I am average 5’5 and 115 pounds. I have green eyes and reddish blonde hair, I work in an office, I am married to a wonderful man, and I like to consider myself a nice person.
I love watching the snow fall in the winter while my favorite candle twinkles from my kitchen table, Michael Buble’ sings from my CD player and I reach for a blanket and cuddle close to my husband. I like starry nights, scrap booking, reading in general, and doing something to the best of my ability to the point that I am exhausted from trying to make it the best it possibly can be.
I like walking in the park with my big yellow Labrador tugging at the leash and the autumn leaves falling down all around me signaling change in the world. I like black-and-white photographs and capturing a special moment through a picture, and the way a brightly colored bouquet of Gerber daisies can look so sweet, and yet elegant at the same time. I like psychology and I am the one who will sit and analyze a situation till I am blue in the face. I think piano music is one of the most beautiful sounds in the world just second to a beautiful church choir singing old familiar Christmas carols. I like hot apple cider on a cold winter morning, sitting in bookstores for hours, and the way the mountains of New Mexico look as if they are just awakening to life in the early morning hours from a hot air balloon. I could go on, when I sit down and think about it, there are so many little quirky things that I just love. But they all make me — well . . . me.
But more than all that, especially at this time of year, I realize how much I love my family and friends. I love my mother’s hands, beautiful, weathered and calloused from years of hard work, but perfect for wiping a tear from my face, or holding my hand and squeezing the day of my wedding right before I got ready to walk down the aisle. I love the way my great nephew, Daniel, smiles at me for no apparent reason whenever I play with him. I love the way my sister Christina smiles when she laughs really hard, the way my sister Ronda says hello with her whole face, I love the way my husband hugs me and the way his arm feels when they are wrapped around me at night. I love the way all my beautiful friends faces light up when they smile, and the elation I could hear in Kelli’s voice when I called her after she texted me to tell me she and Derek were officially engaged, or the look of happiness I will see on Jamie’s face as she graduates from college and takes her next steps into the world in just a few days and then later that night the looks of love that will be on Danny and Allison’s faces as they exchange marriage vows surrounded by family and friends. Christmas is full of fun traditions and memories that make me smile. Being around my family and friends this time of year is like being surrounded by a net of warmth and hope.
I don’t know what this year has been like for you. For me it’s been pretty great I got married and joined my heart with the man of my dreams but there has been some heartache as well. I see a string of broken hearts all around me. I remember saying goodbye to my nephews who are being shipped to Iraq, my brother in law’s car accident, my friend’s little daughter spending enormous amounts of time in the hospital for a disease the doctors couldn’t pin point at first and I can think of at least a few more moments I’d love to just erase. People I know who are following Him with their whole hearts are still feeling discouragement, doubt, and fear.
Still, if there’s any time of the year we can remember to cling to hope, it’s this time of year. Like the huge bright star shining in the night a couple thousand years ago, He still burns in our hearts. We are His and we are so loved. I love all of my friends to the point that I experience their pain and joys right alongside of them at times, but I still know nothing of what God experiences with us everyday. Every thought we have every little twinge of fear, happiness or pain He is right there with us. My prayer this Holiday season is that I never forget that.