Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Remembering Mama

One year ago today, celebrating her birthday.
I Thank my niece Diane for sending this poem to me. I have read it many times but this year is has more meaning to me. You see my Mom is spending..
Her first Christmas In Heaven.
I see the countless
Christmas trees,
Around the world below
With tiny lights, like Heaven's stars,
Reflecting on the snow.
The sight is so spectacular,
Please wipe away the tear,
For I am spending Christmas with
Jesus Christ this year.
I hear the many Christmas songs
that people hold so dear,
But the sounds of music can't compare
with the Christmas choir up here.
I have no words to tell you
the joy their voices bring
for it is beyond description
To hear the angels sing.
I know how much you miss me
I see the pain inside your heart
But I am not so far away,
We really aren't apart
So be happy for me, dear ones
You know I hold you dear,
And I'm glad I'm spending Christmas
with Jesus Christ this year.
I sent you each a special gift,
from my heavenly home above
I sent you each a memory
of my undying love.
After all, love is a gift more precious
than pure gold.
It was always most important
In the stories Jesus told.
Please love and keep each other
As my Father said to do,
For I can't count the blessing or love,
He has for each of you.
So have a Merry Christmas
And wipe away that tear.
Remember, I am spending Christmas with
Jesus Christ this year.
Happy Birthday to our Beautiful Mom. We do miss you.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Who Will be Home for Christmas?

As I was growning up, it was always expected that we would go to our Grandmothers homes for Christmas. Of course we all lived in the same community and it was a simple thing to do. We would visit with one family for a feast at noon and then go to the other Grandmothers for late afternoon visiting and leftovers. I thought that was the thing to do.

My mothers family was small. She had 4 brothers but one lived far away and one had not married. The other two brothers married late in life and their children were all younger than I was. If there were 15 at Grandma C's house, it was a crowd. This was not true in My Dad's family. Dad was number 7 of 8 children and by the time that I was three, there were great grandchildren in the family. We ate in shifts at Grandma R's. It was not unusual for there to be at least 3 to 4 dozen for a holiday meal. We kids would sit up and down the stairs, and even on the floors in the upstairs rooms. Grandmas never used paper plates either. Maybe that is why we ate in shifts....we had to wait on clean dishes.

The first Christmas after the Rancher and I married, we went to his Grandmothers for dinner. It was so quiet, There were only 8 people there county Me. No noises, You could pass the food around the table where everyone could sit at one time. It was not like any holiday meal I had experienced before. The Rancher was very kind and suggested that we go to Grandma's for supper. He didn't know what he was infor. It was standing room only in her dining and living room. All of the cousins and their families were there. He was as overwhelmed with that experience as I was with having dinner with no one there.

Through the years the program changed, Our grandmothers turned the jobs over to their children to have their own families in their own homes. For several years my own family has came home for the holidays. They don't always come on Thanksgiving Day or Christmas Day but they come home. It is where they want to be at this time of year. They also like to have a special time with their children in their own homes.

We enjoy our time at home too. We reflect on holidays past and recall the fun times through each generation. We attend services at one of local churches on Christmas eve. We visit with the Ranchers Mother and have a quiet supper or dinner with just 4 or 5 people. It is pleasant and at this age, I enjoy the peacefulness of the season.

