with her brand new pink leopard print rubber boots!
  • It certainly was not that our TV service was again on, although it was nice that my husband was able to watch his favorite Christmas movie "A Christmas Story" about Ralphie's desire for a Red Ryder BB Gun since we cannot find the DVD we know we had.
  • It was not that I had a brand new Charles Wysoki jigsaw puzzle that I spread out on the dining room table on a special felt so I could roll it up and move it when necessary to prepare a meal.
  • It was not that we planned a simple meal:
  • hickory smoked turkey out on our grill after the turkey had been soaking in a brine all night in the cold on our deck (and was the tenderest and juiciest my husband ever has done);
    my Baked Sweet 3-P's of sweet potatoes with pears and pecans that also is not very sweet;
    King Hawaiian rolls this time instead of my sourdough bread, mostly because I did not realized there were not any left in the freezer;
    a fresh, spring greens salad with sourdough croutons (instead of my more tradition holiday cole slaw this time);
    and my husband's homemade whole cranberry sauce.
  • It was not just that my concerns about my husband's mother being alone for the first time this Christmas or about my brother and sisters, who do not even send cards, I put aside to enjoy precious moments with the ones who are closest to me.

It simply was I chose to see the good in everything and not allow myself to build up internal pressures. That and the people dearest to me, my husband and my daughter, were also happy. The Princess never seems to be disappointed in any gift she receives nor focuses on the things she does not get. I have had some very good Christmases, but I have to say that this Christmas for me was the best one ever and I really would like to have that feeling every day so....

I am thinking that I might just make a New Year's Resolution...yes, I just might. It is something I rarely do! I might make one about finding at least one thing each day is enjoyable about life and to let go of those things that drag my attitude down, as I am seeing I may have been passing on some undesirable traits to my daughter unintentionally. I will pray about them and trust God with them and not allow myself to be concerned about that which what I have entrusted Him. I also might make a resolution to try to find one thing each day to do to make someone else have enjoyment, even if it—no, especially if it requires that I make a sacrifice of sorts from what I want. Maybe I will be a better person, a happier person. Maybe God has been trying to get me to see this. May be this was His special gift to me this Christmas. came along with the snow.

~ My Lord, in the last few months I have become keenly aware of how unhappy I am and how I seem to be waiting on something before I will be happy, but that something really comes from within myself. It is a gift You have already given, but that I have not really opened up and used. Let this not be something that I take out and put on a shelf to look upon and dust off once in awhile, but something I use daily. Thank you, my Lord, for the gift and thank you for making it obvious to me how much I need it. ~


Thank you fellow travelers for walking and talking with me along this journey.