Friday, December 23, 2011
At one of the "after Christmas" sales last year I happened upon these flat, golden, big, WORDS, Christ is Born, super cheap!! I had no idea what I was going to do with them. They were stored with all the other TONS of Christmas decor in the attic. Well, they survived the 100+ blistering OK summer up there and I re-found them again a few weeks ago.
Honeybuns emptied the attic and garage shelves of Christmas stuff and I started sorting through the bells, balls and baubles of years gone by. Since the kids and grand kids were not coming to Tulsa this year I decided to forgo the usual old time family flavor. (It was hard to bypass the faded, blue construction paper angel WITH Philip's third grade picture attached imitating Gabriel!)
SO....whal-la, the Christ is Born tree was....well...born! There are angels, decorative twigs and several white ceramic ornaments declaring the names of God, "the bridegroom," "the resurrections and the life," "the Door", "the Shepherd." The pagan tree is shouting GLORY!
As much as I absolutely adore the old time Santas, snowmen, and tiny sleighs, THIS reminds me of the purpose of the celebration!
CHRIST TRULY IS BORN! He left his magnificent heavenly home to become one of US, to display the very character and nature of Deity! We celebrate the day that history was split in two, before HIM and after HIM! There is no greater event from eternity past through eternity future. GOD IN THE FLESH! His birth changed EVERYTHING!
He came, lived, died and RETURNED FROM THE DEAD to prove that He really was who He said He was! He returned to heaven with a promise to return again.
CHRIST is CHRISTmas! (And as much as I love my Jewish, Muslim and atheist friends, HE will always be!)
The event thousands of years ago has changed me.....and millions just like me! IMMANUEL, God with ME!
I'm thinking about leaving this tree up all year long!
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
When your grown children live far away from the nest and have several young children, the ONLY practical thing to do for Christmas is for this BeBe and PaPA to go to them (while we're still able!) This past weekend was designated the Colorado Christmas and it was wonderful!
|Jamie tolerating Andy!|
|BeBe and the Twins|
|Gabby and her twin babies!|
|Lesly Forrest and Papa|
|Maggie learning to sew!|
|BeBe, get out of my way or I'll squish you like a bug.|
|We are so Blessed!|
Monday, December 12, 2011
Every year near the first of December I get our yearly card designed and ordered. It's an artistic challenge! Pictures of the kids and grand kids usually adorn the front. A letter of the past years activities is drafted and edited and printed on Christmasy paper. The address list on my computer is updated and labels are printed off.
Then I sit down and carefully fold, stamp and stick until all 250 or so are ready to go to the PO. The process of preparing all those envelopes gives me time to think about each recipient and recall some very wonderful times. We have family members and eternal friends located across America. Quiet smiles and silent tears accompany me for most of an afternoon.
I do not take my Christmas list lightly!
I utter a small prayer for each person, praying that they are well, that their children and grandchildren are near and that they are enjoying the sights and sounds of this most wonderful time of the year. I pray that each loved one will experience the depth of God's love sometime during December. I consciously hope that each finds a way to celebrate the birth of Christ amidst all the secular trappings of the holiday.
The whole Christmas card task is a serious undertaking for me! And until this moment this whole ordeal has been a closely guarded secret!
Evidently other folks have a Christmas card routine as well, for about mid-December my mailbox begins to be full every day. No more catalogs, just lovely cards, notes, pictures and letters. What a joy it is to hear from a friend that I've not heard from since last Christmas.
I rejoice over new marriages, new babies, new jobs, and successful surgeries. I cry with my friends over the painful news of the death of a family member, a divorce or the struggle of a wayward child. Thanks to the US Post Office we are reaching and touching each other.
In a few years this whole business of sending cards in the mail will probably disappear. E-cards will surely replace the snail mail kind. It's so much more efficient and light years quicker. The wishes no doubt will be just as genuine and heartfelt!
The Post Office itself might be considered a dinosaur nearing extinction!
Christmas cards might be found only in dusty museums or at the bottom of my office closet!
