Friday, December 31, 2021


 Okay, enough about Christmas at our house.  

Today I bring back my Mom and my sister, Lindy.  Christmas past.   We had such fun back in those days when they were still here.  How fortunate I am to still have two sisters and two brothers still living.  

I've started taking down decorations, but I think I'll leave the Christmas village up for one more night.  



Christmas at Our House ~ Episode 5 ~ THE CHAOS

First in my thoughts this year was, this will likely be Gracie's last Christmas with us.  

Not that she contributes that much to the festivities.  But.  She's there.  To snuggle.  To smell her sweetness.  To cater to her needs. To love and to accept her love.  

She is a part of our life that will be missed deeply when she goes. 
 Jasper has enjoyed this Santa since he was a baby.  He still loves it.  When you push the button on Santa's tummy his coat opens and magical lights appear inside while kids sleep in their beds waiting for Santa and The Night Before Christmas is told in its entirety.  

I'm always drawn to the younger ones at Christmastime.  They still hold Christmas magic in their hearts.

Gracie stayed close to Daddy most of the day.

That is, when she wasn't guarding presents. 

May God's love rule in your heart as 2021 comes to a close and we welcome a new year.  God Bless!  

Christmas Day 2021

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Christmas at Our House ~ Episode 4 ~ ON WITH THE PLAN OF CHRISTMAS

Welcome to my happy place.  I love color, so I go with a more fun decor when decorating.  Also, I think, now what would the kids enjoy?

Here is my secret for depression/pain/anxieties, etc:  Do something.  Create something.  Pray to God for strength and direction to do so.  

Husband is a pretty depressed and negative person.  He'll admit to the depression but I'm not sure if he'd own up to the negativity.  He's good though, really.  But there was no way I was about to suggest he put the whole train/village thing up this year.  It's an all day job.  It was absent last year as well.  In all fairness though, he is responsible for the outside Nativity scene hanging and for Anvil's (our gorilla) Christmas-wear.  

So I put my thinking cap on.  I wanted to display the Christmas Village on my own, no negative vibes.   And so, I cleared off some shelves and began.  

With each placement of houses I became more and more excited!  Christmas was coming to our house after all.

It's been a really sad year for many.  So many have lost loved ones or pets.  I've been contacted to pray for a lot of people throughout the year.  Some have made it.  Some have not.

Covid has been making its way through families with a strong force.

I find it disheartening to watch kids having to mask up to go to school or be involved in activities.  I understand, but yet I am sad for them.

It's not the world we grew up in.  I doubt things will ever be the same again.

However.  In the land of Christmas Magic, life goes on as usual.   The Christmas Carnival is in full swing.  Kids are laughing and playing in the snow.  Ice skaters are gently gliding over the ice.  

There is no talk of pandemic or virus and nobody gets sick here.  They just enjoy time together and have fun.

Grandma bakes cookies and shares warm ones right out of the oven, with kids that are outside building a snowman.

Santa stops at the pet store to choose a special puppy for a child.

Inside houses, families have come together to share recipes, play games and laugh, while the children toss snowballs at one another in the new-fallen snow.

Yes, life in the land of Christmas Magic is enchanting, calm, and reserved for the young at heart.

Creating Christmas Magic kept me busy and it was fun.

My back is much better, but arthritis is here to stay.  I don't think there is a magic bullet or cure for that.

 Gracie has good days and bad days.  Christmas day she slept a lot, even through the craziness of it all.  

She has become quite friendly in her old age.  She used to attack visitors immediately when they'd walk in the door.  Now she smells their hand and walks away.

I'm glad I decided to decorate for Christmas.  It makes me feel good to see the color and to know that Christmas did not skip us this year.  It was here.  In all its glory.  Fun. Chaos.  Happiness. Love.  

You have to just.   Make it happen.  And so I did.

not a creature was stirring not even a mouse... ummm.. yea, about that mouse.

                                                                  To Be Continued....

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Christmas at Our House ~ Episode 3 ~ THE REASON

In trying to keep steadfast on the reason for our celebration of Christmas, we shared a nativity for all highway goers to see.  One day an elderly gentleman stopped by to thank us for doing so.  I thought that was nice.  

 To Be Continued....

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Christmas at Our House ~ Episode 2 ~ YOU GOTTA MOVE IT, MOVE IT

We will call this episode: Work Through the Pain.  Both Gracie and I were feeling it that day.  But she loves her walks, and keeping her active helps her navigate better.  And me too.  

Christmas was weeks away, and since I had purposed to bake tons of cookies and fudge for the kiddos and to go ahead and decorate, time was of the essence.  


Gracie said she'd put up with the chaos as long as she got a healthy number of walks.

 To Be Continued...

Monday, December 27, 2021

Christmas at Our House ~ Episode 1 ~ HOLDING OUT FOR HOPE

 I said early on.  "I'm not decorating this year.  Not in the mood.  Too much negativity in the world.  There's no room for hope."  Gracie concurred.

"Decorate," said the little voice inside my head.  

