Monday, December 17, 2007

Visions of Sugarplums

It has been a while since I have had time to write a new post. Now I find myself a week from Christmas Eve and the excitement is starting to build. Of course, the snow this weekend, coupled with the cold temperatures has gone a long way toward putting me in a holiday mood. I will confess that when the snow started falling Saturday morning, I was snuggled between flannel sheets and covered with a down comforter. Perfect sleeping in weather! It was quite pleasant to stop and rest. Oh, there was much I could have been doing, but taking the time to slow down really made me stop and think about all my blessings. We have a tradition in our family where we spend Christmas Eve with my sister, Margaret and her family in their home. They live in the country just outside of Greensburg, In. We have dinner, exchange presents and play some games with them. Her four children were little when we started this tradition but now range in age from 6-17 yrs old. Every year we look forward to sharing this special time with them.
Last year was quite eventful as Christmas Eve was on Sunday. We left after church and headed up I-74 toward Greensburg. Not far past Batesville we heard a horrible noise as the rear driver's side tire blew out. This was pretty upsetting to me since only two weeks prior we had replaced the front tires and had the front tires rotated to the back because they were still good. We called my sister and she had her husband drive over to help us. We got out and began trying to remove the cover from the spare tire. By the time my brother in law arrived, we were still struggling to get the zipper undone. It had been five years since it was off--so I am guessing you know what we encountered. We ended up breaking the zipper and pulling the cover off the spare tire.
As if that wasn't enough opposition(there was a cold wind--thankfully no rain) whoever had worked on the tires decided to torque the lug nuts really tight. After much struggling we managed to break all but one. It wouldn't budge.
While we were struggling with the lug nut another car passed us and pulled over. To our surprise it was Bishop Striebeck and his famiy. He and his son worked with us to try and break the bolt and the only thing that happened was we ended up with a bent tire iron. Finally, my brother in law was able to contact someone with the right tools to help us. When the Bishop was sure we had help on the way, he left us. Eventually we were able to get the tire replaced and were on our way.
This was our Christmas miracle. By the time we got to my sister's home, we were cold, hungry and tired. Margaret and the children were waiting there with warm hearts and a wonderful meal. I was truly thankful that we were protected during this experience. It could have been much worse than it was and I have been grateful that the Bishop took time to stop and make sure we were ok.
This year, for the first time in a long time, I am looking forward to having my Dad and Bobbye join us at Margaret's for our family Christmas celebration. This past Saturday morning, instead of being sad about having to stay in, I got out my scriptures and read the Christmas story. I read Luke 2 and Matthew 2 and then read in Helaman 14 and 3rd Nephi 1. I finished off by reading Isaiah 9:6 as tears flowed down my cheeks. It has been a challenge for me to get into the spirit of the holidays this year. I am thankful for the gift of a snowstorm that helped me slow down enough to have my heart touched by the scriptural account of Jesus' birth.
As we begin this final week before Christmas, may each of you take time to count your blessings, recognize the many miracles that occur daily in your lives, and find peace as you feel the love of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Merry Christmas to you all.


Mama D said...

Thanks for sharing this perspective. I am glad that you had the opportunity to burrow under the covers and read the Christmas story! Merry Christmas!

Pampered Princess said...

That was really nice Sylvia. I feel the Christmas spirit at your house, so I know it's there somewhere. Maybe after you hang up that monstrously large Christmas ornament, you'll REALLY be in the mood!

Just kidding. Thanks for sharing your scripture reading with us. I have been needing a little more scripture in my life and plan to get a little today. I realized this morning that I always wait for things to be quiet so I can settle down and really concentrate on the scriptures. Today, I'm trying something new. I'm going to read a bit of the Christmas story with Savannah and Jared....wish me luck! :)

Patty said...

Being a cat lover, I have to comment on the picture of your cats first... that is soooo adorable!! Don't they look so peaceful? Sure wish I slept like that more often! (Maybe we should follow their example more often- cats sure do seem to find balance in their lives!!)
I'm glad you're starting to feel the Christmas spirit. It's been kinda absent for me too, so it's nice to hear your experience and to take heart that I'm not the only one struggling to keep the spirit of Christmas in my heart. I hope you have another wonderful Christmas Eve with your sister and family.

Louann and Bari said...

Thank you for sharing the gift at the end of your trial last Christmas! I was worried that it had ruined your holiday, but you managed to find the silver lining and many blessings.
Love you Both- and hope you have a Blessed and RESTFUL (from one working sister to another) Holiday!

cassie said...

Sorry to hear about your experience, hope this year works out a lot better, and thanks for the thoughts.

Rob & Crys said...

My little one year old is on my lap as I read your thoughts, she is oohing and aweing(is that a word?) over the pictures of your cats. Thanks for the reminder to take time out of the rush to enjoy the meaning behind Christmas.

chelle said...

Merry Chritsmas Johnsons! Hope all your wishes and hopes for the new year find you easily!
Way to go on the scritpure reading..Something I STILL need to make time for!
Thanks for sharing :D