Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Christmas 'Furry' Quilts - A Personal Memory

Years ago, when I was a young teenager, my parents hired the neighbors who ran a local toy company (making stuffed animals), to make all of us eight children Christmas blankets (furry quilts) for our beds. None of us had ever had matching bedspreads, and we all shared a room with a sibling or two.

Unbeknownst to each of us, Mom and Dad had selected colors they thought we'd each like and...on Christmas morning surprised us with new furry bedspreads.

For some reason, this memory stands out to me as one of the most precious, Dad was on a teacher's salary, and with eight children to raise and ten mouths to feed and clothe, money was often very tight.
Similar to ours - but ours were large checkered and furry  :)

None of us expected this for Christmas - so it was 'extra special' and meaningful to me.

My sister Melody and I shared a room.  After opening our gift - we rushed to our bedroom to place our new red and white checkered 'quilts' on top of our beds and to 'redecorate' our room.

I was telling my precious new husband the other day that when I was growing up - and couldn't afford new items, I'd rearrange furniture - for 'fresh starts'.  It was often fun to see how cleaning and organizing and rearranging could make us feel like we had a new clean slate.

Christmas can have a variety of memories for most of us; some good, some sad, some lonely, some joyful and pleasant.

I think that the reason our furry Christmas Quilts stands out for me as a wonderful one was that I knew of the sacrifices my parents must have made in all our behalf.  And....the sacrifices the neighbors, who ran a busy company, also must have made as they had a large family as well, and a busy toy company.

I pray that some of the memories my children had in childhood, are pleasant ones.  I raised them alone for most of their lives, we lived on very little and Christmases were often frugal and small.  I tried to find or make things that would help them feel loved and cherished.  And, we were sometimes the recipients of others' kindnesses - which, to this day, touches me deeply.

I'm grateful for this time of year where we can celebrate the love we feel for one another, and the greatest love of all; the Christ child Himself; our Savior, Redeemer and Friend.  May we always reflect on Him; the real meaning of the season, and find ways to share His love and kindness with those around us.