I have struggled a little gathering the Christmas spirit this year, as I think about my mother who will be missing from the table for the first time this year and my mother-in-law who is retreating into her past life.
But we must keep the traditions and joy of Christmas, so finally I have done a bit of Christmas baking. Strained Glass Christmas cake, little puddings and fruit mince pies. Please serve the fruit mince pies with brandy cream - home made of course!
And making the Coffee Log Roll for my husbands birthday last week - his favourite desert - there is brandy in this cream too!
As Christmas approaches and I think back over the joys and sorrows of the past year, I come to Christmas with a mixture of emotions. We had joy and happiness for the wedding of our youngest nephew and as we await the birth of our eldest nephew's first child - my sister and brother-in-law's first grandchild. Congratulations too for my brother-in-law's 60th birthday, and his father's 90th birthday.
Happiness for time spent with grandchildren, children, family and friends, and renewing friendships with some of my husband's cousins who he hadn't seen for years. Good health, for the most part, and travels to places new to us in our magnificent country. We have much to be grateful for.
But great sorrow and grief for the passing of my mother in July. Admiration, respect and love for my father. Grateful too for the love, support and importance of family and close friends. Thankful for time spent with my sister. And love for my daughter-in-law who lost her mother in 2008 - far too young. I know she misses her, especially at Christmas. Regret that one of our grandchildren just remembers her, and the other youngest never met her - how much they all have missed.
Sadness that my mother-in-law is now entering another world where her memories of us will fade as she retreats into her earlier life.
Sorrow too for those around the world that have been affected by death, hardship and wars.
A couple of weeks ago I went with my Dad and husband to a memorial service for those who have lost loved ones over the past year. It was a beautiful service. They had a huge Christmas tree at the back of the church decorated with beautiful glass Christmas baubles made Melting Pot Glass Studio in Margaret River, Western Australia. All those attending were able to take one home in memory of their loved one.
A reminder to treasure every day, for everyday is a gift - that is why it is called the "present".
Every new morning is a new open page along the pathway of life.
I wish you joy and happiness and love at Christmas - hug the ones you love, treasure every minute, and make the most of every day.
What are your family Christmas traditions? Are you missing someone from your table this year?
Thank you dear blogger friends for dropping by, sharing, encouraging and commenting. I value your presence and look forward to hearing from you.
Below I share with you a few words from Norman Vincent Peale -
I am linking up today with Mosaic Monday - please click on the link to see the work of Mary and other wonderful photographers across the world - Mosaic Monday
Click on the link to go to Melting Pot Studio at Margaret River - Melting Pot Glass
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Wishing you all a happy Christmas
The trees are blooming for Christmas
I wish you enough