As you all know we just celebrated the birth of our Savior. It was a great time for my family. We had my beautiful grandmother stay with us for three wonderful days. She is 90 years old and we don't know how many more years we will be blessed to have her here with us. There is something about a great-grandparent and children that makes Christmas more special somehow.
The children were soooo excited to have my grandmother stay with us. My littlest was excited that grandma-great was going to sleep in her bed and she (my youngest) would get the chance to sleep in big sister's bedroom on her own special cot.
If there is one thing that my children love to do it is read. And, if you enter my door, and you are over a certain age, the only thing you are good for is reading stories. Now, I mean this in the most respectful way possible. You see, my father-in-law has been known to read up to 15 stories in one sitting. It doesn't matter that he has read the same book time and time again, the children love to listen to it yet again.
My grandmother was no exception to this unspoken rule of the home. However, my grandmother's eyesight doesn't work as well as it did a few years ago, and she has trouble seeing the words to read. My youngest wouldn't take no for an answer though and remedied that situation right quick.
You see, she is only 4 years old but she decided to sit grandma-great down on the couch and proceeded to "read" her the favorite book Go Dog, Go by Dr. Seuss. (Ok, so it wasn't word for word, but my baby read it in her own special way. She used voice inflections and everything!) It was the most precious thing that I ever did see. I am sooo grateful for the opportunity that my babies have the chance to know who their great-grandmother is and, better yet, have the opportunity to develop a relationship with her. We can't wait until the snow melts so we can go feed the ducks at the park with her again!
Today we held our yearly family Christmas party. We had a wonderful time reading a story, stuffing our bellies until popping status, playing bingo, exchanging gifts in a raucous tradition of open-and-steal-till-you-get-what-you-want (with extra trading on the side afterwords), and the famous singing of The Twelve Days of Christmas.
The singing has been going on for as long as I can remember. We all "count off" to see which part we will be singing this year, split into said parts, line up and sing like there is no tomorrow. My one cousin stated today, "I can't sing!" I replied, "That's ok. No one in this family can sing!" (Well, except for my Uncle, who is in a band and actually leads this family rendition of the beloved train wreck, I mean, Christmas carol.) The point of the carol is to make a joyful noise (and I mean NOISE) and have fun while doing it. Over the years we have gotten many renditions of this carol, from the original version to the Redneck version (which brings "death glares" from the conductor your way). Any way it is sung, we all have a grand time. I hope we always carry on this tradition. After all, it just isn't a family party without a badly sung, off-key, tone-deaf, key-changing (often in the same note) sing-a-long of The Twelve Days of Christmas. I once recorded it and it takes your breath away!
(This was done several years ago, and we even had the benefit of the piano that year, although that is not always the case. We normally have to sing acapella. I really don't know how much the piano helped, but I guess it kept us somewhat in-tune that year. This also shows the very last verse sung, this is to help protect your ears and the innocent singers/family members.)
I hope that as you wrap up this wonderful time of year, you have the opportunity to reflect on your family and see who has been special in your life. Love and cherish them always. Time is precious and you never know just how long you have with that special someone. Be sure to say "I Love You" often, better yet, show that love for them in the things you do for them.
I wish you each a very Happy New Year!