We celebrate the real meaning of Christmas. My house has a tiny Christmas tree this year. The bulk of the family won't be here until New Years. Day. A big trea takes a lot of space and my collection of Nativties don't. I sit them out and enjoy them all. My son-in-law brought me one from Kenya this year. It is very primitive and of course the figures are long legged and black in color. I love it. I also have a special one from Uraguay. Jesus was for all people. He is in the hearts of all who have allowed him to be. The style and shape of the manger scene is what is in the eyes of the beholder. I saw one with longhorn steers this week. With this, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and hope that your home is filled with laughter from your children and grandchildren. If they can't be with you.....listen with your heart and you will hear their voices ring. In it all, let Jesus be present with you.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful husband. For 48 years we have shared our lives together. We were just a couple of kids 7 months out of high school when we wed. There was no need to wait. The Rancher always wanted to be a rancher and farmer and I always knew I would be a ranchers wife. After all these years I love him even more than I did then. You know I think young people don't really know what love is until they go through a lot of things in life. Love is what withstands all of the ups and downs, ins and outs, laughter and tears, and the happy times and sad ones. We have been through a lot of these things.
We have had a partnership from the beginning. I learned how to do all of the things that were necessary to be a partner in this operation and he helped me with the kids and house. This wasn't so in the beginning . One day the Rancher complained about never spending time with the kids and I thought that I never had a break from them. He taught me to drive the tractor and I would go to the field while he worked around the shop or spent time with the kids. This was usually for about 4 hours a day. In time, the kids got older and I could just farm all day if I wanted to. That was okay as he had a off farm job by that time and, we were partners.
When we were dating, I thought my sweetie was really in the money, I learned that he had spent it all on me before we were married. We had a short honeymoon at a nearby town and ate shrimp and steak for our meal. I had a conversation with a friend this summer and she mentioned where they had spent their honeymoon and where they ate their first meal and I had to laugh.....We had been to the same place.
If you are reading this my dear husband, Thanks for all the fun. It has been great and if I had to do it all over again, I would do it with you. You know the song,"Livin' on Love". That's us, two old people....Where did the time go?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

What Season is This?

What season is this???? It is rightfully the time of year that we as Christians celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. It is a Holy Season and a time of feeling drawn closer to our family and friends.
The real celebration of Christmas has long been lost in the commercialism of our society. It is a time for merchants to make a profit of the sales in their stores. It is a time of supporting trade with China and other countries that have caused our own factories to close. It is a time.......Well, here I go and I suppose that I sound a lot like Scrooge did but that is not my intention.Christmas is a wonderful time of the year for me and my family. It does break my heart to see what it has become. As I shopped yesterday and earlier in the season, I searched for Nativity Sets. It is my custom to give the newlyweds in my family a nice Nativity on their first Christmas. I could not find one in the stores that I visited. I can remember when there was an entire section filled with them. I have several Nativity sets from primitive looking to elegant, but the favorite is one purchased at the local variety store when The Rancher and I were newly weds.

We were married just before Christmas and spent our first anniversary doing our Christmas shopping and going home and decorating our tree. It was and still is a special time for us. I have to start my shopping a little earlier as our family has grown in size and I don't do too well doing it all at once anymore. Back to the beginning and the "Reason for the Season". Isn't the gift that God has given to us more precious than anything that man has made? I love the Christmas story and I think as I grow older it means more to me. God gave His precious Son who in turn gave His all for us. We are so undeserving of such love. We are also so Thankful for this plan that God had for us.

As a child, I remember our own cardboard creche. My sister had gotten it from selling Christmas cards. Maybe she bought it, but anyway, I remember sitting it under the tree and singing "Away in a Manger" on Christmas Eve. Our Dad would read the Christmas story and even as children we knew that it was Jesus who we should be acknowledging. We were kids and Santa was pretty much on our minds too.
The sad truth is this: Today Santa has taken front seat to Jesus and that is what makes me so upset.

Today, I will get out my Nativity sets and place them around the house along with my artificial poinsettas and greenery and holy berries and light some candles and play christmas music to get me in the christmas spirit. Next week, the Rancher and I will get out our 'artificial tree" and decorate it with the ornaments that we have collected and the kids and grandkids have made us through the years. It will be a time of remembering when all of the kids were at home helping us and how much we miss their laughing and talk as we worked on this family project. It will also be a time of thanking our Father in Heaven for providing His Son.

Christmas Morning will be quiet as the kids will be in their own homes making their own memories but we will have them all at home to close the year out and we will probably be thankful for all of the gifts that Santa has provided. Our prayer is that each one is filled with the true spirit of Christmas and the gift of a great love.