“Our family Christmas is December 23 this year” my mom announced.
“Who has Christmas Day?” I wasn’t trying to challenge the game plan, but I’m learning that special holidays have to be shared with the increase of in-laws and conflicting schedules.
“Nobody” mother said “but Julia’s been thinking all along that she’s going to be in the hospital by Christmas. In fact Sherm is convinced the twins are coming on December 25. So Jul requested that if she’s still at home on Monday, that we celebrate early.”
Monday night was a wonderful time. The guys provided crab legs for the feast and other than Em discovering that her shrimp allergy now includes crab legs (😭) the meal was relaxed and wonderful. We enjoyed uninterrupted time of family.
We moved downstairs to the family room and relaxed around the fire for our gift exchange. I love these people. Soon Nate had his brand new record player clicking and whirling and Sherm had his bear hide that Em had tanned to surprise him spread out over the floor. I sat my coffee cup on the cedar end table that Jul had made me and smiled at the chaos. I thought about the changes we’ll be facing soon as we thoughtlessly discarded wrapping paper on the floor in our haste to discover what the package contained (clearly not worried about who was going to chew on potentially harmful plastic bags) Ah yes, Family time is precious.
And yet in the back of all of our minds was a feeling of suspense. Like an intense waiting game. Sherm thought for a game we should all write down guesses- twin genders, names, DOB “AND” he suggested proudly “whoever is closest gets the first call” This game idea got lost in the chaos but not before Father declared he “couldn’t wait to take his twin granddaughters trucking”
But the wait continued.
As I read the Christmas story this year, I understand the waiting a bit differently. The world was waiting and had been for years. They knew the promises- had them memorized probably from childhood. But when would the Promised Savior come? What would He look like? What if they missed Him? I’m sure the buzz came and went as generations expected Christ to come. But the waiting continued.
Suddenly things changed. There were angelic visits. Joseph and Mary’s relationship endured all kinds of trauma as the accusations of unfaithfulness and sin floated around. They somehow made an 80 mile trek to Bethlehem before the birth. So many random events leading up to Christ’s coming “that it might be fulfilled.”
I even understand the Shepherds differently this year, as I pull my barn boots out of the cobwebs and make that familiar trek to the barn. One commentator that I read mentioned the fact that it’s possible the Shepherds were watching the lambs used for sacrifices in the temple. So when the angels arrived announcing that THE Sacrificial Lamb- the One who would take away the sins of the World- had been born, basically they were given the gift of retirement. “Your replacement has arrived. Your job will soon be over”
Christmas Evening, the hired men were off, so I was scheduled to help Sherm milk. “Well, not sure you’re gonna get Christmas babies” I commented in passing
“Yeh,” he said “just a few more hours”
About 16 cows later Sherm informs me “It ain’t over yet” and next thing I knew I was milking alone while reinforcements in the form of Mother and Em were sailing my direction to help with the remaining chores.
Christmas Evening, our family was given the most exciting gifts.
Uriah Ray (middle name of both Sherman and his Papa) weighed 3 lbs 12 oz. Uriah “God is my light”
And Isaiah Stan (my dads first name is Stanley) weighed 3 lbs 15 oz Isaiah “the Lord is my salvation”
Aunt Sharon suggested “the Lord is my light, is my light and my salvation” as a family theme song.
And I love that
Uriah is so excited to meet the aunties.
Isaiah sleeps through the first of many selfies
(Will not admit how many trips to the local hospital per day my family is averaging 🤷🏻♀️😂😂)
The LORD is my light and my salvation– whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life– of whom shall I be afraid? Ps 27:1
May you grow to understand this verse fully, my little men. Welcome to this beautiful world. We are so glad you’re here.
Ok, gotta run, there’s a few chores I gotta see to until my replacements grow enough to take over for me