Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Past & Present

I've been in a blogging funk lately. Isn't it funny how many new words there are in our vocabulary that our grandparents didn't have in their's? I can't imagine my Nanny, God rest her soul, using words like "blog funk". Of course, I can't imagine Nanny saying things like GPS, or having a cell phone, or knowing what Tivo is, either. The explosion in technology in the last twenty-five years blows my mind. Daniel prophesied in the bible that knowledge would be increased in the last days.
Between my blogging funk, and my efforts to provide some handmade Christmas gifts this year, I've been very busy. I have commented on a blog here and there, but for the most part, I'm so far behind in my blog reading, I fear I shall never catch up. I may just mark you all as read on January first, and start fresh. I would appreciate it if you didn't post anything too exciting or too funny until then. Speaking of January first, that is my one year blogiversary. The year has flown by, and it's been fun! I look back at some of my early posts and I cringe with embarrassment at how goofy I sounded. Of course, I do the same thing with my current posts, so that's not sayin' much.
Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that I'll likely be on haitus until after Christmas. If I don't manage to post again before then, I wish you all a very merry Christmas, as we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
***
Last year at this time, my daughter, Nikki, and her boyfriend, Jim, were living in Minneapolis. Prior to Christmas day, they spent a few days in the Wiscconsin Dells, making merry with Jim's (very merry) family. Their plans were to stay home for Christmas, since Nikki couldn't take more than a day or so off from work. However, when they got back to Minneapolis from visiting Jim's family, Nikki got very sad, thinking of her family back in Texas. Having just moved back from Germany earlier that year, she'd already missed three Christmases at home.
Jim, sensing the quiet mood in someone who is rarely quiet, and being the thoughtful and sensitive guy he is, suggested they make a whirlwind trip to Texas. Taking just enough time to shower and repack their bags, they hit the road and drove all day (in heavy snow through Iowa), and all night, arriving on our doorstep Christmas Eve morning. They didn't call, as Nikki wished to surprise us, and surprised, we were! My shrieks of delight could have shattered glass. Their plans were to leave the very next day, but we convinced them to stay and leave the morning after Christmas. Nikki called and managed to clear it with her boss. It was a wonderful Christmas!
That's Nikki holding our dog, Leyna, and Thing on the left.

Oh, look, Thing grew a body!
Seriously, that's Jim and Nikki, laughing at John's (her bubba) reaction to a comical gift they bought him. That ugly looking unidentifiable spot on the wall in the background? Don't ask.
Those happy memories will have to do me this year, as there's positively no chance they'll show up on our doorstep this Christmas Eve. Though I didn't figure they'd return to the states this soon after their move to England (last September), I had hoped they'd come home next year for the holidays. That won't likely happen. Since going to work at the daycare on base (which she loves!), Nikki's learned they have a drawing each June to see who gets to take time off at Christmas. Of course, Nikki wasn't even there yet this past June. She'll get off for Christmas and the day after, but that's it. At least we'll be able to talk to them on the phone while watching them on the webcam. I can just hear my Nanny's reaction at watching someone on a webcam who's thousands of miles across an ocean. My Swaaaaaaan, she'd say, with her voice rising at the end. I sure miss my Nanny. And I sure miss my Nikki. I thank God for modern technology.
Merry Christmas, and God bless you all!
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And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
~Luke 2:10-14

48 comments:

Nancy said...

Yes, technology makes connecting with far-flung family members very easy. Despite invitations from both of my sisters, I will be staying home this year. I don't mind celebrating the day by myself, as I have done it many times.

Enjoy your Christmas hiatus and your "web-time" visit with your daughter. Of course, YOU could show up unexpectedly on HER doorstep this year. Think about it.

Renna said...

Nancy, though we do plan on applying for our passports soon, we've not done so yet. So, even if the funds for travelling to Europe were here now, our passports are not! ;-)

Marcia said...

Nice post, thanks for sharing. I've thought about how much things have changed. I hope you have a good Christmas and enjoy talking with your daughter. :)

MSM said...

Love this post and the pictures; and surely you know that no one would have noticed that spot on the wall if you hadn't mentioned it? Who could see beyond Nikki's gorgeous smile?

You have been and will be missed, but that'll make it that much more exciting when you're back on the scene!

Jennifer said...

Wow - your 1 year blogiversary is coming up already. It seems like you've been a blogging buddy forever!

Don't worry - funks are normal. I regularly "Mark as Read" on my bloglines, especially when I'm feeling overwhelmed.

