This past Wednesday, I hosted my First Annual Notable Newberry Nerd Party, in honor of my Midde/Jr. High writing students who read Newberry Award Winning books over the summer. During our sugar-filled breakfast (smile) of O’Doodle Doo’s Donuts, several of us gathered ’round my Christmas tree.

“I love your ELF ornament,” they laughed. “That’s our favorite Christmas movie!”

“Why do you have bee hive ornaments,” another asked. “Well,” I said, “A dear friend gave those to me years ago. Represents several sweet memories.”

“Ha! A Starbuck’s ornament,” my lone male reader smiled. “Yeah, that one is from the Narita Airport in Japan,” I mused. “On my second trip to Thailand in Nov. 2009, when I returned to the Narita Airport, the sweet little Japanese Starbuck’s barista, saw me and smiled, ‘You back! You back! Green Tea Frappicino?'” she asked. I couldn’t believe she remembered me. Even though we didn’t share a language, we shared a heartfelt joy of newfound friendship. I had to buy the ornament to remember that dear moment.

Our Christmas trees tell stories, don’t they? Would you take a moment and share one of yours. This will be our “Advent Moment” for today. Stories heal. Like my Brooke’s little DOCTOR SOCK MONKEY — who today reminds me that one year ago (almost, Dec. 14 to be exact), Brooke underwent brain surgery to correct a Chiari Malformation. Today, she suffers with remaining headaches and a bit of short term memory loss (which we pray will be restored), but boy, what a difference a year makes.

Stop a moment today and let your Christmas tree talk to you! And then, talk to us!

These lovelies surround our tree reminding us of Rob’s
favorite movie in the entire world. Much like George Bailey,
we need reminding that we truly have “a wonderful life.”

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