I'm going to miss those long afternoons reflecting and remembering.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
The date in question was last Friday night. We'd returned home from a church Christmas party about 11 p.m. It was a fabulous time and Honeybuns and I were in a festive mood. I checked my iPad to see if anything new had occurred while I was enjoying the celebration.
I learned that while we were partying the Colorado kids had been trying to FACETIME me on my iPad. I was SO disappointed that I'd missed seeing their smiling, laughing faces and talking to them.
SO, I immediately hit the magic button that instantaneously connects us. After a few short rings I expected to see a grandchild's face appear on my screen. The message read, "connecting.!" I was SO excited. When the screen remained dark I spoke into it.
"Hays! (age 13) Is that you, I can't see your face, the screen is totally black."
"Yes BeBe, but I'm in my room in the dark, whispering, I'm supposed to be in bed sleeping!"
"O.K. let's factime tomorrow, luv you, good night!"
"I love you, BeBe, we'll talk tomorrow!"
THEN I noticed the time. It was 11:30 in Oklahoma, which meant it was 10:30 in Colorado. What WAS that boy (age 13) doing with his iPad in the bed with him at that hour! Honeybuns replied, "talking to YOU, you should not have called this late." Yep, no doubt about that.
I was made aware of what happened on the other end of that connection the next morning! Because Hays is forbidden to be on his ipad at bedtime, because it makes a little noise when he and I connect, and because MOMMY was coming in the room just as he turned it off, WE WERE BUSTED! The iPad was confiscated and WE were GROUNDED!
I believe Mommy's exact words to me were, "What am I going to do with the two of you?"
That's the truth, the whole truth and nuttin' but the truth!
I've since repented, apologized to Hays and his Mommy for getting him into trouble!
Now, if this goes any farther, I'm going to demand a jury of my peers! 12 Granny's will show me mercy, I have no doubt!
However the verdict comes down, I'm comforted because, YOU CAN'T SPANK GRANDMA!
Sunday, December 4, 2011
There was much singing and smiling! Following the formal presentations everyone was invited to an adjoining hall to view the projects each student had completed before the year started. All proud grandparents were in awe of the students abilities to say the least!
BUT...one particular performance nearly brought down the house and received a very lengthy standing ovation. A young man in grade 8, Henry Webb, gave a stunning mini-concert on the churches four- story pipe organ. The schools headmaster related his story.
Henry first noticed that grand musical instrument just two years ago while attending a "Grandparents Day" when he was in grade 6. He was enthralled and asked the organist to teach him to play it. She quietly informed him that piano lessons had to come first and was confidant he'd be busy for years practicing sight reading and tedious scales. He immediately started classical piano and took lessons for 3 months. He returned to ask once again if she would teach him to play that organ. She agreed! Soon it was very apparent that Henry and the Pipe Organ were made for each other. He spent this past summer touring Europe and playing organs in the ancient cathedrals there. One year after his formal organ training began, Henry played the Prelude and Postlude for this years Grandparents Day program and we were among those benefiting from his dedication and unbelievable talent.
That very young man stunned the crowd with Bach's Fugue in D Major and Salomes Grand Choeur. The Postlude was Toccata by Alphonse Mailly. His fingers AND feet were flying over the keys. Everyone jumped from their seats and gave him their roaring applause. He quickly took a bow and disappeared behind the organ. He had to be coaxed out to receive the extended ovation. He was bashfully embarrassed and pleased at the same time!
I saw it with my own eyes, his performance was glorious!! Henry Webb was BORN to play the pipe organ. It is amazing that he discovered his purpose for existing while only in the sixth grade!
Not just anyone can tackle the pipe organ! The extremely gifted and faithful organist of Park Cities Baptist church has served there for the past 35 years. Thankfully she saw something in Henry that convinced her to take the time to teach him. Thankfully he sought her out to be his teacher and mentor.
It certainly is a match made in heaven. Only God could do such a thing! Henry will spend his life making incredible music! Hopefully we'll get to hear more of it!