And this is how it was spent...
I went to an afternoon Christmas tea and cookie exchange at my dad's neighbor's
house barn. The neighbors I grew up with. The type of neighbors that only seem possible in dreams anymore. The neighbors that have become family. While Audrey (and her cousin Jonathan) roamed around the most beautifully decorated barn and explored, I spent time chatting with women who have really lived.
Cousins looking for the donkeys and horse out the door. I am so glad I was able to share Audrey with the most beautiful older women both inside and out.
Audrey was fascinated with all the candles. Fortunately, most were battery-operated.
At each tea kettle (there were at least 5), a story was written about the significance of each one. If you could read the story above it would have said something like this: the tea pot has a rose on it which represents my husband buying a rose for me every Saturday the year we were married in 1946 for .50 a rose. (insert tears here, sweetest story e.v.e.r) After sharing the story with me, my neighbor, jokingly, said I put this up to remind him what he did way back in the day.
A woman of great wisdom and a reflection of Proverbs 31, Irene. I grew up visiting her and watching her hang her clothes out on the line, which she still does, now in her 90's.
This is me and Irene's daugher, Peggy. She and her husband live in a finished barn behind my dad's house. You know, the one with the donkeys. I would listen to donkeys every single day to have a neighbor like her. She is amazing and has a heart of gold. She never could have kids, but we were like children to her. She is truly a mother to so many. I want to spend more time with her and listen to all her great stories of living in Europe while her husband was in the war. She has been to Russia, Israel, Germany, Holland...pretty much everywhere. But her favorite place is at home taking care of her husband, her mother, and many animals. Living the simple life.
Let me just say, um, delish.
This is what Christmas time is all about. Making memories. Sharing all the joys God has blessed us with.