hold close

It’s Christmas eve eve. Wanted to wish all the Chicken Wingers the merriest of Christmases!

The terribly sad events in Connecticut gave me new vision. My vision improved to 20/20 as the holy holiday drew nearer.

Enjoyed singing for old folks. My retirement singing group must have visited every retirement/nursing/alzheimer’s home in this town. I savored holding every arthritic hand.

Led the Christmas merriment at the facility where my mother lived. So many ties and lovely memories there. They are kind to ask me back every year.

Had some help with Nancy, Rich and the Christmas Bichon, Sophie.

Sophie enjoying Nancy’s rendition of ‘O, Holy Night’.

As I was standing at the podium about to lead ‘Silver Bells’, a male resident walked behind me….patted me on the a## and said I was lots wider back there than I was last year. Really. Made me laugh so hard, I teased him mercilessly about being ‘naughty’.

Santa agreed. The guy was naughty.

Santa ‘n me!

Our church choir had a special Christmas musical with local musicians.

Was privileged to be a part of this glorious day of celebrating Christ’s birth. We talked about the deaths of the innocents in Connecticut that Sunday morning. Talked about how the light is coming into the darkness. Aren’t we longing for the light this year? This world feels less and less like home to me.

While I’m here, I’ll savor moments like these.

Baby G and me Christmas Eve 2011. Holding close my precious grandson.

Peanut and G.

The grandson is 15 months old now. He has his own pony. He’s learned to walk and he can sing ‘EEE-EYE-EEE-EYE-OOOOOO! Amazing! The year has flown by.

I’m grateful for my Sprouts and for the long-suffering Texan. I need to tell them ‘I love you’ more often.

I enjoy this ridiculous wiener dog.

Roxy Doxy is worried about the meaning of ‘naughty’.

She shows me something of God’s love. I like to think He wags his tail thinking about seeing me and He would give me a big, slobbery lick if He were here.

I think He would hold me (and you!) close, too.

May your Christmas be brimming with fun times with your loved ones and lots of happiness.

The light is coming.

Be blessed.

Christmas-y love to all.

gracias Senor!

All of you witnessed it.  The capsule being hoisted out of the ground with a previously entombed miner.  Thirty-three times (plus the rescue workers) we witnessed a miraculous rebirth.  Another chance at life.  Miners pointing to the sky, or making the sign of the cross, or kissing Mother Earth.  Some miners fell to their knees in humble, thankful prayer.  Made me think I should spend more time there….not in Chile, but on my knees.

The shirts with the word Gracias Senor! (thank the Lord, or thank God) emblazened across the front seemed appropros.

Lots of dedicated folks deserve a big Gracias shout-out.  No doubt about it.  Thanking El Senor is a good place to start.

I haven’t been lifted out of a dark, hot mine into the blinding light….not literally.  But most days I recognize the blessing of warm sunshine in my life.

So…today….Friday….is Gracias Senor! Day.  I’m giving the Big Man a shout out for those miners.  I’m giving Him an extra shout out for the love of my family.  I’m even shoutin’ out for the opportunity to blog.  Yup….and for you, too.

You got a gracias for El Senor?   Don’t be shy….leave your shout out in the comments and we’ll all be grateful together.

Have a glorious weekend.

sunset windmill

exploring the dark and dank

No, no….the title of this post is not about my colonoscopy and esophogeal scope today.  Let me tell you, interweb friends, git ‘r done…if you need to!  Not a big deal.  Nothin’ to be askeerd of.  Fantastic drugs.  Do it.  Just woke up from the greatest nap EV-AH!  No big problems and nothing that can’t be dealt with.  It was all good in the end.  I’m grateful.
All this scoping has me thinking of dark, dank and tight places….like the cave we have been exploring with our sprouts every summer for about…..the last 20 years or so.  The Texan gets the honor of going in first.  He’s a seasoned caver!  That’s a nice way of saying old.
He has dangled a rope with knots to assist with the cave descent. Yours truly has been down there.  I really have, but this time I wanted to document this for YOU, so I stayed top side.  You’re very, very welcome.  I take my descriptive blogging role incredibly seriously.  Down goes the athletic sprout-in-law.

Be careful.  Don’t slip and fall in the stream!
The brave Sprout is last inside. She hopes the two previous spelunkers will cushion her likely fall.  Smart Sprout.

This is a tight turn the explorers must make.  Pick your poison:  scale the rocks above the swift stream, or resign yourself to wade in the cold water on the bottom.  I think our cavers took the high road.
The Texan proudly poses after making it half way.
Victorious, the Texan emerges from the cave downstream.  It’s quite a climb to get out of there with no help up top!
The Sprout emerges next.  Notice the assistance from up top and from ‘down under’.  Hey, watchit Sprout-in law!
Lastly, the in-law emerges. Everyone is exhausted, slimy and safe. The trek through the cave took about 40 minutes.

Did you enjoy your journey through the cave?  Sometimes dark places are scary, and I prefer keeping my hands over my eyes.  The task is better undertaken with friends who can encourage and help.  You can even fall on them if need be!  When spelunking it is good to:

1.  Be strong and confident.
2.  Have a light to illuminate your way.
3.  Have some friends along.
4.  Be in the presence of your Dad.

Blessings and spelunky love to all this week.