Thank goodness for technology. It's a great way to stay in touch with loved ones so far away. *HUGS*

Carol said...

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU RENNA!!!!!!!

Hubs and I haven't spent a Christmas with family in over six years. We are all scattered about. But yes, technology is fantastic and everyone is a simple phone call, email, webcam away.

Oh, and I agree with MSM about the spot and the dazzling smile drawing all attention. ;)

Enjoy a wonderful holiday!!!!

lindanuts said...

I wondered about you but I figured right--busy, busy, busy. Glad to hear all is well. Your daughter( and dog) are beautiful.
We will be on the webcam at Christmas, too. Sara will be home from China on Christmas Day! That will be my favorite gift. We spend every Christmas Day with my parents and will as long as they are here. DH's parents have been gone for 30 years and now 2 of his sisters are gone. He only has 1 brother left and a sprinkling of nieces scattered all over the world. Our kids are in Colorado and Las Vegas. It sure didn't turn out how I dreamed it would. *sigh*
I look forward to your anniversary and wish for you many more.
I have to agree about the technology. I never dreamed I'd be doing this. My own dear, sweet parents are completely baffled by modern technology. My Dad controls the tv remote and does the driving so Mom just goes with whatever he wants to do or watch. Not me!
Have a great holiday!

Karen said...

It's good to hear from you, Renna! We all need a blogging break at some point, so go ahead and mark us all read. You'll feel better! And congrats on your one year anniversary:)

Your daughter is absolutely gorgeous! Have a very merry Christmas, my friend.

K

nikkicrumpet said...

Isn't it weird that all girls named Nikki are gorgeous and brilliant!!! Ok...maybe just YOUR Nikki...she is a beauty. Have a wonderful Holiday...Merry Christmas and we'll miss having you around. I promise to post nothing but boring nonsense until you get back!

Deb said...

Stopping by to say "Hello!". You have a very nice blog! I love how you incorporate the Word into your blog! I enjoy your blog so much that I subscribed to it via Google Reader.

Isle Dance said...

((((((Merry Christmas))))))

Tea said...

Thank the Lord for all the nifty ways to communicate these days. I'm enjoyin' every one of them! Hope you have a wonderful Christmas. :)

Don't worry you're not missin' a thing in blogland...chuckles.

vikki said...

so agree with the comment about Nikkis' smile & the spot... did not even see it til u said it! too funnie. seems like technology is the way... dunno if i always like it, but we gotta keep up with it sometimes. my blogging goes to the wayside, too with other things happening & the technology of the computer doing what it wants ~ & me not understanding it all. =) a verryyy merrie Christmas to you m'dear & may Gods' peace & comfort surround you always. hugs & blessings, vikki ♥

WhiteStone said...

So cool that you had this wonderful Christmas surprise! Oh, how we miss family when they live far away! Merry Christmas to you and to all you love.

WhiteStone said...

Well I feel like a dope. Went back and re-read and realized you were writing about last Christmas and not this past week. Yes, we can be grateful for technology that provides instant communication. Not like the old days when a letter might take months and months. How difficult that must have been for those separated from loved ones. Still...Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones.

Claudia said...

Merry Christmas. I hope your holiday is filled with love of family and friends and many blessings from our Lord above. *hugs*

Mama Bear said...

I have also been AWOL from blogging and reading and have only just been back this last week.

I'm sorry you won't get to spend Christmas with Nikki! That sure makes last year's Christmas all the more precious.

Past and present has been a theme at our house as I have been making many walks down memory lane.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Wool Winder said...

I'm sure Nikki will be missing you as much as you're missing her. I hope you get to see each other sooner than you think. Time to apply for passports and start saving up for airfare. Merry Christmas!

randi said...

I LOVE your Christmas story! What a sweet memory!

I wish you a merry Christmas, Renna! Enjoy your time getting ready and I do look forward to your coming back and visiting here in blogland!

elizabeth said...

Well I was about to send the Texas RAngers out looking for you! *smile* It's such a busy time of year and never let blogging - whether writing or reading - become a chore. It's a hobby, a blessing and a fun thing to do. Mark us all read and get the guilt off your shoulders.

And I didn't see the spot until you mentioned it and of course had to look back and see. ;)

But most of all, I love your My swan as my most favorite aunt ever says I swan all the time.

Shannon said...

I hope your funk is shortlived and only blog related! The true meaning of Christmas is here in spades this year. Love, friendship, and helping your neighbor are at the forefront as we have gone through our struggle together.
May you and your family have a blessed holiday season, and I look forward to your bloggiversary post :)

Tipper said...

