Winter is such a cozy time. A bit of leisure time to rest, craft, shop and to reminiscence about all that we hold dear. My Susan Branch Christmas Memories book is essentially empty but it does include Christmas cards from the past. I am so glad I saved the cards that mark the years passing and children growing and then there are my mother's Christmas cards which I have saved for over twenty years.
Maybe this year I will be motivated to find all the cards and put them together. This morning I found her card from 2002. Lee and I had just celebrated our first year of marriage and discovered that we were expecting Jacob.
My mother's 2002 card is to typical of her. A lovely note filled with love, hugs, kisses and a wish that we soon would again embrace. The card depicts a nativity scene complete with sheep, a Shepard, and the three kings placed under a huge tree decorated with angels and a golden star at the top. Growing up, baby Jesus was always the central part of Christmas. Santa didn't play a significant role at all. We were taught that baby Jesus brought the gifts and so my mother maintained the tradition even in her selection of cards. Enclosed in this card were two crisp one dollar bills. One for Mark and the other for Nicholas. I am sentimental and the dollars remain because her placement of bills in the card was more important that spending the dollars. I knew that those dollars had passed through her hands and I could not bear to part with them.
My mother didn't have much in the way of material things but everything she gave came tied with heart strings. She set a fine example for us all. Keep Jesus at the center of your celebration, remember those that you love by writing a note and share what you have.
God gave us memory so that we might have roses in December and mothers forever.” Rectorial address, May 3, 1922, St. Andrew's University, Scotland. James Matthew Barrie