Simple Things

“When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things – not the great occasions – give off the greatest glow of happiness.” 

Bob Hope

A week from today is Christmas Eve.

I’ve been working on Christmas cards for some time now. It’s taking me a while because I’m doing them very differently this year.

The idea has been brewing over this past year as I browsed my way through many estate sales. Every sale had a collection of unclaimed family pictures. To see the different family celebrations recorded and stacked in boxes broke my heart over and over again.

After the first few sales, I realized I had my own stack of pictures sitting in albums in my office closet. I knew odds were high they’d stay in that very spot until Michael and I made our next move or–God forbid– have our own estate sale.

Going through pictures for my stories sparked the idea to make my own cards. Each individual card would be personalized to feature photos of the person the card will be sent to or spotlight an event they’d remember.

It has been a time consuming project. Most of the photos take me down a road filled with memories. The surprising thing about this project is I know these old pictures filed away in a dark closet will be on their way to bring a smiles to my loved ones. Even though we are miles apart, I know we will be walking down memory road together.

So simple…

“Christmas is a necessity. There has to be at least one day of the year to remind us that we’re here for something else besides ourselves.” 

Eric Severeid

I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace~

The Religion of Kindness

“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.” 

Dalai Lama XIV

Michael and I have spent a lot of time these past few weeks in waiting rooms.

Our waits have yielded good results and we are thankful.

I don’t think everyone in those places we shared experienced the same good results. Many of the most senior patients seemed to be waiting alone or with an aide after being dropped off by an agency bus. Each little person seemed alone and sad–which made me sad as well. How did our society get so busy we’ve forgotten our elders?

I had time to study some of those faces. Their expressions have stayed with me this week. I couldn’t help wondering how they’re doing. At the end of the day, did they have loved ones to talk with about the tests, the results, the future, and their fears?

These experiences and memories were good reminders for me to be kind.

My heart asks you to be the same.

The Test

Oh, yes, I’ve reached those golden days

You hear so much about;

I don’t feel any older yet, 

But will one day, no doubt. 

The sky is still a lovely blue, 

The rose is just as sweet. 

Each day is like another chance

To make my life complete. 

Sure, there’s hardship, sorrow and pain,

Who thought there wouldn’t be? 

But now I know it’s just a test

To find the worth in me. 

~Betty Irean Loeb

I am…

B…simply being. 

~Peace~

Thank you, Michael Hibdon, for sending me pictures of our lovely pansies and violas. I was so proud of you yesterday as you helped the little elderly people who waited with us in clinic. God bless you. I love you. 

Timeless Gifts

“I was discovering that the most precious gift someone can give us is time, because what gives time its value is death.” 

Ingrid Betancourt, Even Silence Has an End: My Six Years of Captivity in the Colombian Jungle

My first Christmas present arrived yesterday.

I debated about one minute before opening it.

Inside I found three perfect gifts–a heart rock, a handmade Christmas ornament, and a candle.

What made them so special?

The time invested by my friend who sent them my way.

The ornament took Mary a lot of time to make. I knew she was probably thinking of some of our escapades while she stitched away. The heart rock was a gift of happenstance–found on a hike with her grandson, Sam. This special rock told me she’d thought of me throughout her day. The candle is a gift of a candle is always special because I love the warmth and light they represent to me.

The most precious gift of all? The gift of life-long friendships.

Thank you, Mary. I love you.

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Thank you, God, for the gift of friends.

To be known, and yet loved is a blessing.

Thank you for all those who see me, 

Who seek to understand, support and nurture me.

I am forever grateful to be able to come just as I am, in every season

To walk in intimacy and love with others.

This is the richest blessing, the greatest gift and the beautiful legacy of your walk and life amongst us.

Thank you so much for all my friends and loved ones. 

Amen.   ~Author Unknown~

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~

Preparing

“One of the few times in a man’s life when he is not full of shit!!

The morning of a colonoscopy. Enough said!” 

Jim Lawrence

Another benefit of getting older is the opportunity to prepare for a colonoscopy.

Since this is not my first experience, I’ve devised little tricks to make this day go a little smoother–no pun intended.

This morning I entertained Micheal by asking him the riddles I found my popsicle sticks. Who knew? Made me think of those summer days when my sisters and I would set on our front steps, eating as fast as we could so we didn’t get drips on our summer shirts. We didn’t have the riddles, though.

My afternoon schedule is much less entertaining.

Just a few minutes ago I refilled my wine glass from the gallon of liquid I get to enjoy and complete over the next 4.5 hours.  The clock is winding down much faster than my wine glass.

I’ve had a  lot of experience watching the level of liquid in my wine glass. It’s puzzling to me why the level is so slow in responding to the huge sips I’m taking in order to complete my task by 6 p.m.

I’m pretty sure if this glass was filled with a nice Merlot I’d be well into my second bottle by now.

This particular conundrum may call for more research.

I think I’ll be ready by Saturday.

“All worries are less with wine.” 

Amit Kalantri, Wealth of Words

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~

 

 

 

A Remembering Time

“The people you love become ghosts inside of you, and like this you keep them alive.” 

Rob Montgomery

I sigh as I begin to write today.

This time of year there are always many people meandering through my mind.

Time has not dulled the loss very much. I miss them.

This Thanksgiving I had the idea to light a large votive candle for all those people I missed. As the flame flickered, I visualized each person, thanking them for being in my life.

As the flame burned throughout the day, I felt the presence of those I’d pictured in my mind earlier. The warm light from the candle eased its way into those empty places in my heart, leaving me feeling comforted and very loved.

Thank you, God.

“Mrs. Casey, do you love Christmas? 

Well you know, she answered reflectively, Christmas can be a sad time for people too. It’s a remembering time for us older ones. We remember the people who are gone.

Oh, I never thought of that, I told her in surprise.

Well that’s youth for you, she said; you don’t start to look back over your shoulder until there is something to look back at, and around Christmas I tend to think of the Christmases past and the people gone with them.” 

Alice Taylor, An Irish Country Christmas

I am…

B…simply being.

~Peace~