The dining room table, thoroughly and carefully covered in a thick layer of newsprint, sports all things sparkly — glitter, tinsel, sequins, beads, sparkly ribbon — along with paper and Styrofoam balls. Some markers, glue, and gel pens complete the chaotic grouping.
Darcy stands back drinking in the excited concentration on her children’s faces.
“I’ll have to scrub the floor when they’re done. That’s quite the glue puddle.”
“I love watching Trina concentrate. Look at her sweet face.”
Bobby spots his mom and jumps off his chair. “Look at my ornament, Mom. Can I hang it on the tree now? Can I? Huh?”
“Yes, you may,” Darcy gently corrects his grammatical slip. She smiles as Bobby hangs another ornament next to the six others snugged together. Beautiful.
Brendan, the oldest of the crew, finishes his ornament and proudly shows Darcy. He’s created a beautiful birdhouse somehow. Simple. Gorgeous.
Darcy encourages him to hang it on the tree. Trina runs to place her creation “just so.”
As Darcy puts the remaining sparkly pieces away for another time, the kids run outside to enjoy the little bit of sunshine. Their laughter, like tinkling bells, washes over her.
With a few moments to herself, Darcy wanders over toward the Christmas tree and sinks into the corner of the couch.
The clustered ornaments make the tree look lopsided.
The lights twinkle in the coming dusk.
Dust motes float softly in the air creating a little bit of magic around the tree.
She lights a few candles.
Just breathe. Take it all in.
Don’t. Miss. One. Moment.
And she remembers.
Then peeled the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead: nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men.”
Henry W. Longfellow
Immanuel. God with us.
Do you hear the bells ringing?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this is accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”