I'm sitting here with a heart and head full of wonderful and not so wonderful reminiscences of our Christmas together in 2008.
The most precious part of Christmas, next to the realization that it is the Birthday of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, is "visiting" with family and friends through Christmas Cards, Email messages that are heart-felt, telephone calls, and just memories. Christmas cards are treasured by this recipient -- more than the senders will ever know. I relive wonderful memories of each individual as I read their sentiments and in some cases their newsy newsletters. I love each and every one of them.
Billy came home for Christmas and brought his Cello with him. We were entertained greatly with his amazing talents.
Eliot also came and gave us a demonstration of "mini-cello" playing on my violin. We all laughed and had a wonderful time.
We all gathered for a light Christmas Eve dinner before opening packages. Billy brought Anna, his new girlfriend and we had a wonderful time getting to know this delightful girl.
On Christmas morning, we headed for Washington on impossible winter highways. It was a good drive, however -- Billy's Subaru is an amazing car! We traveled through rain, ice, snow and slush, and finally arrived at our destination by 5 p.m. Our first stop was for dinner at a wonderful Philipino family's home. They opened their hearts and their home to us and shared their Christmas/Birthday feast. After the dinner, we went to the hospital to say good-night to Dean's mom.
This is an exceptionally difficult Christmas for Dean and his family. His mother is in the hospital in Tacoma, Washington, with no expectation that she will ever recover. We wait daily (hourly, actually) for news that her life on this earth has ended. She is an amazing lady, with an amazing family. We all gathered around her bed the day after Christmas, and Billy played "Silent Night" for her on his Cello and Dean and I sang while we watched her mouth the words so lovingly. Afterwards, Billy left the room and wept. He had given his grandmother her last Christmas present.
This is by far one Christmas that will not soon be forgotten. And now, we look towards 2009, as a year of many "changes" (and that is not necessarily politically!) We ask God's blessings to be with each and every one of you as you close yet another chapter in your life and begin a New Year with a clean, new page. May you write beauty, love, hope and peace on each and every page.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Who would have thought we would have such a phenomenon on the coast! The snow was beautiful, while it lasted, but now has turned to rain and very cold. I had to make a trip to Portland on Monday, and had to find an alternate route to I-5, because most of our northern routes were "closed"! When I got to Salem, I had to "chain-up" and drive 20-30 MPH for the next 65 miles to the airport to pick up Eliot. It was a beautiful sight, but not a whole lot of fun to drive in! What is normally a 2 1/2 hour drive turned out to be more like 6 or 7! Fortunately, his flight was not cancelled or dalayed, and we once again pointed the old Cirrus south, stopping overnight to rest. We finally got home Tuesday at about 3 pm. It is certainly going to be a white Christmas for a lot of folks.
We are venturing out again on Christmas day to travel to Washington state to visit with Dean's family. It is not going to be a happy Christmas up there, as his mother is doing really poorly. We don't know how much longer she is going to be with us. Both Billy and Eliot may have to say good-bye to their grandmother. Billy has prepared "Silent Night" to play for his grandmother on his cello. I'm sure there will be many tears. Dean is doing OK, but it has been a difficult 2 days for him. Prayers would certainly be appreciated.
God bless you all this Christmas Eve and through Christmas and all of the Holidays. We so appreciate all of you and have come to realize that family is an extremely important part of our lives.
Friday, December 12, 2008
|Make a Smilebox slideshow|
You might want to turn off the regular music that is playing while viewing the slide show. Dean and I had such a good time on the beach with my friend, Kimberly, who is a professional photographer and she did an awesome job creating a collection of fun, happy, joyous, loving christmas photos. I have included just a small sample of the fun photos she took. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did doing it. It was one of the most fun days at the beach we have ever had together. Even though the sun wasn't bright, like a warm, summer day, Kimberly said it was "perfect" for photo taking! She was right.
Enjoy, and Merry Christmas, everyone.
Monday, December 8, 2008
I love the feeling of Christmas! I love the focus that has come into my life of the importance of recognizing that it is the Savior's birth that we celebrate with the rest of the world on December 25th. I love the music that fills my house and the many stores that I visit and the radio waves. I love the magic that is present on the faces of countless little boys and girls who anticipate a magical event in unselfish gift giving. I love Christmas!
Yesterday, Dean and I had the privilege to sing with the 50 voice Midway Chorus , along with a 27 piece orchestra, Handel's The Messiah! This amazing chunck of music was conducted by our Seventh-day Adventist Doctor, Doctor Albert Thompson. He is absolutely amazing! It was a humbling experience to be among some of the area's finest soloists who did such an outstanding job. I got chills and became quite emotional at the climax of our program, when the entire audience stood as we sang The Hallelujah Chorus. It was a moving experience for both Dean and I. I wish both of our families could have been in attendance to hear and experience this event. We have one more performance next Sunday.
This is such a wonderful time of the year! I hope everyone's experiences are going about the same. Somehow, we are able to lay aside the worldy things that are going on all around us and focus on more important things, like our Savior and Family and re-connecting with friends. Love is in abundance and lifts our hearts to being better people, better friends, better mothers, better children, better Christians.
I have to share what JerriAnne has been up to! (She takes this project very seriously) and her artistic talents come through with flying colors -- in fact with a winning (Second Place) creation!
She made this window display entirely out of candy! It is an annual event in Provo, and this is JerriAnnes' second year to participate. She won the event last year. Her display is in a store window in downtown Provo. I was with her in May, when she was shopping for the ingredients and forming the idea for Santa in a livingroom setting. I thought at the time, "this is quite an undertaking!" Now, when I view her pictures of the end results, I am amazed! Congratulations, JerriAnne on a job well done. For the life of me, I do not know where my children inherited their artistic talents from! The left side of their brains certainly must be extremely active!
Well, that was week one of the Holiday "fever." I shall write more with my next entry. God bless and may you have that wonderful spirit, which is Christmas, with you each and every day!