It has been a wonderful, memorable Christmas for so many reasons. We’ve been blessed with time together and with family. God has been so gracious.
This year has held some difficult moments.
This past May, my sweet Grandma learned that, after 7 years in remission, her lymphoma had returned. She fought valiantly, but on July 16, Jesus called her home.
We are a tight knit family (my siblings and I the only grandchildren on that side of the family), and my grandma has always been a cornerstone of each holiday.
We knew this Christmas would be hard.
Last night, we held to our Christmas Eve tradition of going to the house my grandparents lived in. My aunt lived with my grandma for several years, and continues to live in that house. She did a wonderful job of making the same food and creating the same wonderful, warm atmosphere that we always enjoyed with my grandma. We had a wonderful time together, sharing in food, laughs, and gifts. Still, of course, Grandma’s absence was felt deeply.
Now my grandma was a very generous lady, and one of her favorite discoveries in her later years was a channel called QVC. 🙂 She’d often buy us items from QVC — particularly jewelry for my sisters, mom and I. In the past several months after her passing, I’ve often looked at the jewelry she’d given me and thought to myself “I need to treasure this all the more…I won’t be getting any more jewelry from Grandma”.
You can imagine the tears that sprung to my eyes last night when, at the end of the evening, my aunt presented my sisters, mom and I each with small boxes wrapped in gold paper. The tag on mine read: “To: Nikki , From: Grandma”.
My grandma had done some of her Christmas shopping early this year.
Early — like, before she even got sick. She found beautiful necklaces for both of my sisters, my mom and I. She ordered them, received them, looked at them, and tucked them away as Christmas gifts for us.
My aunt found them and carefully wrapped, labeled and presented them to us.
Each one of us got a different necklace. I LOVE mine…it’s what *I* would have picked out for myself. A lovely stone heart made of Irish Connemara Marble. Green — my favorite color.
Thank you God, for small graces, even as we celebrate the biggest one of all.
You are so kind.
In Loving Memory of Grandma E (pictured here with W, last Christmas)…