I had some personal things to do today, so not a lot of time was spent on Christmas, except for this afternoon when Kate went with me to the nursing home to visit my great Aunt Lillie. I was delighted to have someone go along with me to bring in a little extra Christmas loveliness. We brought gifts for Aunt Lillie, and picked up a crate of Clementine oranges on the way, to pass out to the residents.
We found Aunt Lillie sleeping on the single bed in her small, crowded, shared room. She jumped up quickly when she heard our voices talking to Susan, her roommate (Susan is always delighted to see me coming too!). I introduced Aunt Lillie to Kate and after chatting for a few minutes we gave her a couple of my carefully wrapped gifts. She seemed delighted with the pretty, soft pink pajamas and black turtleneck sweater (I told her now we could look alike because I always wear black!), but mostly she liked the two flashing Christmas light necklaces that hung, flashing around my neck!
Soon an aide came in the room to tell Aunt Lillie that she was going to be taken on a bus trip to look at the lights and to bundle up because it was cold outside. Well, we dressed her in her new turtleneck and layered it with a vest and a jacket. Then I took off one of my necklaces and put it around her neck. She was thrilled and we started singing "This Little Light of Mine, I'm going to let it shine!" Together, with Kate, we sang it again to Susan and laughed at how festive we all felt.
On the way out, Lillie, Kate and I passed out the oranges to everyone we met. Some hurried to ask for one, some wouldn't let go of the box when it was put in front of them to select one of the fruits, some had a hard time picking one up and getting one out of the box at all, but we gave them until they were gone. Joyfully wishing everyone a MERRY CHRISTMAS, with as much love and sincerity as we could muster. When we got to the front, we kissed Aunt Lillie and left through the alarm controlled glass doors.
We were quiet when we got in the car. A tear fell from my eye and, with understanding, Kate lovingly reached over and put her hand on top of mine.
I guess Christmas was in this day after all.
(I'm sorry I didn't get a picture of Aunt Lillie in her new black sweater and the blinking Christmas lights around her neck - I somehow left my camera at home, but it indeed made her face shine.)