By the time you receive this week’s edition, you may be stretching out in your recliner ready for a post-holiday nap, dog curled up under your arm, scraps of wrapping paper lying around on the floor, a string of lights on the tree blinking a few times, before going dark.
Maybe you’re thinking about the left-overs in the fridge (especially the potential of a wide slice of chocolate cream pie surviving other scavenging family members perusal). After all you did stick it in the far recesses of the refrigerator, behind the left-over lump of stuffing and the big turkey drumstick. Maybe it escaped plunder.
Your afternoon has been filled with quiet thoughts of Christmas 2020 and you might be wondering if you can return the sweater from your auntie with the tractor on the front in bright Packer green — when you remember that she knit the thing herself. No returns in the land of hand-mades.
Aunt Kitty drew your name this year and you knew from the get-go, that wasn’t good. She has the kindest heart and the sweetest smile, but her taste? You’ll wear it when she comes over … once.
Not to be an ingrate, you do appreciate the hours of knitting it must have taken her - and she is a grand old soul.
(Feeling ashamed of yourself, you remember that you’ve never knit one single thing. You were never able to concentrate for long enough or to count stitches and keep the tension equal. The sweater you tried to make had one arm far longer than the other and the neck hole was far too small to push one’s head through. Crafts are just not in your wheelhouse.)
As the afternoon drifts past, your quiet thoughts move to those loved ones who are gone. Those who you miss terribly during the holiday season.
Your blessed mom and dad. Your beloved older brother. The friend you thought you’d have forever.
You remember the Christmases of your childhood. Decorating cookies with your siblings, heading for the sledding hill with your Flexible Flyer tucked under your arm. Hot chocolate and candy canes.
Just before you drift off for yet another cat nap, you remember the leftover chocolate cream pie and its vulnerable location. You’d better quietly sneak out into the kitchen and grab a fork.
At first you think it is gone. You’ve heard the refrigerator door countless times this afternoon. Has it survived? Yes! There it is! The cream topping looks a bit deflated, but it is intact. Ahhhhhh! Maybe it is a sign that the year 2021 will be a better one.
Have you survived another chaotic Christmas?
You remember that there were to be meteor showers tonight and maybe even the Christmas star!
You grab your jacket, hat and gloves and cross the yard to stand in an area with the least extraneous light. Inside the windows steam over — you can see a card table being set up and the new board games being studied. But, out here you can only hear the wind in the pines and the dark sky above.
There are meteor showers to be seen as you crank your neck back. They are more beautiful than any electrified lights. Gifts from the heavens.
There at the edge of the horizon is the great and powerful Christmas star!
It hasn't been seen in 800 years. But, there it is glowing and glimmering out there alone. Like it has a message for all of us.
I like to think the message is something like this:
Here is what started it all. The birth of a sweet baby in a rustic stable. A baby, whose small face glows in the light from his halo. This baby was born with a mission to go forth and share the peaceful news. Look for the goodness and the innocence. Look for love and look for ways to share the kindness.
Look for the simple and the pure.
Happy holidays my dearest gentle readers! Go forth and be kind.