Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Countdown Day 2

4 ... 3 ... 2 ...

Dec 3 bake cookies with daughter, mom, sisters, nieces, nephew
Dec 5 write annual letter, begin mailing cards
Dec 12 think about getting a tree
Dec 13 help with a club Christmas party, bring cranberry juice and dessert
Dec 19 dust banister, hang stockings pine-garland and lights
Dec 20 think about getting that tree
Dec 21 wash sheets, prepare guestroom, deliver cookies and gifts to a club
Dec 21 invite our adult children to Christmas Eve dinner
Dec 22 shop for modest gifts with hubby, take time for lunch
Dec 22 attend beautiful wedding of friends, enjoy dinner, dance
Dec 23 write and mail remaining Christmas cards
Dec 23 wrap a gift for our mail lady, mail a book to a friend
Dec 23 clean house, get groceries, consider a last-minute dash for a tree?
Dec 24 cook dinner, bake chocolate cake
Dec 24 gather to worship, share late evening meal with our adult children
Dec 25 meet loved ones for coffee, gather to worship
Dec 25 lunch with our children and my family of origin

The stemware and holiday mugs, cloth napkins and winter stoneware wait for me, ready to replace the coming and going of Christmas cards on the dining room table. Pledge, the one with the broken top, mists the lemony smell of clean onto my dust rag, probably for the final time. The plastic top broken over a year ago symbolizes the deliberate frugal focus of this past year, a pledge to living on less, creating and celebrating more. The corner where I had envisioned our tree remains waiting and empty ~ perhaps anticipating a commitment from me to a new legacy, a Christmas that begins with the sundown of pre-holiday chaos and spans the twelve days to Epiphany?

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea,
during the time of King Herod,
Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked,
“Where is the one who has been born
king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east
and have come to worship him.”

When King Herod heard this he was disturbed,
and all Jerusalem with him.
When he had called together all the people’s
chief priests and teachers of the law,
he asked them where the Christ was to be born.

“In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied,
“for this is what the prophet has written:
“‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.’

Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found
out from them the exact time the star had appeared.
He sent them to Bethlehem and said,
“Go and make a careful search for the child.
As soon as you find him, report to me, so that
I too may go and worship him.”

After they had heard the king,
they went on their way, and
the star they had seen in the east
went ahead of them until it stopped
over the place where the child was.
When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.
On coming to the house, they saw the child
with his mother Mary, and they bowed down
and worshiped him. Then they opened their
treasures and presented him with gifts
of gold and of incense and of myrrh.

Matthew 2:1-11 NIV1984


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