20 x 30 inches Oil on Canvas
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© Laurie Justus Pace Graphics One Design 2009
A different blog today! Reflections of yesterday ...Christmas Day.
With the coming of the new year I tend to have thoughts of what to change or fix in my life. Improvements for the NEW ME. Yes, even after all these years there is always hope. The day did not start out well yesterday and that probably began my thought process or set the stage for it.
My male dog, Paddy, decided to "mark" my bookcase in the studio. Mind you this is a six foot tall book case crammed full of artbooks from my teaching... old masters, current artists, periodicals, magazines etc etc. Needless to say, the bottom shelf is toast. What is usually on the bottom shelf? The large heavy collector books. This dog is 6 years old. He has never done this before... he must be pretty mad at me....and at my husband. Terry had left for work (Christmas morning) and I pushed my hip into it and push the loaded bookcase away from the wall inching it forward to clean all the wet stuff underneath it as well. I allowed it to dry and then painfully maneuvered it back into position. I was rather relieved I did not have to unload the book case. I left the room to go load the stockings from Santa's visit and heard Paddy Dog whining. I didn't want him to wake the world so I hurried back to him...and low and behold he did it again.
I was at the point of considering cooked goose in the version of Paddy dog for Christmas dinner. I evicted him temporarily out into the snow and began the painful process again. One good thing was...the wet books had been removed from the first time. BUT I found my strength was spent and gone. I could not even begin to budge that bookcase a second time. I had to empty it to clean up. My books are piled around me still this morning as I type this blog. We have a kennel back in the house and he will be kenneled at night or if I have to leave.
I know the dog is depressed. We moved from country acreage to the city two years ago and he is slowly going nuts. This is the human's error. His daddy does not walk him any more... he is too strong for Mommy to walk him...so he is literally going nuts. I cried. I cried alot. I took a shower and started my day over.
Crystal did not get up until eleven. Originally we were to go to my older daughter's home for Christmas but health issues altered those plans. I realized that Crystal and I had zero to eat but eggs and it was Christmas morning. Terry had taken the leftovers from the big dinner on Christmas Eve. We had been invited to his cousin's home in Mesquite. These are cousins from his mom's side of the family. A huge group of four girls and one boy, now all grown with children and grandchildren. I phoned to see if we could rsvp late and that said COME COME.... and Crystal and I did. I blew into the kitchen and made up organic wheat macaroni and cheese (YUM) and loaded a tray with sweets. We googled on the internet to find an open store on Christmas and found Walgreens. We added Christmas bags in the back of the truck cab and took off in the icy and snow for Christmas day festivities.
At Walgreen's I found the new monopoly for UT lovers and a foot massage gadget. As I drove, Crystal stuffed the bags and we arrived with smiles on and our gifts for the exchange. Terry's family is pretty unique. They actually like each other. Heck, they love each other. That house was brimming with the joy of four generations, tons of food, laughter and good stories. We feasted and visited for several hours and then Chris, our hostess, lead the group in a singing Christmas Carol Game. Here again I teared up participating in this sing along with four generations of smiling people. I have not felt this family warmth in a long long time. There was no bickering, pouting, tears, drama... difficult personalities, hidden agendas...etc... it was all a joyful Christmas celebration of family rejoicing in the birth of Christ. Chris prayed with us giving thanks before the meal and again as we joined together in the big room for carols and the present exchange. All hearts beating together as one.
This family has known tragedy over the recent years just as all families face challenges as well as the loss of loved ones. There have been difficult hurdles as they faced life and death with a newborn weighing only 14 ounces, and the loss of their mom, their grandmother in her nineties and a husband/father. Throw in the everyday traumas...and you have life. The joy was in the coming together as family for this precious time and healing through the love that surrounds all. The smallest heart beating was little Santana Rose, recently celebrating her second birthday. She is a tiny slip of love racing around the room smiling and sharing everything she can find. She was born four months early and through the grace of God blessing this family with a miracle of love, she is the heartbeat behind every smile in the home.
Terry made it there after work and it was good to have him bask in the light of this celebration too. It marked changes in my own soul and heart, giving me strength to go forth and know what things have to evolve in my own family. Lifetime is too short to not give thanks to Him who gave it. Time is too short not to "live" the life we have been given with the "gifts" that we each have. Time is too short to squirrel it away working working working. Time is running away with our lives...literally. Hidden angers and agendas eat up our thoughts as we push through the long lonely days.
Am I strong enough to change? I cannot change those around me, I can only be responsible for making positive changes in myself.
How about you?
Post note: A slide show will follow after Crystal is up to show me how to unload the photos off my Verizon phone. I only know how to do my Iphone.
“Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: "Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” Luke 2:28-32.