Pondering Joyful Moments: While the Children Visit

But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. Luke 2:19 (NASB)

The house is quiet and empty this morning. It is the first day that things are “normal” after the Christmas holiday since all our children and grandchildren have gone. When I was a young parent with three little boys running through the house with nerf guns and action figures, I enjoyed the sounds as they played Batman and Spiderman with each other. Christmas morning was such fun! I loved watching them open many small and inexpensive packages (action figures were only a few bucks back then) and shout with delight that we bought just the right one.

As they grew into teens, their responses were more muted, but the Christmas experience was still enjoyable. The focus turned more to the special breakfast I make only on Christmas Day, and the amount of food increased from one pan to two. When each of our sons married, I made sure that recipe for Christmas Quiche was given to their wives, and the tradition continues in each of their homes.

Three Little Boys Grow Up

This Christmas brought all my children and grandchildren under our roof for the first time in many years. We were together for several days and made many new memories. My family is much like many of yours, I suspect. Not all my kids are practicing or believing Christians. We don’t all share the same political views either, so there were topics we avoided for the sake of a kind of family unity.

I thoroughly enjoyed the time I had with these wonderful people God has sovereignly placed in my life. There were moments on Christmas night that I sat quietly and took in the pandemonium taking place in my living room. The boys (now married men) excitedly discussing the latest Star Wars movie with my husband; laughing and over-talking each other. Listening to my daughters-in-law chatting about shopping, gifting, and other assorted topics, hearing the baby making happy baby squeals, and my toddler granddaughter having the time of her life in the middle of the pile of tissue and wrapping paper. She was delighted to gather great big armfuls and throw it in the air over her head, giggling with absolute glee as it rained down on her head. It was total chaos, and I cherished every moment.

Bittersweet Longings Due to Loss

It is days like that when I miss my parents deeply. My heart longs to call them and talk to them about these things. I want to ask them if they had the same kinds of experiences when it was my siblings and me as the young marrieds with children. I wish I could compare experiences with my mom, and mine the depths of her feelings about when she was “The Grandma.” I’d love to talk with my dad again and watch him set the table with the Christmas China for us all to share Christmas dinner. Just as important would be the discussion of how exhausting the whole experience is!

Sharing Love and Contentment

On Christmas night, once everyone was tucked in his or her respective beds, my wonderful husband told me he had been observing me throughout the festivities of the day. He said he could see the love and contentment on my face as I cooked and served, played with the grandkids, and loved on all my people. He was right, I was totally in my element. It was the kind of day I used to hope for when those 3 little boys were blasting each other with Nerf guns.

Pondering Furture Events

I have been pondering these future events in my heart for many years, wondering what they would be like to watch unfold before my eyes. This Christmas I experienced what I suspect was the first revelation, and I am treasuring these things in my heart. I will savor the memories, and play them repeatedly in my quieter moments.

I am a woman richly blessed.