I do love Christmas. Of course, what it means to me has evolved over my lifetime. I don't buy a single gift. Nothing to wrap or fret over. Well, we get our forty-something kids gift cards. They live in 3 different states and all are unmarried with no children. If I had grandbabies, I'd be out there with the rest of the crazies shopping for whatever the "must-have" toy of the season is. However, alas, only grandpuppies. So, no shopping and I ask family, coworkers and friends to pass on gifts for me.
I love the sights, sounds, smells. The person in the McDonald's drive-through in front of you buying your breakfast just because, motivating me to do the same for the one behind me and PRAYING they're not picking up food for their entire office. LOL The Salvation Army bell ringers, the lights and decorations, the food. Pulling out my Christmas coffee mugs and choosing which one I'll use today. All the cheesy Christmas movies. My favorite - "Home by Christmas" starring Linda Hamilton. Yes, that's right - the same Linda Hamilton of Terminator fame. Check it out. It's a lovely movie. I watch it every year. The Grinch with Jim Carrey and the original White Christmas with Bing Crosby.
There are some happy childhood memories of Christmas and there are many blank years after our mother abandoned us when I was in the first grade and my baby brother was in diapers. Home-to-home, family-to-family for a lot of years. Now I have my own home and can make my own memories.
We rescue cats, actually any critter in need of rescuing, but have given a home to six of the cats. Yep, we're the crazy cat couple. So, no Christmas Tree. What? You haven't seen all those YouTube videos of cats in Christmas Trees? LOL Decoration is minimal, but each piece dearly loved. The fireplace mantle with odds and ends - candles, manger scenes, a talking cat with a mouse on his shoulder who recites 'Twas the Night Before Christmas" when you press his paw. Stockings on the wall and one for the cats. The cheap plastic wreath to slide Christmas cards in. One year my husband insisted on a tree, so I bought a 3-foot fully decorated tree at Walgreens and he hung it from the ceiling in the living with fishing line. Cats couldn’t reach it there, but we didn’t take the tree down until October. Last time we did that.
My favorite thing about Christmas though, is Jesus. Turning the pages of my Bible and reading how he loved me so very, very much that he accepted the commission from his Father to be born in a manager, live, die and rise again to make a way for me. My daughter gave me a beautiful little book years ago at Christmas and now it’s a tradition that I start reading it each year as my Twelve Days of Christmas. It has meant so much to me that I buy up copies and give to family and friends. I know I said I don’t shop for Christmas. I guess this is the exception. It’s a small book with 12 chapters called “Love Found a Way: Stories of Christmas” by Ron Mehl. I hope one day you have the opportunity to hold this little jewel in your hands and be as inspired, mesmerized, awed and humbled, as I have in the reading of it.
Merry Christmas, my SparkFriends. God bless you.