Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A January Christmas in Murfreesboro....


As most of you know, Mother went into the hospital very early Christmas morning, so our Christmas on Church Street had to be postponed. Never fear - a week later, though a little weak and tired, our beautiful Queen was back on her throne, presiding over the belated, but time-honored Christmas event.


We gathered around the kitchen table for prayer. We stood in the long line of about 40 people, waiting to fill our plates. We sat at the dinning room and kitchen tables and all over the rest of the house, eating and chatting with all those sitting around us. We looked at old photos. We tolerated the joyful noises of the children. The men watched football until it was time to go to the living room and participate in the gift exchange with the young boys playing Santa Claus. You could hardly hear yourself talk through the thank you's that were being yelled across the room.










It was sweet how the torn wrapping paper was being picked up almost before it hit the floor and the bows were carefully put into another bag to be untied and rolled up so they could be reused next year. (Mama's wrapping is part of her gift, done with artistry and with the most elaborate of beautiful, reusable ribbons!) The effort was to honor her, and to do what they could to help Nana continue with what she does best.

After the gifts disappeared from under the tree, we tried to clean up and not stay too late so Mom could get some rest...I said, "tried." It was hard to leave!

For the first time, my bunch headed over to a Bed and Breakfast a few blocks away. The kids had such a busy day that they were already sleeping by the time Grandad and I got there. Grandad was tired too, but Kim, Tom and I stayed up in the living room until around 2:00 a.m., talking, reminiscing and sharing good thoughts of family.








The following morning we dressed and took a long walk on the very same streets that I use to walk in my youth. We headed to the Historic Oakland Mansion. It is an impressive antebellum home, just a few blocks from where we were staying. After the Union army took over the mansion during the Civil War, the surrendering papers for the battle of Stone's River were signed in that very house. I worked there as a high school sorority pledge to get my required civic volunteer hours. I also used to go to the well spring on the property for solitude and reflection. I remember thinking I was truly part of that place. I enjoyed showing it to my daughter and to her children. It wasn't open, but I do plan to visit again when it is.










We walked back, packed, and made a few pictures in the wedding arbor that was directly behind our cottage before leaving for lunch at Mother's.

Mom had had a pretty bad night after eating things that didn't agree with her the day before, but she was gracious and we enjoyed our time with her before leaving and letting her recover.

As always, she stood at the door after we said our goodbyes, and watched us leave. At this point I always look back, and somehow I know that she knows, I am touching her with my heart.


Thanks, Mom, for 61 years of Christmas memories.

27 comments:

juju said...

Another beautiful blog! It was a very good day. Thank you for the walk in time you always give. Love you!

Queenie said...

Somehow, the Lord gave us faith to take the next step, assurance that even if I had stumbled that he
picked me up and put me back on the path. He gave me confidence, and even a little strength for
that night of wonder and magic.It is very hard to learn the lesson of the ways of change and growth.
The breezes blow where they will: silently, invisibly, with great
power. Unlike this wind WE can be tracked or traced. Always..........Always...........
the tracks lead home, to love,
to honor, to family. Love is a gift given. There was so many of
those gifts, lets pass it forward,
don't keep it too long it might
be like a gift certificate and
expire. It may lose its value if
we don't pass it forward.
Now, is all of life we can hold at any moment. It cannot be banked,
invested, hoarded or saved,
SPEND IT.
Mother

family said...

It sure did bless me to be at Nana's for Christmas this year. This family is authentic and sincere. Our roots run so deep--indicative to the 40 plus that show up year over year.....it humbles me to see such love and respect for each other. Being there was the best gift of the season......bo

family said...

*Mom, sister, your daughter and my daughters...It makes my smile when you join me with your comments. Thank you for walking through this life with me.

Merry

Leigh said...

Christmas for me is another time to reflect in all that I am thankful for. I have always known how blessed I was to have the wonderful family I have, yet every year I am reminded yet again, and every year I am even more thankful.

Beautiful blog.

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