God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas 2007

Christmas was good this year--but, then, isn't it usually? Some years though are better than others and this was one of those times. Perhaps, because we weren't here last year, there was a sense of something special in resurrecting our traditions and "ways of doing things." It was comfortable and nice.

We always have a large tree-8 feet/2.5 meters or more and finding the perfect one is always the quest. Usually we settle for less than perfection--after all, perfection is hard to find. But this year.........there it was, standing tall and straight and beautifully formed. We spotted it instantly among all the other preening trees and knew that one was meant to be ours. And so it was.

Now, you must know that I am not Martha, never have been, never will be--nor, do I ever aspire to be. Given this, Ken took over tree decorating years ago--back in the days when trees were lovingly bedecked with silver, shiny tinsel. He not only would put it on strand by strand but then would take each strand off, wrap it around the cardboard and put it away for next year. I think no one misses those days.

But, if you look closely you will see that he still does an excellent job of dressing a tree in Christmas finery. And, in doing so, provides all of us something lovely to enjoy and savor during the Christmas season. Somehow a tree decorated with the shimmer of lights and ornaments collected over many years and from many places invokes the treasured memories stored within. A special glow seems to fill all the nooks and crannies of the house.

By Christmas morning, after Santa and Rudolph did their thing the night before, gifts were piled high under the tree. Clearly a child lived here. So gift opening was a fun time.

This part of Christmas is clearly made for a child and for adults to enjoy the child's wide-eyed excitement as each box and bag reveals its treasure. Erector sets, legos, remote controlled dragonflys, and...and...and. Then there were his not so favorite things such as books and puzzles. Except--he loved the Italian book on the life of Leonardo da Vinci. He loves all things Italian and all things da Vinci for whom he has developed quite a fondness--along with Giotto, Picasso and Michelangelo.

The rest of the day was filled with laughter and fun. Jeff, our grown son who can not imagine Christmas without legos, spent the day building a 900+ piece Star Wars vehicle. His friend Sally and her very loveable, unforgettable dog Bear joined us for the day--Scratch finally had a play date but wasn't at all sure what he thought of sharing his space with a non-human. He certainly was not going to share his chewy.

Casey's mom, our daughter, came for the day. It was nice that they could have the day together as Casey enjoyed seeing her and spending time together and I am certain she enjoyed it, too. It had been a while since they had a chance to do that.

We toasted with prosecco and sparkling cider. And then joined around the festive table set up in green and red and china and silver.

Dinner was yummy and conversation filled the air. And so the house was full of good cheer and laughter.

And we remembered the real reason for the day and the gifts and the fun and laughter--the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The one who came to earth as a humble baby and left it in a glorious ascent into the heavens.


Anonymous said...

What a wonderful and warm Christmas! I wish you and your family a very Happy New Year. All the best in 2008!

Jane said...

Maryann, thanks for the wishes--and for enjoying our Christmas. The best to you in 2008, too...

Jerry said...

Jane - you tree was lovely. I am sure Ken was thrilled to not have the 'issues' he had with it last year!

It would appear that Casey was a very good boy last year to have received so many treats.

Jane said...

Jerry, I'm making your pennette lasagna in a few minutes--except I could not find pennette--is that the same as mini-penne?

What issues did Ken have with the tree last year? I need my memory refreshed.

Chiocciola said...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Jane and family! Sounds like a wonderful Christmas. I also had the chance to spend Christmas with a kid and it really makes it more special!

Jane said...

Erin, yes, children do make it more fun--their innocence and awe is lost so soon that these first years are precious. Happy New Year