I hope you enjoy this Christmas Season! And you shouldn't give a second thought to your blogging funk-it is a funny saying though!

Dana said...

Embrace the funk.

LOL~

Merry to you and yours,
Dana

Cora from Hidden Riches said...

I know all about that "blogger funk" that you are talking about. Some days, I can't think of one thing to write about that isn't the same as yesterday and the day before that!!!!! When I read everyone's blogs, I feel I have the most boring life on earth.

And yes, my grandmother wouldn't understand a thing about today's fast moving life and all the technology we have become so used to! Look how small our world has become with blogging and emails!!!!
I have more friends now than I could have ever imagined!

I hope your holiday is a very blessed one!!! Looking forward to seeing you back after the New Year!

Cora

Cora from Hidden Riches said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Debra said...

My Swaaaaan, Renna! Merry Christmas!
Love, Debra

Brenda@View From The Pines said...

She has the most beautiful smile! Looks like a movie star too, your girl. Guess what? My 1st blogoversary is the day before yours!
Brenda

Schotzy said...

Merry Christmas!!

Kimmie said...

Hi Renna;

Stopping by with a Christmas hug and all my best wishes for you and yours. Bless you!

Kimmie
mama to 6
one homemade and 5 adopted

Beth said...

Merry Christmas, Renna! By the way, I totally understand the need to mark all as read! :)

Tins and Treasures said...

Renna, I hope your are relaxing and enjoying your time away from blogland, however, I do miss your posts and sweet comments.
Happy New Year, Natalie

Hearts At Home said...

What a sweet story about your daughter coming to visit last Christmas! Happy 1st Blogaversary! Found you by way of Karla D., so glad I did!

Farm Chick Paula said...

Sorry you won't get to see Nikki this year, (who by the way is gorgeous like her momma...) but Hurray for webcam.... *sigh*

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, dear.... hope to hear from you soon!!

Karla Dornacher said...

Renna... thanks for visiting my blog and taking the time to comment... it encouraged my heart to know that God used that post to speak to yours.

And about the blog funk... I totally relate... and I get serious email funk as well... but how different life would be without it!

Blessings to you Renna for a glorious and God sweet new year...

amiable amy said...

Just came by to say hello. How's your new year? May God bless you more this year. Stay happy.

Shannon said...

Happy New Year!

smariek said...

Late as always. Never quite caught up with blog reading, so I understand how you feel. It gets overwhelming with the limited time we have. Don't feel any guilt about marking stuff as "all read".

I loved your Christmas story, what an awesome surprise visit!!! So sorry to hear she didn't get to visit last month. I hope she wins the drawing for next Christmas.

Happy Blogiversary!

Cornfield Quilter said...

Good Morning! I found your blog thru "Wanna Walk Along". I was replying to a post of hers and read the list of blogs she reads and decided to drop by. I have found the most wonderful blogs this way and I have enjoyed readin yours.
Have a wonderful day and I will drop by again soon. :D

Lea of Farmhouse Blessings said...

Thinking of you and hope your staying warm and happy! I always find that time away cure blog funk eventually.

Blessings,
Lea

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

Thanks for your comment today; are you back?

Bev said...

Come back! I miss you!

Tins and Treasures said...

Renna,
When you are ready to come to blogland, I have chosen you to receive an award. Please stop by my blog to pick it up! Thanks for the nice comments. Natalie

suzan said...

Hope your holiday was wonderful. What a beautiful daughter you have! Happy blogaversary!

Tea Time and Roses said...

Hello Renna!

So good to hear from you my friend! Hope you are having a lovely Sunday! Your daughter is a beautiful one with a beautiful smile! Renna, I am so happy you are back!!:o)

Smiles...

Beverly

Farm Chick Paula said...

Okay, I've been without you long enough.... gotta have my "Renna fix"!! *Waaaaaaa*
Miss you!

Karen said...

Hi Renna,
Passed you over at Becky's and wanted to say hi. Hope all is well in your neck of the woods. I totally get the blogging break. I'm tempted to take one myself. I'll bet it's liberating! Take your time coming back. We'll leave the light on;)

Melony at Whimsy Daisy! said...

Just a big hello and Happy New Year and an almost Happy Valentines Day with Easter not too far behind.

Isle Dance said...

I just want you to know that I'm thinking of you...and that I might get back to blogging soon...and that I hope we're lucky enough to see you 'round these parts again, too! :o)