Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

Christmas Anticipation

Posted on: December 17th, 2012 by Donna 5 Comments

Christmas—the season of frenzied anticipation—is about a week away. Winter days here in East Texas start out chilly, and although their length grows shorter each week, the afternoon sun on my face is pleasantly warm as I walk to pick up the mail. The catalog avalanche burying my box since Halloween has rolled downhill to a gradual stop. Back in the office again, I open email and see on-line merchandizing still zips through cyberspace with offers of free shipping and tantalizing cautions to order by X to arrive before Christmas.

I’m too old to be shamed into decorating every nook and cranny of my home with gorgeous Christmas ornaments, Santa, reindeer, and similar paraphernalia by Thanksgiving afternoon. Or at all. On the rare occasion I venture out of my neighborhood, whether in stores large or small, I find gifts promoted as must have, newest, or best are picked over and reduced yet another few percent. The presents I bought, made, or promised are on the way to be opened elsewhere, in someone else’s time. My children are over forty, and grandchildren too far away to visit often, so it’s just sweetie and me again this year.

And as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. His coming is the reason I add the few touches I find most settling. Christmas poinsettia reflected in shiny gold placemats, fresh greenery and berries circling a fat red candle, and a small lit tabletop tree strung with tiny garlands of silver and pearls. After the sun stripes sky and lake tonight with orange and pink and blue and then slips behind the distant hills I plug in the tree. It shines while I prepare supper, waits for me through the evening, whispers and beckons as my husband retires to our bedroom.

It’s in that hour I sit in a dark room lit only by a silly little tree and reminisce and allow myself to feel all the hymns of love and joy that recount His birth. I am not frenzied, but I almost tremble in anticipation. Oh, Holy Night divine.


Posted on: April 27th, 2012 by Donna 3 Comments

I feel like it’s almost Christmas. I’ve had my bath and pulled on my favorite nightie. I’ve settled by the tree, been dazzled by the multicolored lights winding through the branches up to the ceiling. I’ve stayed awake through every one of the twelve records in our album of Dickens’ Christmas Carol. And even though I’ve heard it every Christmas I can remember, I still shivered at the Ghost of Christmas past as he shook his heavy chains. As Daddy slept in his chair I rattled presents that looked as though they might be mine.

My mother has called me to the kitchen and said it was time for bed. I’ve hugged her extra tight, leaned around her waist close to the big pottery bowl, lifted the edge of the towel off the top, closed my eyes and inhaled. Puffy coffee cake dough oozed the distinctive scent of yeast. Nearby, my favorite blue mixing bowl held sugar and cinnamon. I’ve smiled up at Mama and she’s nodded okay. I pinched off a big wad of soft white dough, swirled it through the cinnamon sugar and popped it in my mouth.

Mama swatted my behind and told me to get on upstairs and brush my teeth. She and Daddy would come up to hear my prayers and say goodnight. After they turned out the light I’d hum Silent Night and listen for our car backing out of the driveway as Daddy left to play organ for Christmas Eve service. I’d stare at the ceiling envisioning the wonders of the next morning until I could no longer keep my eyes open.

And if this were that night, I’d wake up tomorrow morning to find a big box of my books from Tate Publishing Company. It took six years to get to this point. I’ve read and proofed the story, rewrote and edited it some more, sighed over the cover choices, gasped in delight at seeing the layout, and cried over the gracious endorsements. A Song in Every Silence will be here very soon and the waiting will be over. It will indeed be a morning of wonder.