"I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas!"
I've heard that cute, jolly song, quite a few times over the last few days. I remember when it first made a "come-back." Ashley was just a little girl, and her and her dad would sing it at the top of their lungs. Just precious! :) Which made me think of my favorite childhood Christmas songs....
... from The Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas Album....
Each Christmas, my brother and I would pull the worn record from it's cardboard sleeve, and play it non-stop on the record player...or as much as our mother could tolerate it! We'd scream and sing, "ALVIN, ALVIN....ALVIN!!!!," along with the Christmas Song. The repetition of those three annoying voices we loved so well, marked a Christmas Tradition for us!
See the expression on Dave's face below, it mimicked my mom's. At the time, we couldn't understand why she didn't appreciate the Chipmunks as we did. She really was a good sport about it. Not asking us to turn it off, just turn it down....way down! LOL! This was the one record that never seemed to get scratched.
Now that I am older, with children of my own who have resurrected Alvin and his sidekicks, I can sympathize! :)
Another TRADITION of our family, was to assist a family or buy gifts for children less fortunate each Christmas. My parents were, (still are), very tight with their money. But there was always money in the budget for helping others. My mom would let us shop for the things we would give, taking us along to deliver. And to this day, the tradition carries on with my family. The old saying, "It is better to give than to receive," really applies. Giving to others in need will bless you beyond belief! We learned that GIVING is a gift in and of itself.
The song, "Give Me Your Eyes," by Brandon Heath speaks of this. (On my Playlist....) It is so easy to get caught up in gifts for my family, my children. Making sure I fulfill each item on their list. Making sure that on Christmas morning, they are happy and all their wishes have come true. Wanting it to be a wonderful and magical day for them. ....no disappointments! All the while there are so many children who may get very little or nothing for Christmas. Maybe not even wake up to a warm house, wearing warm clothes, with food for breakfast.
I am thankful to my mom, who made sure that this tradition of helping others, was a foremost important one for us. She made us feel that is was a privilege to help others and became a highlight of our Christmas. And I only hope that I can instill this in my children, that one day my future grandchildren carry on. I know that as they bless others, with just a portion of what God has blessed us with, they will be blessed as well.
I leave you with these Encouraging Words for Wednesday....
"Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter- when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. " Isaiah 58: 7-9