It's another cloudy day here. I'm longing for a few days of sunshine. Any of you readers have some to share? It's been cloudy for quite a while and is supposed to continue. And we don't even have any snow to make it better. Oh, well. :)
This has been a crazy week! And I have much I need to do!
Last Friday evening I went to a Christmas party at my best friend's house. Then came home and helped babysit the kiddos who were over.
Saturday I finally finished the quilt I was working on and put the quilt frame away.
On Sunday I had music practice at church before Sunday School, then we had my brother and his family over for lunch since it was Dad's birthday. We ate chilly, made cookies (and decorated them), decorated more of the house, and enjoyed the afternoon.
Monday came and I finished the decorating, practiced the violin, and worked on other things.
Then came Tuesday. I left the house about 1:30, drove to the home of my Heart-Sister and from there we headed up to my grandparents' house. After a delicious supper we headed out to see the lights of the Plaza
Wednesday went by so quickly, that it feels like I must have missed it. My heart-sister and I went out to help Grandma with the Christmas Bureau. We spent the morning taking "shoppers" around. These are all people who need help with food and Christmas things for various reasons. In the afternoon I assisted in the back with checking applications while H-S worked up front with the computers. It was so much fun! We ate supper with Grandma & Grandpa and then drove back to H-S's house.
Thursday I went and visited another Heart-Sister and her 3 month old baby who I hadn't seen before. We had a lovely visit before I drove home. Spent the rest of the day trying to catch up and working on TCR-4. :)
I don't think I'm going to be sitting around twiddling my thumbs wishing for things to do. I have plenty to keep me busy! There's writing, cleaning, working on Christmas presents, replying to e-mails, and I won't bore you with the rest of my long list. :)
I hope you enjoy this next part of the story. I will try to get more posts up next week.
First Christmas in America
Hearing a soft stirring, Klara turned her head. Papa was sitting by the fire, his head in his hands. For some time she lay there watching him. Was he sleeping, or was he too, thinking of Mama and the others? Just when she had decide he must be asleep, Papa lifted his head and sighed.
“Papa,” she breathed.
Papa turned his head. “Yah, my Klara.”
Slipping from the blankets, taking care to let in as little cold air as possible, Klara crept over to Papa and was soon nestled in his lap with his strong, warm arms around her.
“Why are you avake, Daughter?” he asked softly.
“I don’t know. It was so quiet, and then I wondered what Mama was doing. I miss her, Papa.” She swallowed hard. “I wish the others could have come with us.”
For several minutes Papa didn’t speak, then hugging her closer, he whispered, “I miss Mama too, Klara. And I know she misses all of us.”
“Do you think Mama and the others will be here by Christmas?” Klara looked up. The low flames of the firelight flickered on Papa’s face.
“I don’t know. I pray it may be so, but Christmas is very soon . . .” His voice died out for several minutes. The pressing a kiss on Klara’s golden hair he whispered, “You should be asleep, my Klara, else you vill be too tired to clean in the morning.” He kissed her upturned face, and she scurried off to crawl under the blanket next to Kristina.
When Klara next awoke, the faint light of early dawn tinged the room with a rosy glow. She could hear the low voices of Papa and Anastasiya talking.
“It is only what we really need, Papa,” Ana was saying. “We have some food, but not enough for more than today. Beds and curtains can wait.”
“It does not seem like much, Ana, but I have very little money. I vill get vhat I can. After Christmas, vhen I have my job ve vill buy more things.”
“Of course, Papa. We can wait.”
There was a moment of silence and then Papa spoke again. “I hope Mama and the others can make it here. I did not have much money to give them.”
“Mama is good with money, Papa. Besides,” Ana reassured, “Viktor is with them. He has a good head for money.”
“Yah,” Papa sighed. “I vill vorry no longer.”
The sun sparkling on the snow woke the younger children later in the morning and everyone scrambled from their hard beds eager to start the new day.
“Who needs lamps or candles with such sunlight as this?” Polina exclaimed. “I want to see the whole house in the light.”
“Not until breakfast is over and the beds have been folded,” Ana directed. “Then you may have a little time to see the house before we begin to clean.”
“I wish it were clean already!”
“My impatient Polina,” Papa chuckled with a shake of his head. “I fear the cleaning won’t do itself.”
Running over to him, Polina flung her arms around his neck. “I won’t complain, Papa,” she promised. “I only wish things would happen now so I didn’t have to wait for them.”
“Well, your breakfast won’t wait for you,” Ana called. “If you don’t want it, I will give it to the others.”
Klara watched Polina fly to get her breakfast. She could understand her sister's impatience some times, but Klara was looking forward to cleaning their new house. It would be a lot of hard work, but the Ivanski children were used to that. And it would be fun to see all the house coming clean. “And after it’s clean, it will be ready for Mama!” Klara’s thoughts brought a smile to her face.
It wasn’t long before the simple meal was over and water was heating before the fire. Papa had taken Ana’s list of badly needed items and set out for town. It would be a long walk, but Klara knew Papa had often walked many miles in the Old Country in the bitter cold and snow.
“Now come,” Ana directed, “we will take a look at the house and then we must clean.”
The day passed rapidly in the newly inhabited house. The nearest neighbor was a good mile away and no one knew the Ivanski family had moved in, so no one came to call and interrupt the work of cleaning. By the time Papa arrived back laden with supplies, nearly all the downstairs rooms were sparkling.
Looking around in approval, Papa nodded his head. “You have done vell, my children. Mama vould be pleased to see such clean rooms.”
“Papa,” Kristina asked, “when is Mama coming home? Are she and the others going to be here for Christmas? When will Christmas be here, Papa?”
“I do not know when Mama and the others will come, my inquisitive one. But I do know that Christmas will be here after two days.”
Marina and Nikolay shouted with joy at that news, but though Papa smiled, Klara saw his eyes weren’t happy. “What can be wrong?” she thought, turning to answer Ana’s call. “Could it be Papa thinks Mama and the others won’t be here for Christmas? We will all pray they come. God answers prayers, I know He does. He let us leave the Old Country and kept this house from being filled when we were delayed. I’m sure Mama and the others will be here.”
Supper that night was cooked on the stove though the family still sat on the floor. Papa put a string across the front room from which Ana hung a few blankets. This kept the warmth of the fire from escaping in the large room. That evening, by the light of the fire, Papa read some verses from his old Bible. and the family prayed together before they crept into their makeshift beds and fell almost instantly asleep.
What do you think will happen?
Are you enjoying this story?
Will you be back?