Good morning everyone. Well, Christmas is just days away and as I sit here in my living room, I cannot help but think back in time. I guess my thoughts are brought on by the saying :what we do out of love". I remember all the years of growing up as a young girl and racing home on the last day of school to decorate the Christmas tree with my Grandfather. I can remember bursting through the door only to be greeted by the aroma of Christmas. The smell of the fresh pine tree, hot chocolate and freshly popped popcorn. It was a thrill to string the popcorn, drink the cocoa and listen to Bing Crosby on the phonograph player. My grandfather would put on the bubble lights and grandma would carefully unwrap all the glass ornaments. We would trim the tree circling the finished product with popcorn strings and finish it all off carefully with tinsel. Oh, what a memory!
When I married...the unfortunate choosing of a bad tree a couple years in a row caused my husband to want only fake trees. If disturbed me each year thinking that my girls wouldn't get the same experience of a real tree. It bothered me so much...that one year...I secretly purchased a small 3 1/2 foot tree and hid it from my family. We decorated the fake tree and on Christmas Eve, upon arriving home and putting the girls to bed...I revealed to my husband what I had hiding in the shed. I made him bring in the tree and I had secretly gotten everything ready to decorate it. I had decided that I wanted it to be the very first thing that my girls saw when them opened their bedroom door on Christmas morning. So very quietly, we decorated this wonderful fresh tree in the hallway right outside of the bedroom door. The thrill of them seeing that sparkling, popcorn trimmed, tinsel clad tree had me lying awake all night. I put a note on the tree wishing them Merry Christmas from Santa and began a trail of presents that started under that tree into the dining room, circling around the dining room table leading into the living room and under the main tree.
When Christmas morning arrived...I was pleasantly surprised with the squeals of joy that came from the girls when the saw that tree. The smell was just amazing...and the sight of the tree and two VERY thrilled little girls was truly one of my finest Christmas gifts ever. They talked about it all day long and for many years to come. Today as I sit here thinking about that day...it brings a smile to my face. Today, there are no longer children in the house for Christmas. The house is empty with only memories left of those precious years and those golden memories. What I did for my love for them...was a gift for me as well. A gift that lasted over time. When I look at my tree and gaze into the lights...I still remember the way that small little pine tree gave way to a very special Christmas. I don't remember what was in all those boxes trailing through the house...but I have never forgotten the tree and the smile on my girls faces.
It is no wonder that when I hear the words to the song by Bing Crosby..."When you trim your Christmas Tree...think of me...beside you." That Grandma and Grandpa and my daughters are with me in spirit.
Oh Christmas Tree....Oh Christmas Tree...HOW LOVELY ARE YOUR BRANCHES.