Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Ho Ho Ho

I opened my new front door Sunday evening, and look what I saw:

A whole lot of happy, that's what!

Some of the youth from my church stopped by to carol. I stood there and laughed with them when they kept mangling the verses of the song. They gave me candy canes and a lot of smiles, hugs and love.  And they were much appreciated.

For the most part, I am just skipping Christmas this year. (Do not panic, adult children o'mine: I've already wrapped your gifts.) But the decorating? It is just not going to happen.  You  want to know something interesting? I didn't put the decorations up until December 22 last year as evidenced by this blog from a year ago.  Back then, I had walking pneumonia and  missed a special friend's brunch and D's office party. The tree went up with hours to spare before our Christmas guests arrived in 2008. This year my reason for not pulling the red and green containers out is just a tad different.

One Christmas tradition that has left me in a quandary is ye olde annual Christmas letter and picture. I've never missed a year. I trooped on over to Sam's Club last Sunday to see which picture I should copy in multiples and mail to the masses. I scanned in pictures of all the kids and knew at forty cents a copy I may not be inserting a photo in every card. A sales lady came over and said, "If you get 100 photo cards, you get a special price of $15." Hmmm. Yes, please.

The next hurdle was composing the letter. I have found it is best to assume that people know about D. We decided we'd do our little "what happened during the last year" blurbs, and then we'd add a special memory of D as a little memorial.

I love the memories the kids chose:

K: My favorite memory of Dave was at our wedding. He was unable to walk me down the aisle, but he met me at the front and led us all in a family prayer. Except he was too choked up to pray. But that was OK. He always made me feel so supported.

H: When I was a little girl, Dad used to cut my hair. Unfortunately, I was a wiggly child and he could never get it even. Once I kept spinning on his work stool while he cut it, and it turned out really short. It looked even shorter after he rolled it in foam curlers!

C: On our first Christmas together, Dave dressed up like Cousin Eddie from "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" movie with a thin white v-necked sweater and a black dickey. He kept a straight face the entire time, so we weren't sure if he was serious or not. He kept us laughing with his dry sense of humor.

E:I loved the time Dad took me to the AnimeFest in Dallas. We did so many fun things since Dad was so into making sure we go t the most out of it. I never have to think hard to find a good memory of Dad, but that was one of the greatest experiences of all with him.

And my contribution: Dave left behind many ways to let me know that I was loved and cared for: I found a playlist created for me on his Ipod, an envelope with money for a trip to Italy and special inscriptions written on the bottom of several pieces of furniture he built for me. He is never far from my heart or my thoughts.

We are still walking this journey toward healing from  tremendous loss, but we are so blessed to have family and friends who walk alongside us. Certainly there is no better time of year to remember the hope and great joy that is ours:

"I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. Today in the city of David, a Savior has been born to you: he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign unto you: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on who his favor rests." (Luke 2:11-14)


Dawn said...

It is great that you thought to take a picture of your carolers - I wouldn't have thought of it 'til they were long gone!

I saw Pastor Mark at church last night and told him about the "coincidence" of me finding your blog months ago, reading it and praying for you, only to find out through a post about hair stylists just who you are and our common connections. I just love it when God arranges "coincidences".

What a great idea to share memories in your Christmas letter. I'm sure these will invoke many more fond memories for all who read the letter.

Love and blessings!

Lynn said...

What great memories and a great way to do your Christmas letter. I hadn't written one for years until last year I sent an email to my family and closest friends. Not sure what I will do this year. Guess I need to decide that SOON!! I am back to doing the full blown Christmas decorating, took awhile and added to that is the fact that my kids don't come home for Christmas now because I don't have room for them. We all get together at one of their homes instead. I have probably done more decorating this year than I have since J died. I am now at a place where I do it for myself to enjoy! I love the lights, candles and all the warmth that Christmas decor brings to my little home! Someday you will feel like it again too but for now you need to do what works for you. How neat that the youth came to sing you carols, and even more important give you hugs!! I noticed there is no snow outside your front door!! LOL

V....Vaughan said...

It's nice to be able to comment on your Christmas mail...which I got a few days ago, and is hanging on our kitchen window. I loved the memories of Dave...still thinking of you often, and unable to think of you WITHOUT Dave, yet...I know you know what "new normal" means, but it sure is not an easy path to get there...Rayeanne, you are doing well, but I wish you I saw you more often to give a hug (or chocolate) ;) Will drop by again soon...