Friday, December 24, 2010

It Came Without Ribbons. It Came Without Tags.

"And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled 'till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more."
-- Dr. Seuss
It's a time for family and for holding close the ones who mean the most to you.  Yesterday, Mrs. Graybeard and I drove to the southern end of the state to visit my mom and brother, along with my niece and nephew.  Both of my in-laws passed away long ago, and my own dad preceded them by many years.  I have one brother; both my wife's older sister and younger brother have passed on.  The number of family members is dwindling.  My own kids are a thousand miles away, and won't be visiting.  No grandkids.  For the first time in our lives, Mrs. Graybeard and I won't put gifts for each other under the tree.  It has been a good year for us, and we've been blessed to be able to pick up toys as we wanted along the way.  Neither of us could put together a little list of things we'd like.

Things are not important.  Family is.  People are. 

Hold close the ones you love.  If we're very lucky, this will be the worst Christmas of our lives.  If we're not that lucky, these will be the good old days.  Either way, hold tight.  "Before you dot another 'i' or cross another 't', Bob Cratchit!"

It's one my of my blessings that a small group of really high quality folks stop by here to share my blather.  Thanks. 

ASM826 at Random Acts of Patriotism has a nice posting on the nativity that's really worth reading

Merry Christmas, "and may God bless us - every one" 


  1. Amen, Graybeard. Amen.

    This is the first year that #1 Son has been out of High School, and is going away on a trip (all by himself!) soon after Christmas. #2 Son hasn't believed in Santa for these 5 years now. It will be an interesting day.

    But Merry Christmas to you and Mrs. Graybeard. And best wishes for a very Happy New Year.

    And when money's not so tight, I'll join you on that AR ...

  2. You are a blessing to us as well. Thank you for sharing with us and may God's favor find you and your family in the coming year.

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  3. Merry Christmas to you and the Mrs. Your blog is usually one of my first reads on my daily blog roll. Friends are what count more than commercialized gifts.

    As for the Mrs. and me, we drove 2.5+ hours to the son's apartment and did our usual rolling turkey feast (14 lb this year) using his stove! The logistics of hauling an uncooked turkey that far in an ice chest, and then having it perfectly ready to start cooking the next morning, without having a problem with spoilage, while being sure to have all the necessary utensils, including to bake a pie, is a logistical nightmare, but we have done it several times now :-) And, I even got in a trip to the local shooting emporium on Monday morning after Christmas, and found precisely the right(but odd-sized) bullets needed for my muzzleloader, before we drove back home!

    Much as you note, the wife and I bought much less this year than in years past for each other, preferring instead to focus on the real reason for the season, and spend time with our son.

    God Bless you and yours!