Friday, December 22, 2017

Kelsey's Christmas - Part 7

Good morning FFFs,
I can not believe it's the 22nd of December! Christmas is Monday! Impossible. At least it feels that way. Has your December disappeared like Christmas cookies before hungry children? Or has it lingered like fruitcake?

What has happened this week?
Last Saturday I joined some other friends from church at an assisted living center nearby, and we sang and played Christmas music for an hour. They loved it!
Sunday evening was the Christmas program at church. My sister and I do bells with the children, and they did a great job playing "The First Noel" for the program. There was a fellowship meal afterwards and lots of visiting.
Come Monday late afternoon, it was time to head back to church for caroling. Only this year I was in charge of it! It took some creativity to fit everyone into only 10 vehicles since we had 65 people going! But we did it. Each vehicle had glow sticks to tape to the back window of their car so we could keep track of each other. We went to 7 widows' houses and sang to them. One lady said she felt like she had her own personal choir. ๐Ÿ˜Š And a car stopped in the road to listen to us. Then we went back to the church for chili, cookies, and hot drinks.
Tuesday was quiet and I got to stay home.
Wednesday was the same. We ended up watching a Christmas movie while we ate supper.
Yesterday was the first day of winter. And guess what? It got up to 74ยบ! Yeah, so much for cold and snow. We were going to babysit my nieces and nephews last evening, but two of them were getting over being sick, and my brother had the chills and fever now. So they all stayed home.
This afternoon we have the first puppet outreach with the puppet team from church. I know some of the kids are sick, so hopefully we'll still have enough to do it.

Not sure about tomorrow. My brother and his family were supposed to be coming to do Christmas with us, but that may have to wait until after Christmas if they're still sick.

And there you have it. I won't be posting next week. At least I doubt it. We'll be heading up to my grandparents' house that morning. So Merry Christmas! And happy New Year!

Kesley's Christmas
Part 7

    It was planned at last. Zoe had given up her idea of costumes and a large group once she found out that Kelsey didn’t want it. Once again borrowing the truck from his uncle, Wally drove it over to the McKenzie’s home, the back filled with straw and a pile of warm blankets. The night was colder than it had been before, for the sky was covered in clouds and everyone expected it to begin snowing before they returned. Mr. and Mrs. McKenzie had decided to join the fun, and Mike gave up his seat behind the wheel to Mr. McKenzie.
    “Belle, do you want to ride up front with Daddy and me?” Mrs. McKenzie asked.
    Belle shook her head quickly.
    Huddled together under blankets, the riders managed to stay warm until the old folks’ home was reached. Then everyone climbed out and headed inside where it was warm.
    Walking the halls, the carolers filled the air with the sweet and joyful tidings of Christ’s birth. At many doors, Kelsey would slip inside and return a few moments later, leaving the door open wide so the resident could hear better.
    Back again in the truck, Kelsey watched the lights of the home until they had disappeared behind them. She hoped they had left a bit of Christmas cheer behind them.

    Altogether the night was one to remember. The carolers walked the neighborhood where the mayor, doctor and several other influential people in town lived, bringing most to their doors to listen. They visited Wally and Zoe’s grandma, and much to her delight, came around the house to the door which led to her apartment from the garden. The next stop was Aunt Olive who invited them all to come in and warm up a few minutes. This invitation they gladly accepted, for their toes and fingers were a bit numb. After thawing out and singing a few more carols, the group returned to the truck. A few snowflakes were starting to fall, and heads tipped back squinting against the light flakes.
    “Are we heading back to the house now?” Mr. McKenzie asked as everyone began climbing back into the truck.
    “Daddy,” Kelsey begged, hurrying over to him and speaking low, “can’t we carol around our own neighborhood? No one ever does it, and I know so many of the families would enjoy it.” She didn’t add, “More than some of the others had,” but she couldn’t help thinking it. It hadn’t been her idea to visit the wealthy neighborhoods, and she had remained hidden in the back of the group, feeling shy and out of place.
    “Well, I don’t see why not. It’s not late yet. Perhaps we’ll just park the truck at home though and you all can walk.”
    Kelsey nodded. She knew Belle at least was tired and cold.
    Mr. McKenzie told the others of the plan as Kelsey took Wally’s hand to climb into the truck.

    The snow was still light when they reached home, and everyone scrambled out.
    “It’ll be good to walk a little,” Lottie said, brushing the hay off her coat. “Where are we going?”
    Kelsey mentioned a few names, and Lottie started off the others trailing behind, except for Mrs. McKenzie, Belle, and Shannon who had stayed behind to warm up and heat the water for hot drinks.
    Lottie suggested that they sing as they walked. “That way more houses can hear us.”
    “I thought we wanted the people to hear, not the houses,” Mike teased.


    Finding the snow growing heavier and sticking to the streets, Wally pulled his sister from the lively conversation she was having. “We’d better get home, Zoe,” he said. “We don’t want Mom and Grandma to worry and send Dad out looking for us.”
    “Oh, I had so much fun! Thank you for thinking of it, Kels!” And Zoe gave her friend a warm hug. “And thank you, Mr. and Mrs. McKenzie for letting us join your family again.”
    “You’re welcome to join us anytime you want to Zoe,” Mrs. McKenzie replied heartily. “And you too, Wally.”
    “Thank you, ma’am. Good night everyone. Merry Christmas!”
    Calls of “Merry Christmas” followed Wally and Zoe as they hurried through the falling snow to the truck. The blankets had all been shaken, folded, and set in the front so the snow wouldn’t make them wet.
    Shivering in her seat, Zoe folded her arms around her and looked back at the brightly lit house. “You know, Wally,” she said, “the McKenzie family is one of the few families I know who share the real joy of Christmas.”
    “Yep. I noticed that Kelsey didn’t seem to be enjoying herself when we were in our neighborhood except when we sang to Grandma. But when we were singing for those who were lonely or sick, she seemed to forget herself.”
    “I’m sure she did. She has such a tender heart. Wally, I’m glad Kelsey suggested going caroling. It’s made Christmas extra special this year.”

Have you ever been caroling?
Are you ready for Christmas?
Are you tired of trying to read this blog each week?


Liberty Bluebelle said...

Yup, regularly. It's fun to see people's faces soften at the words of peace and hope and love.
I think I'm almost ready. =D
Oh, no, not at all. I read the update parts when the post comes in my mailbox, and get around to the story part sooner or later. =)
This was a good story. I'm beginning to understand Kelsey a little better, and I liked the whole message of sharing joy with others who might not hear it. =)
Thank you for the warm, satisfied feeling this story gave me!
Merry Christmas, and may you have a rejoicing, refreshing, and encouraging rest of the year!

In Joy,
Liberty Bluebelle

"Lingering like fruitcake" made me laugh. BD

"Glory to God in the highest; and on earth peace, goodwill toward men."

Rebekah said...

I'm not ready either. ;)
Thank you for reading my story. I'm glad to know you enjoyed it.
Merry Christmas, Liberty!