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Author Topic: Best Christmas Ever  (Read 1481 times)

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Offline beast

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    • stumpburner
Best Christmas Ever
« on: December 13, 2013, 07:07:43 AM »
 
>>This is what Christmas is all about...
>>
>>Better bundle up - the goose bumps will freeze you!!  I think I need to
>>read this every year at Christmas.
>>
>>Pa never had much compassion for the lazy or those who squandered their
>>means and then never had enough for the necessities.  But for those who
>>were genuinely in need, his heart was as big as all outdoors.   It
was from
>>him that I learned the greatest joy in life comes from giving, not from
>>receiving.
>>
>>It was Christmas Eve 1881.  I was fifteen years old and feeling like the
>>world had caved in on me because there just hadn't been enough money to buy
>>me the rifle that I'd wanted for Christmas.  We did the  chores early
that
>>night for some reason.  I just figured Pa wanted a little extra time so we
>>could read in the Bible.
>>
>>After supper was over I took my boots off and stretched out in front of the
>>fireplace and waited for Pa to get down the old Bible.  I was still
feeling
>>sorry for myself and, to be honest, I wasn't in much  of a mood to read
>>Scriptures. But Pa didn't get the Bible, instead he bundled up again and
>>went outside. I couldn't figure it out because we had already done all the
>>chores. I didn't worry about it long though, I was too busy wallowing in
>>self-pity.  Soon  Pa came back in.  It was a cold clear night
out and there
>>was ice in his beard. "Come on, Matt," he said. "Bundle up good,
it's cold
>>out tonight." I was really upset then. Not only wasn't I getting the rifle
>>for Christmas, now Pa was dragging me out in the  cold, and for no earthly
>>reason that I could see.  We'd already done all the chores, and I couldn't
>>think of anything else that needed doing, especially not on a night like
>>this.  But I knew Pa was not very patient at one dragging one's feet when
>>he'd told  them to do something, so I got up and put my boots  back
on and
>>got my cap, coat, and mittens.  Ma gave me a mysterious smile as I opened
>>the door to leave the house.  Something was up, but I didn't know what..
>>
>>
>>Outside, I became even more dismayed. There in front of the house was the
>>work team, already hitched to the big sled.  Whatever it was we were going
>>to do wasn't going to be a short, quick, little job.   I could tell.
We
>>never hitched up this sled unless we were going to haul a big load.  Pa
was
>>already up on the seat, reins in hand.  I reluctantly climbed up beside
>>him.  The cold was already biting at me.  I wasn't happy.  When
I was on,
>>Pa pulled the sled  around the house and stopped in front of the woodshed.
>>He got off and I followed. "I think we'll put on the high
sideboards," he
>>said.  "Here, help me."  The high sideboards!  It had
been a bigger job
>>than I wanted to do with just the low sideboards on, but whatever  it was
>>we were going to do would be a lot bigger with the high side boards on.
>>
>>
>>After we had exchanged the sideboards, Pa went into the woodshed and came
>>out with an armload of wood - the wood I'd spent all summer hauling down
>>from the mountain, and then all Fall sawing into blocks  and splitting.
>>What was he doing?  Finally I said something.  "Pa," I
asked, "what are you
>>doing?"  You been by the Widow Jensen's lately?" he asked. The
Widow Jensen
>>lived about two miles down the road.  Her husband had died a year or so
>>before and left her with three children, the oldest being eight.  Sure,
I'd
>>been by, but so what?
>>
>>Yeah," I said, "Why?"
>>
>>"I rode by just today," Pa said. "Little Jakey was out digging
around in
>>the woodpile trying to find a few chips. They're out of wood, Matt."
That
>>was all he said and then he turned and went back into  the woodshed for
>>another armload of wood. I followed him.  We loaded the sled so high that
I
>>began to wonder if the horses would be able to pull it.  Finally, Pa
called
>>a halt to our loading, then we went to the smoke house and Pa took down a
>>big ham and a  side of bacon. He handed them to me and told me to put them
>>in the sled and wait.  When he returned he was carrying a sack of flour
>>over his r ight shoulder and a smaller sack of something in his left hand.
>>"What's in the little sack?" I asked.  Shoes, they're  out
of shoes.
>>Little Jakey just had gunny sacks wrapped around his feet when he was out
>>in the woodpile this morning.  I got the children a little candy
too.  It
>>just wouldn't be Christmas without a  little candy."
>>
>>We rode the two miles to Widow Jensen's pretty much in silence.  I tried
to
>>think through what Pa was doing.  We didn't have much by worldly
standards.
>>Of course, we did have a big woodpile, though most  of what was left now
>>was still in the form of logs that I would have to saw into blocks and
>>split before we could use it.  We also had meat and flour, so we could
>>spare that, but I knew we didn't have any money, so why was Pa buying them
>>shoes and candy?  Really,  why was he doing any of this?  Widow
Jensen had
>>closer neighbors than us; it shouldn't have been our concern.
>>
>>We came in from the blind side of the Jensen house and unloaded the wood as
>>quietly as possible, then we took the meat and flour and shoes to the door.
>>We knocked.  The door opened a crack and a timid  voice said,
"Who is it?"
>>"Lucas Miles, Ma'am, and my son, Matt, could we come in for a bit?"
>>
>>Widow Jensen opened the door and let us in.  She had a blanket wrapped
>>around her shoulders.  The children were wrapped in another and were
>>sitting in front of the fireplace by a very small fire that hardly  gave
>>off any heat at all.  Widow Jensen fumbled with a match and finally lit
the
>>lamp.
>>
>>"We brought you a few things, Ma'am," Pa said and set down the sack
of
>>flour.  I put the meat on the table.  Then Pa handed her the sack
that had
>>the shoes in it.  She opened it hesitantly and took the  shoes out
