WE HAD THE GRAND FORTUNE to be at home this Christmas, in particular since that meant Tim’s sister, Colette, and her husband, Gary, came to be with us. I adore them so this is always a joy. This time it was even more special since we’d traveled with them to Israel in September. It was a journey that opened my heart and my eyes to so many things, not the least of which is my interest in and deep respect for the deep faith that is the Jewish tradition.
We were together for the last nights of Hanukkah, and I was thrilled when Gary brought out the Menorah and placed it on the big island in our kitchen. As he always does, he shared poignant facts about the history of the ancient ritual (along with some personal Gary perspective, which I always love) and as prayers were offered, the candles were lit.
It was beautiful, and standing in that holy light I was reminded how we all are one. How—whatever your religion—at the heart there is deep, abiding love. This sentiment was particularly moving on Christmas Eve, when the lighting of the Menorah came just before we donned our coats and one and all made the short drive to our sweet Providence Presbyterian Church.
THERE IS SO MUCH TO TELL about Christmas Day, about Eliza and Preston and all the dogs; about Samantha arriving at the Columbia airport from New York ON TIME even with all the weather; about opening presents via FaceTime with Julia in Tel Aviv; about me painting The Sea of Galilee for Sam and noting it (in black Sharpie) on the back of the canvas then learning it was actually The Dead Sea. (LOL although not really because I am still a bit horrified by that.)
About the Coles joining us for a most festive and joyful and delicious Christmas dinner.
About our glorious after-dinner viewing of the wonderful movie, Spirited, people and dogs and blankets and pillows piled everywhere. About everyone returning home, all safe and sound. About the fun, a day or two later, of a whole bunch of pictures arriving via text from Colette (which isn’t it always a joy to get new photos of a happy event?) and I clicked to find among them—this.
I couldn’t take it in. I mean. Really? Right there on my shirt, heart after heart, cast by the lights of the Menorah.
Christmas Miracle #18.
30 Days of Joy