Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I grew up in a family that put a lot of importance on Christmas. We have always gotten together, shared gifts, eat, and just enjoyed time spent together. I had a
wonderful Christmas every year but one. That is a story unto itself.
When we were growing up, we did not get a toy every time we went to town like lots
of children do now. We didn't even ask because the answer was no. However, when it
came to Christmas we got a ton of toys. Even during years that were really difficult
for my mother and father, we had great Christmas'. In 1982, things were almost as bad
as they are now, but Travis and I never knew it. We had baseball gloves, bicycles, and sticks. Back then, that was all you needed to be happy. But that Christmas we got an Atari! We were the first kids to get an Atari. I also got a BB gun. During the worst financial time of my father's life, we still had a wonderful Christmas.
When I was about 12 or 13 we started decorating our home. We did a little decorating to start with. Then the next year, a little more. Then over the next 20 years, it just got ridiculous. We put up over 50,000 lights a year now. We have Santas, toy soldiers, Charlie Brown kids, Blow up things, and if you stand still in our yard long enough, we will wrap lights around your ass before you know what happened. It is a lot of work. But you know what, we don't put them up for us. Travis and I like them, but sometimes the amount of effort to put them up is overwhelming. We simply put them up for everyone else. If we did not put those lights up one year, a lot of people would be devastated. So, to keep the world a better place, we still put them up.
Our father was someone that everyone would turn to for help. He was easy to talk
to and always gave everyone the benefit of the doubt. I can't remember a Christmas that he did not raise money for needy family. For about his last 10 years, every Christmas he would bag fruit and ride around our community and give it to the elderly people in our community. It was amazing how many of them came to his funeral. Its also amazing that almost all of those people are passed away themselves.
Deddy loved the lights. He loved the process and he loved taking a moment to look
at what had been accomplished once we were finished. He loved that fact that others
enjoyed coming down Boyd Brafford Dr. and looking at all the Christmas light.
He is the main reason we still put the lights up. Maybe he does not even know that
we do it. But then again, maybe he does. And if he does, I know he is proud that we
still do it. Not a day goes by that I don't think about and miss my father. And for that, I will probably put those damned lights up for as long as I am physically able. I think I will also always love Christmas as much as he did.
God bless you and your family this Christmas and I hope the New Year brings all of you much prosperity, happiness and many many blessings.