one pair
>>at a time.  There was a pair for her and one for each of the children -
>>sturdy shoes, the best, shoes that would last.  I watched her carefully.
>>She bit her lower lip to keep it from trembling and then tears filled her
>>eyes and started  running down her cheeks.  She looked up at Pa like
she
>>wanted to say
>>something, but it wouldn't come out.
>>
>>"We brought a load of wood too, Ma'am," Pa said.  He turned to
me and said,
>>"Matt, go bring in enough to last awhile.  Let's get that fire up to
size
>>and heat this place up."  I wasn't the same person when  I went
back out to
>>bring in the wood.  I had a big lump in my throat and as mu ch as I hate
to
>>admit it, there were tears in my eyes too.  In my mind I kept seeing those
>>three kids huddled around the fireplace and their mother standing there
>>with tears running  down her cheeks with so much gratitude in her heart
>>that she couldn't speak.
>>
>>My heart swelled within me and a joy that I'd never known before, filled my
>>soul.  I had given at Christmas many times before, but never when it had
>>made so much difference.  I could see we were literally  saving the
lives
>>of these people.
>>
>>
>>I soon had the fire blazing and everyone's spirits soared.  The kids
>>started giggling when Pa handed them each a piece of candy and Widow Jensen
>>looked on with a smile that probably hadn't crossed her face  for a long
>>time.  She finally turned to us. "God bless you," she said.
"I know the
>>Lord has sent you.  The children and I have been praying that he would
send
>>one of his angels to spare us."
>>
>>In spite of myself, the lump returned to my throat and the tears welled up
>>in my eyes again.  I'd never thought of Pa in those exact terms before,
but
>>after Widow Jensen mentioned it I could see that it  was probably
true.  I
>>was sure that a better man than Pa had never walked the earth.  I started
>>remembering all the times he had gone out of his way for Ma and me, and
>>many others.  The list seemed endless as I thought on it.
>>
>>Pa insisted that everyone try on the shoes before we left.  I was amazed
>>when they all fit and I wondered how he had known what sizes to get.  Then
>>I guessed that if he was on an errand for the Lord that  the Lord would
>>make sure he got the right sizes.
>>
>>Tears were running down Widow Jensen's face again when we stood up to
>>leave.  Pa took each of the kids in his big arms and gave them a
hug.  They
>>clung to him and didn't want us to go.  I could see that  they missed
their
>>Pa, and I was glad that I still had mine.
>>
>>At the door Pa turned to Widow Jensen and said, "The Mrs. wanted me to
>>invite you and the children over for Christmas dinner tomorrow.  The
turkey
>>will be more than the three of us can eat, and a man can  get cantankerous
>>if he has to eat turkey for too many meals.  We'll be by to get you about
>>eleven.  It'll be nice to have some little ones around again.  Matt,
here,
>>hasn't been little for quite a spell."  I was the youngest.  My
two
>>brothers and two sisters  had all married and had moved away.
>>
>>
>>Widow Jensen nodded and said, "Thank you, Brother Miles.  I don't
have to
>>say, May the Lord bless you, I know for certain that He will."
>>Out on the sled I felt a warmth that came from deep within and I didn't
>>even notice the cold.  When we had gone a ways, Pa turned to me and said,
>>"Matt, I want you to know something.  Your ma and me have  been
tucking a
>>little money away here and there all year so we could buy that rifle for
>>you, but we didn't have quite enough. Then yesterday a man who owed me a
>>little money from years back came by to make things square.  Your ma and
me
>>were real excited,  thinking that now we could get you that rifle, and I
>>started into town this morning to do just that,but on the way I saw little
>>Jakey out scratching in the woodpile with his feet wrapped in those gunny
>>sacks and I knew what I had to do.  Son, I spent the money  for shoes
and a
>>little candy for those children. I hope you understand."
>>
>>
>>I understood, and my eyes became wet with tears again.  I understood very
>>well, and I was so glad Pa had done it.  Now the rifle seemed very low on
>>my list of priorities.  Pa had given me a lot more.  He  had
given me the
>>look on Widow Jensen's face and the radiant smiles of her three children.
>>
>>For the rest of my life, whenever I saw any of the Jensens, or split a
>>block of wood, I remembered, and remembering brought back that same joy I
>>felt riding home beside Pa that night. Pa had given me much  more than a
>>rifle that night, he had given me the best Christmas of my life.

    The stumpburners and I, also wish you the best Christmas of your life

 0029

 
thanks Guest for reading my post




Don't have one, Don't want one, Not gona get one

Offline Ronald

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Re: Best Christmas Ever
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2013, 09:03:28 AM »
My memories of Christmas are when I was a young kid.. I can still see myself getting all excited the few days before Christmas, and then the night before was the most exciting, not knowing what is happening. I'd go to bed and lay there wide awake listening to strange noises..

Then getting up before dawn and getting everyone else up too..Seeing all the gifts under the tree.

I loved getting the sock full of a few things, like an tangerine, a few mixed nuts, some hard candies.

We didn't have a lot of money, my mom was a stay at home mom, and my dad worked for Ford Motor Co. But will still got a thing or two.

I can still see me opening the first gift and piece of balsa wood and a exacto knife, and a set of prints for carving a car out of the wood..

Later on the smell of turkey cooking. To me Christmas and even to this day Christmas is not the same without a turkey..

Offline Skhilled

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Re: Best Christmas Ever
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2013, 06:03:24 PM »
Happy Holidays to everyone!!! :)


 


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