I love this time of the year. I always have. However, the way I look at Christmas has changed a lot since I was a kid. Travis and I used to get up by at least 3:00 A.M. and we would not go back to sleep until the next night. We were always grateful for what we got and still have many of the toys we had growing up. As we got older, the “toys” we wanted got bigger. Both of us owe Mama and Deddy a LOT of gratitude for always making our Christmas so wonderful. Well, I was always good so Santa Claus rewarded me justly. However, Travis was always bad but he still got just as much as I did or more!
I still truly enjoy the Christmas programs that come on. “Merry Christmas Charlie Brown” to me is honestly the greatest cartoon ever made. I think we need Linus to go to a lot of places and straighten everyone out with his monologue. “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “A Christmas Story,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” etc. never grow old to me. I enjoy hearing Spring Hill’s cantata every year. I often watch Christmas concerts on TV believe it or not. I like to watch bits of the parades that come on TV. I love to see the Christmas decorations all over the place from people’s homes, to towns, to the malls. As I have traveled the country during the holidays the last couple of years, I have seen some awesome decorations. One thing I have really missed the last few years with all of my traveling has been putting up all the Christmas with Travis. I hope to get back to that one day.
As I have grown older, my view of Christmas has evolved. I honestly just enjoy being around family and friends. I enjoy giving people gifts. It disappoints me when I can’t think of something awesome to get somebody. But as life grows longer, it’s harder to get someone an awesome gift every year. Now we have a niece and 2 nephews to get things for. It’s a great feeling to give a child a gift that they like. For my entire life, we have gone to Mema Cameron’s on Christmas Eve and Mema Brafford’s on Christmas morning. After Maria and I were married, we started going to Mr. and Mrs. Stewarts on Christmas Eve too. Those memories will be treasured forever. The years have gone by, both Papa’s have passed away, Deddy is no longer with us and Mr. and Mrs. Stewart both passed away. However, their memories live on and I believe the fact that we continue to get together honors their memories.
I’ll never forget the last Christmas Deddy was with us. I did not give it enough thought but I never imagined he would not be here the next Christmas. Travis and I gave him a “Lionel” Train to put up in his office. Things happened so fast that year he never got the train up. We’ve never opened the box. The Christmas before he was sick, he had the first 2 rings that Mama ever gave him resized; the first one to fit me and the second to fit Travis. It was a wonderful gesture that means more to me the older I get.
Christmas gives us a time to relax and reflect on the year. I love the fact that for a few days, most of the world takes a deep breath and pauses for while. Although there are a lot of bad things going on in the world on a daily basis, we all have a lot to be grateful for. Everyone should make a point to spend time with loved ones during Christmas. You just never know from one year to the next who will still be here. Friday night, we had the party of the year…”Uncle Boyd’s Christmas Party”. I start getting asked about this party usually in September. As the years have passed, the crowd may have changed slightly, but the core remains the same. A night to fellowship, playing some cards, a little ping pong, some darts, and hear about how awesome the Benhaven Bulldogs were years ago. Ironically, Uncle Boyd was made an honorary member of the Boone Trail Pioneer Club and presented with a coonskin hat!
The part of Christmas that I love the most is the recount of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It is truly the greatest story to ever occur and we should all be grateful that it did. If you haven’t read Luke 2; 1-14, I would encourage you to do that in the very near future. If you’re already read it, read it again.
As I wrap up my Christmas blog, I would remind you all to say MANY prayers for the Sandy Hook community in Newton, Connecticut. That is a tragedy of epic proportions and it’s a whole other topic altogether. That town will never be the same but we can continue to pray for healing during such a tragically difficult time. I would like wish all of you and your families a wonderful and Very Merry Christmas. I pray that you are all blessed with peace and serenity during the Christmas season.
And remember….“Glory to God in the highest; and on earth peace, good will toward men.”……That’s what Christmas is all about Charlie Brown.