"Whatever," I replied.

And so little by little I drug out the figurines, the lights, and the Christmas notables.  I reminded Gracie, "Don't get caught up in the glitz.  Jesus is the reason for the season."  

I thought I heard her say, "Oh no... here we go again."

One of my favorites is this beautiful crystal tree, a gift from one of my favorite clients in my once thriving and opened hearing aid business, All About Hearing.  It sits on a platform that changes colors and it is beautiful to behold!  

To Be Continued...

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Ward Off Depression

Yesterday my lower back hurt pretty severely.  Walking was an effort.  But I find it better to stay somewhat active than sit with my feet up all day.  Also paining me were my left knee and my right foot.  These aches, too, made it hard.  And this weight!  I eat a cookie. I gain a pound.  It's my 66-year-old reality.  Arthritis in my hands - well, we don't want to even talk about that.  So much for ‘golden-year’ propaganda.




I watch Gracie pull herself up from the floor, her crooked back legs trembling, and it's all she can do to get them moving.  She tries to stretch them out but almost falls.   I pull myself up from my recliner and hobble to the door to let her out, and she looks at me with those confused eyes that say, "What is out?  Where is out?  Why would I want to go out?"  Then she gets lost under a table.


I do a few things to get the blood flowing before allowing myself back to the reclining position.  Ah, my chair.  Gracie circles around again and again and again, looking for that sweet spot on the carpet to park her poor, disabled butt, and then decides she'd instead rather be picked up and put on the couch.  I can almost read her body language, so off the recliner, holding onto my back and to the aid of my poor old girl. "There you go," I say, placing her comfortably onto the couch and making sure her behind is to the back, so she doesn't fall off (yes, it happens) butt first.  Back to the reclining position, I go in my chair and guess who jumps down onto the floor. 

To ward off depression from the state of things, husband and I have thrown ourselves into decorating for Christmas and giving Gracie much needed attention.  For me, it's working.  For him - not so much.  But we both keep plugging along.

Dear Diary,

I spent yesterday at the spa and I feel pretty.  Oh, so pretty.  Gracie.


Friday, December 10, 2021

The Smell of Christmas

Winds whistled through the windows of our four-room house, and I shivered beneath the thin blanket, unable to get back to sleep. It was Christmas morning, and I could see an ever-so-faint shade of light begin to rise in the sky. There were six of us kids home then, after the oldest married and moved out. Three boys slept on cots in the living room next to our bedroom, where we three girls slept. But for Christmas, we were all crammed into one room so as not to scare Santa while he worked his Christmas magic.

“Are you awake?” A sister whispered.

“Yea. I think Santa’s been here,” I said.

The brothers began chanting. “We want up! We want up!” My sisters and I joined in. We knew we were not allowed to go into the living room until Mom said so.

“We want up! We want up!”

The fire had gone out, and I could hear Mom shaking the grate of the potbelly stove in the living room. Warmth seeped underneath the door.

We stood in line.


I was anticipating the room of Christmas magic.

There, Santa had filled our socks with candies, nuts, and an orange. Draped icicles sparkled aside hot, enchanting bubble lights, and other bright reds, blues, and greens heated our long-needled pine tree bringing forth a fragrance one could only refer to as Christmas.


Wednesday, December 8, 2021

~~ Happy Birthday Summer ~~

The minute I laid eyes upon her, she stole my heart.

She loves dolls, stuffed animals, pets, fidget spinners, karate, and sparkly things.  She is always careful about other's feelings and would never say a cross word to anyone.  Now that she's ten, I'm noticing an eye-roll now and again.  But hey, she's  entering her pre-teen years so I just give an eye-roll right back.  

I'll always miss her years of innocence.  

But I love the young lady she is becoming.  Happy 10th Birthday to my Christmas angel.  

Dear Diary,

Mom and Dad are getting old and it's becoming harder and harder to take care of them.  Take yesterday for instance.  They just had to go for a walk.  And it was cold outside!  But I bit the bullet (even tho I really felt more like biting them) and accompanied them to the tracks so they could get some much needed exercise.  I say much needed because.  Well. Dad gets out of breath pretty easily and Mom - well - she's packed on a few pounds if ya know what I mean.  Can't be too healthy.  So I humor them.  They say these outings are for me.  BOL!  Yea, right.  

Mom has become very needy and she's always dropping to the floor to massage my back end and whisper sweet stuff in my ear. She's lonely. It makes her feel better, so I pretend to be comforted by the madness.

Then there's the ramp.  The bed.  The insane way she now has our bedroom arranged!  There are bed side rails and suitcases and pillows and tall furniture up against our bed to keep me from inadvertently jumping off where it is not safe to jump off.  I know it's because they're afraid of falling out of bed in their old age. But hey.  I go along with their delusions.  I seriously think they don't even know they're old.  

But really, it's tiring.  Oh, there's more.  There's so much more.  But I'm exhausted now and need to rest.  If I know Mom, it'll be another all-nighter where she can't sleep and lays the blame on me.  Later.  Gracie.