Merry Christmas from the Wilsons!!
A big “HEY” to our treasured family and friends! We hope that your year has been full of fun filled moments and cherished memories. Jenny already has our house in festive mode inside and out; she is perusing what kinds of incredible edibles she can whip up for this Christmas season. Soon the dishes will be stacked high and the flour will be flying! (Just kidding Jenny…honest!)
Our year began with Crystal changing our official titles of, “Grandma” and “Grandpa” to Gum Gum and Pops!! Yep, that’s right; we have been “rebranded” and couldn’t be happier…I don’t know how she chose Pops, but Crystal saw Jenny chewing gum and I think it stuck…the name anyway…
Jenny and I started out the year with a nice vacation at Disney World; just two elder children wandering through the Magic Kingdom while wondering what Crystal will think of it all in a few years. We went to Gatlinburg for a week in May and toured the burned out areas of the region, including our Tree Tops Resort that lost more than half of its’ buildings including our unit. We were due for a vacation at Edisto Island in September but one of the many hurricanes this year preempted our stay until April of next year.
One of the family’s great tragedies this year was the loss of my sister, Jennifer on October 25th. She has left such a chasm in our hearts that I fear healing will be both very slow and painful. We will all miss her zest for life, her candid, “shoot from the hip” demeanor and her passionate love, for she loved fully and unconditionally. She left this life like she lived it; on her terms. Jennifer may not have been granted physical healing, but God granted her another ten plus months to experience true emotional and spiritual healing that had eternal ramifications.
Crystal will be three in January and has continued to steal our hearts. Crystal is very intelligent and insightful; many times she will make a remark that makes us pause and question, “where did THAT come from?” She is certainly a free spirit who can be very quiet and composed, but suddenly will break out in song or exclaim, “There’s a bear!” Crystal is very much into play acting now and you never know who she is going to be. One moment she might be Millie, her cousin or any member of her preschool class. All I have to say is, Justin and Alison are in BIG trouble…
Under the category of pity poor me…I’m mourning the passing of my fifties…Yep, I’m sixty now…makes me a little nauseous when I hear that; I believe the thought makes my older siblings a little uncomfortable as well. Jenny and Alison lessened the blow by taking me to Ocean Isle Beach, NC for a few days of “reality adjustments”.
As I bring our Christmas letter to a close, I am reminded of the fragility of life and how we so often take for granted what is truly a gift from God that keeps on giving; the magic of ordinary days. The lyrical laughter of a child, perhaps the friendly banter with coworkers, or a much needed phone call from a friend or loved one are just simple reminders of love wrapped in the every day. And while it might seem a little unrealistic to expect everyone to just drop what you’re doing and ponder on your life, all I’m asking is that you perhaps take the time to readjust your heart, even for a while, to one of thanksgiving. Slow down a little, use all of your senses so you can truly experience all the blessings around you. Kiss your spouse, hug your kids, make that call, patch that relationship, and forgive those silly grievances you may have with another, for we don’t know how much time we have with them or they with us. And please remember one thing this Christmas season, peace on earth and good will towards men begins at your own front doorstep…
Much love to you and yours this Christmas and always!!
From Gum Gum, Pops and Izzy the dog