This may come as a surprise, but my pets are a bit quirky.
Mr. Bean, for example, went through a stage wherein toys held no sway. You could hold up a bedazzled bird, fringed with feathers, hanging from a string, dancing to laser light, and he’d nary bat an eye. But now that he’s a spry thirteen, he’s tracked, batted, and pounced his favorite rat across the living room floor more times than I care count.
And he knows: toys are not to be toyed with beneath the tree.
So he’s taken to sending up a cry for help anytime his favorite foam ball rolls beneath the boughs. Not a subtle cry, I might add (it’s taken awhile to realize he is not, indeed, getting ready to hack up a hairball).
At first, it annoyed. After all, I’ve work to do—deadlines to meet—I’ve got to get it done so I can shop, write cards, wrap gifts, bake, celebrate Christmas, for the love of God and all that is holy!
Of course, I need only witness a few wild felines ascending the heights of O Tannenbaum to realize I’ve got it good.
Not only that, but if I pay attention, I just might learn a thing or two about celebrating the season in high fashion . . .
You see, my kits view wrapping gifts as a grand adventure (all the more so if it happens to entail 50 yards of ribbon and a myriad of jingle bells);
They view treats with an air of excitement (and nary a thought for calories);
And they view the hours as something best spent in the company of loved ones, lounging about next to the twinkling of light.
I fully intend to view the coming days in much the same way. With that . . .
A Merry Christmas to you–may be it be perfect, in all the ways that matter!
There are few traditions so long standing and true as the celebration of Friday . . .
Speaking of which, I celebrated last Friday with The Oak Ridge Boys.
I purchased tickets for my mum and me because, well, it’s the Oak Ridge Boys.
Not that I’m a big country music fan, mind—but The Oak Ridge Boys Christmas (circa 1982)? Well that’s another matter entirely. I grew singing to “Christmas is Paintin’ the Town;” shedding a tear to “Thank God for Kids;” and dreaming to “Happy Christmas Eve.”
Even today, Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without those boys, singing those songs.
Of course, as so often happens with tradition, you mustn’t deviate. Why, just last week they sang “Jesus was born today . . . “ Only their bass player failed to play the fancy bit during the acapella piece—total devastation.
Granted, my mom had no clue as to that of which I spoke—I had to play the song twice before she even heard it on the CD.
But I guess that’s the beauty of tradition. The memories you make last a lifetime; but there’s always an opportunity for making something new . . .
With that, I wish you a happy weekend. May the days ahead be so delightful, you’ll want to cherish them for decades to come.
Seems but yesterday I wished you a heart of thanksgiving; today, I wish you a heart of hope.
It is, after all, the first week of advent . . . the time of preparation, of waiting with bated breath for the arrival of a little babe, wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manager.
It’s so very easy to overlook. After all, preparation takes time! Even as I type, Santa’s workshop lies at my feet. That’s right, despite grandiose plans to have everything wrapped and under the tree (or out the door) by December 1, I find myself woefully behind.
There remain gifts to wrap, parties to attend, cookies to bake.
Then there’s the news . . .
Speaking of which, many of you have kindly asked an update of my co-worker’s sister, in Paris; we learned this week the family has made the decision to remove her from life support. My heart breaks. And they are but one family of countless families, facing countless sorrows. Some we witness (up close or from afar), others we know nothing about; some we share, others we carry alone.
At times it seems positively overwhelming.
But you know what that first candle stands for? Hope.
It stands for hope!
In the words of Desmond Tutu, “Hope is being able to see there is light, despite all the darkness.”
As that candle reminds, darkness can never extinguish the light.
So as we head into the first weekend of December, as we prepare for the holiday season, let us cling to hope. Let us hold on for all we’re worth; and when our neighbor’s hold is slipping, let’s lend a shoulder to boost him up.
In that, I dare say, we’ll know the true spirit of Christmas.
Well, it’s Christmas Eve. The day remains young . . . Christmas lights the darkness, Bing croons I’ll be Home for Christmas, and I sit snug in my PJs, sipping a vat of hot peppermint mocha and thinking of you.
You’re a family member with years worth of memories wrapped in the mere mention of your name . . . an old, faithful friend . . . a new friend . . . a visitor, little more than a mere speck on the map. Yet I think of you all the same.
You see, not only does this little corner of the web allow me to keep in touch with family and friends, it makes friends of strangers. I stand amazed and forever grateful.
So before the holiday hits full force, I want to send my warmest wishes your way. I pray most of you are celebrating in grand style–surrounded by those you love most; so happy, you fear your heart might burst. If, however, you face a Christmas tinged with blue, I pray special blessing . . . and days filled with peace. And for us all? I pray we’ll remember the true meaning of Christmas and cherish it within our hearts.
Merriest of Christmas wishes to you and yours!