Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A hot cocoa party on a Sunday afternoon

I mentioned in my most recent blog post that my brother Phil was here for a little visit Friday evening. The kids were so excited to greet him when he got here! We ate Taco Soup, visited and watched old home movies.  I recently had old tapes put on DVDs. I enjoyed seeing Christmas at Vic and Kris', our nieces Molly and Hannah with their cat, family time in Stan and Adie's old family room - before the remodel -  time in Lynden...The clip we watched with Phil was of us in Moses Lake one weekend when Natasha, Matt, Phil and our mom came to town. Seeing our mom made both of us smile. Her laughter on the video is precious. I was reminded that we had so much fun just doing silly things or just being with each other.
Maybe that is what prompted our little hot cocoa party Sunday. I need time on the floor, giggling and soaking up these kids. -- The Santa candle pictured above was a really sweet thrift store find last week. It brought back a sweet memory. Growing up, our dad was never much into Christmas. Our mom always got the tree, did all the shopping etc. Sure he liked having the family around the table for a nice dinner but as far as gifts and parties and decorating went, he didn't enjoy it much.
One Christmas when I was maybe six years old, he went down to the Sunrise Store (the corner store on the road we lived on) and bought me and Lesha each a few things. (It was just the two of us then) He bought Lesha a snowman candle and he bought me a Santa candle. It was almost just like this one. He gave us little change purses too. It was really special to me. Every year I set that Santa candle on my dresser. I never lit it. It was a sweet reminder. A reminder of the Christmas that dad surprised us with fun little gifts. I don't know what happened to that candle, but when I spotted this one at Goodwill the other day I stopped. I was flooded with memories. You know the moments when your eyes fill with tears, but you are smiling? --------- I miss my mom so much. I missed for a moment being a child. I felt thankful for that gift given to us on the Sunrise road. I thanked God for the gift of family.

We see  my dad almost every Christmas now and he loves the time with family. He laughs at the funny things his grand kids do. He makes us a delicious dinner. He is generous to give us a money to save or to spend. I will never forget the year when he picked out a gift.  
 All of my kids are handling this candle like it is so special! But, I haven't even told them the story. Hazel was sure to have it as part of our hot cocoa party. I have been enjoying the Christmas decor at the thrift stores so much. I am seeing ornaments that we used to have. I saw a ceramic angel that was so similar to one my mom got out every Christmas. I bought it for Hazel's room. How is it that I am becoming even more sentimental? I try to pack up Oren's baby clothes and it is so hard for me... I will always be the sentimental type! (a bit of a hoarder too, truth be known)

This Christmas season I am so excited to make a lot of memories with my children! To bake, to sing Away in the Manger with Hazel and Oren, to decorate the tree, to enjoy the lights... and most importantly, focus on the true meaning of Christmas. The gift of Jesus!

no hot cocoa for Oren
We gave him a mini marshmallow but he had no idea what it was so he didn't eat it!
He does, however, now know what popsicles are! Frozen juice bars are Oren's treat. This little guy has been SO healthy! I think part of the reason is because he doesn't have many sweet treats at all.
He loved our hot cocoa party and chose to spend most of his time reading.


kelly said...

What a fun idea Michele! I think we might have to make this a family tradition and also incorporate special memories & cherished Christmas trinkets and what nots. Thank you for sharing your precious memories! I feel this is what it is all about. What a sweet moment captured with Hazel embracing Oren too, and Willem's joy!

Debra said...

I love how you share your memories. I had two candles kinda like your Santa. They were a Snowman & a Christmas tree. The price on them was .10cents from the Sprouse Ritez store. I went into Goodwill yesterday to look for a desk & scored on some Christmas stuff too! Your kids are so BLESSED to have you for their MOM.

Tami said...

I love this story and this post. Aren't Christmas memories a blessing? Hot cocoa parties are now what your kids get to remember. You are a blessing to your children.

And... Christmas thrifting is the best!

Vicki said...

Oh my...this post brought back nearly the same memories for me. We lived just north of you on the Sunrise Rd...up on the hill (it seemed like a bigger hill back then, not so big now). I remember getting "treasures" from the Sunrise Grocery Store too. I remember seeing your Mom and your Dad there many, many times...I always thought your Mom was the prettiest lady I had ever seen.

Natasha said...

I love your hot cocoa party! I remember those candles. Even at such a young age you were the sentimental type! Not lighting the candle in true Michele fashion. You are a blessing to your kids, such a great mom and your kids will have great childhood memories!