A Holiday Toast

Somehow we've made it to the end of the year and Christmas is here.  Nearly all the preparations are done.  (Aren't there always last minute things that need doing even with planning?).

This Christmas Eve, I've got my day all planned out.  After an abbreviated work day (and I am BLESSED to have a job), I will hurry home and pick up my guys.  My little guy (who is not so little...I'm thinking by this time next year he may be taller than me!) will be singing and kinging at our church's 4 o'clock service.  It will be joyous chaos as it always is.

Afterwards if it's not too wet (I'm not adverse to the warm, but the wet I could do without), we will drive around a bit to see the holiday lights.  (And if it is too wet, I have a contingency plan to do this Friday evening...always the planning mom.) We will go home and have an early and light dinner.  During which I have a suspicion that a certain stuffed animal (which I am guessing will be named Snowy) might appear on our doorstep looking to be let in and find a home where he will be loved.

The guys and I will then head back to church where I will be singing and helping to lead the more traditional 9 PM service.  I'm guessing our new found stuffed animal pal will come with us.  (And it will help keep my son occupied during the 40 minutes he'll be waiting while I rehearse for the service.)

After the service, we will head home, put out some cookies for Santa, wish our elf Ralph a safe journey, and head to bed.  Or at least the boy will.  I and my husband will have a few other little things to take of before heading upstairs to fall asleep as A Christmas Story plays on in the background.

There is one more thing that I will do before I turn in for the evening.  It's a personal holiday tradition that started not too long ago; and by that I mean about 10 or so years.  I will make myself a small "frosty adult beverage." (And you thought frozen beverage makers were only for making kiddie drinks!) I make my version of what was called a Blue Spoodle as it was a drink that was featured at the restaurant Spoodles which was found on the Boardwalk at the Walt Disney World Resorts.  My husband had one once and LOVED it.  So much so that he found a recipe that "recreated" the drink.  This recreation isn't the same as the beloved original, but I've taken it and modified it a little (much of which depends on how much of which alcohol I have in my cabinet).  All this somehow became a Christmas Eve tradition for me.  (Because what says Christmas Eve more than a frosty adult beverage topped with whipped cream?)  After all is said and done, I will take my Blue Spoodle, get into my pjs, turn of the lights, watch A Christmas Story and sip until the glass is drained and Ralphie and his family have enjoyed a Chinese Christmas dinner.

I look forward to this quiet part of the evening every year.  As I was thinking about it this morning I was a little sad.  You see at one time, and I don't remember exactly when, I had told my friend Mary that I would make a batch for both of us to enjoy.  I don't remember if we discussed it at a party (a New Year's Eve long ago) or while we were sitting by her family pool enjoying the sun and watching the kids swim and splash.  (There were ALWAYS kids around Mary.)  I never did get around to making that batch for whatever reason.  And since Mary passed away earlier this month, I never will. It

It may sound small and unimportant, but it is my regret nonetheless and a reminder to me that you shouldn't put off things; even the simple little things.  

Tonight I will make myself a Blue Spoodle.  I will climb into bed and watch A Christmas Story.  And I will think of Mary.  I will toast to Mary...I will wish that she could be here this holiday and share a Blue Spoodle with me.

This Christmas, I will remember Mary and I will try to be as kind, compassionate and caring as she was.  And the next time a friend and I say we should do something, no matter how small we WILL do it.  I will be sure to find the time; no matter how imperfect that time may be.  I will do it and I will remember Mary.


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