This year our children went to be with their other families for Christmas Day. Beth talked with Katie and Kirk, and worked out the idea of opening gifts on Sunday morning when I was off work.
On top of that, the Knutsons were very...friendly, asking us over one evening for dinner, and calling about going to the movies. Kirk, Sarah, and Joanna showed up on Thursday and the family time began.(This is actually a picture from winter of 06)
Beth is always thinking about her mother. She wonders if her mother is all right, and she thinks about ways she might make her circumstances better. Mom lives at a nursing home, alone after her husband's passing in October.
She finally figured out that we could take Mom to church on Christmas and then bring her over to the house afterward. This is something we have discussed several times, but Mom is very weak, wheelchair bound, and subject to physical constraints having to do with the bathroom.
Then the Lesondaks invited us to have Christmas dinner with them; I guess the word got out about our children.
The day went well, surprisingly well. I set up the church and then joined Beth at the nursing home to get Mom into the car and her wheel chair into the other car.
On the way over to the nursing home I had an artsy moment. I was sitting in the car at the light on 23rd Street, and WUTC was playing Handel's Messiah. "Every Valley shall be exalted..." sang the tenor, and the prophecy of Jesus' coming to a broken world was repeated in my thoughts. As I waited at the light, an ambulance came through the intersection and turned down Dodds, wailing into the distance. A young man in a red hoody walked alone down the sidewalk. It was all sad, with the message of scripture speaking into my emotions and thoughts. I cried a little.
After we got to the church, I scrambled to find a hearing impaired unit that worked and we were cool.
We had tea and a biscuit at out house afterward before going to the Lesondaks. "Beth, you've really made this your own house, now," Mom opined. "I always went for the cozy feel." We decided that she meant that Beth had taken down the fluffy curtains she had in the living room.
The time at the Lesondaks was warm, happy, and inclusive. Kathy and John are wonderful parents and loving people, after a career in missions.
We dropped Mom off and dropped into the lazy boys at home. A truly merry Christmas.