Joy in Family

Today is my Momma’s birthday.  I sat on my front porch this morning, enjoying my coffee and the rain pouring down.  I started reflecting on my Momma, my childhood and the joy I felt surrounded by my family.  

We grew up poor, so we made our Christmases special with homemade ornaments, building snowmen and the occasional snowball fight.  We cut strips of construction paper to make garland or if we were lucky enough to have popcorn, we used that instead.  We searched our belongings for possible gifts to give each other.  We wrapped the gifts in newspaper or brown paper grocery bags with love for the person who would receive it.

We survived “The Great Blizzard of 1978”.

My siblings, our friends and I had so much snow to play in. We doubled up our clothing and using socks as mittens, we headed out. Boy did we play! Boxes in tote, to use as sleds, we trudged upwards to conquer the snow-covered hills. One of my favorite memories that year was when my little brother and I built an igloo and used it as a cover for a massive snowball fight with our other siblings and friends.

We would come home frozen and hungry.  My Momma would help us out of our snow drenched clothing, give us warm towels to wrap around our feet and serve us whatever meal she had ready for us to eat.  I can still hear her yelling at us for not “coming home sooner because we almost got frost bite on our fingers and toes.”

 As an adult, I wanted the Christmas holiday to always be a special time for our family, and it was.  One Christmas, my daughter, Sabrina was coming home from Korea with her family.  It didn’t take me two seconds to start planning, “The Best Christmas Ever”.

I thought back to my childhood Christmases and the homemade ornaments and knew that would be my theme for this celebration.  I contacted the family and we all started participating online.  Before you knew it, we had our menu planned, we had rented a cabin in the snow, and made plans to cut our own tree.  It was truly going to be an old-fashioned Christmas.

I’ve always enjoyed crafting and all my children and grandchildren enjoyed it as well. I taught them to crochet, sew, paint and create things from their own imaginations as my grandmother and mother had taught me. So, what better time for everyone to bring their skills to the table.

All the family members began creating their contributions to the tree decorations. .  

Some of our creations:

Of course, we wanted to incorporate some crafting togetherness, so we held an online contest on which ornament we would make at the cabin. The most likes would win.

And the winner was:

This guy

It was a delight to see the ornaments hanging on our “Charlie Brown” tree. And it really did turn out to be a beautiful tree.

That year truly was “The Best Christmas Ever”.  Yes, we made homemade Christmas ornaments, we read books, played hilariously and fun inside games, went sleigh riding and inner-tubing, had snowball fights and built a snowman.  We cooked together and ate wonderfully delicious foods.  We laughed!  We loved!

Today’s my Momma’s birthday.  It’s been raining all day.  This afternoon, I sat on my front porch, watching the rain pouring down and the fog roll in, enjoying a cup of tea with my husband. 

It’s funny how the rain makes you feel so many different emotions.  Today, I miss the joy of my family, and I especially miss my Momma.