I am certain that each of us has memories of our childhood that today we remember as though it were yesterday. Christmas and New Years seem to provide us with some of the most vivid. I am reminded of the times as a child when I walked into my grandparents homes to find Christmas trees cut fresh from the pasture and draped in tinsel and lights. The smell of cedar and baked goods permeated every space in the house. Everything seemed so simple then (unless you were trying to use the nutcracker to open walnuts).
Looking back today, I think it’s really the “not so obvious” things that I miss the most. I remember the time spent with family, often with aunts, uncles and cousins that we didn’t see very often — and the disappointment when it was time for them to leave, knowing it could be another year before we would get together again. It was a time of “doing for others” simply because that’s what we do here in Kansas…scooping out a neighbor’s snowy driveway, helping to rake the last of the fallen leaves, or delivering homemade treats to a neighbor. It was the sweet aroma of one grandfather’s pipe and the joyful music from my other grandfather’s harmonica.
This year, I would like to extend a sincere Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you. No matter your family’s traditions and celebrations, I hope you’ll remember what matters most — kindness to others and time with the people who mean the most to you. May these blessings rekindle your favorite memories and experiences, so special this time of year.
Have a safe and wonderful break — and we’ll see you in 2016!