Christmas Day has come and gone, but I am still marking it in my heart. My house was full with my sons, their wives and their two babies -- my new granddaughters. Birth stories, feeding schedules and dreams for the future filled the air. The presents were thoughtful. The food was good, even if we threw it together at the last minute. Both illness and freezing rain kept our family plans up in the air. But we made the most of our time together. All the young ones headed for home about 6 p.m. and I left the dishes on the table, made myself a Christmas cocktail and enjoyed a holiday movie. A hot eggnog and rum later, I poured myself into bed, slept soundly and tackled the dishes this morning. I just finished, after several coffee and cookie breaks and a couple rounds of the living room to pick up paper, boxes and ribbons.
I am sure there is nothing remarkable about these particular Christmas memories. But for me, they are a turning point. My husband loved Christmas, and since losing him five years ago, I seemed to have lost a piece of my heart. But I know he would love these little girls, be proud of his sons, impressed with their wives and that, if he could, he would have mixed my Christmas drink and talked me into that eggnog. I would give anything to have him back here with me, but as the years pass, it seems easier to feel him still at my side. And so I am indulging myself in all the Christmas I can muster and wishing anyone reading this, a peace-filled holiday.