angels we have heard on high.

I went by the cemetery to see Gabriel’s grave and put Christmas flowers there last week.  After I put his flowers out, I went down to the other side of the cemetery to put Christmas flowers on my Granny’s grave.  They are buried in the same, large cemetery.  Gabriel’s grave is in the back of the cemetery, up on a hill in a small patch called Babyland.  My Granny’s grave is down near the front on a nice, large flat patch that is the Veteran’s section.

As I finished pushing those flowers in the ground at her freshly buried spot, I stepped back and looked around.  All I could think was what happened??  I stood there looking out over this very different patch in the very same cemetery where my son is buried.  And all I could think was what happened??

angels we have heard on high

This whole year we’ve been living it, and when you’re knee deep in it, you don’t really get to ask that.  But when you step back and realize, wait a minute, my child is in Heaven, the how did we get here?  and what happened? come to mind.  What happened to get us here?  What happened to us?  How is that this time last year life was totally normal and this year it’s crushing?  What happened?

 

Then I got in the car and the song that immediately came on was Angels We Have Heard On High.  I was hit hard.  It was a pretty cool moment.  And I immediately thought of my angel and felt comforted.  So no matter what happened, or how we got to this point, it doesn’t really matter.  What does matter is that we have an angel, and we have hope.  So no matter what happened, we have hope.

 

 

Angels We Have Heard on High

Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o’er the plains
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be
Which inspire your heavenly song?

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Come to Bethlehem and see
Christ Whose birth the angels sing
Come, adore on bended knee
Christ the Lord, the newborn King

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

See Him in a manger laid,
Whom the choirs of angels praise;
Mary, Joseph, lend your aid,
While our hearts in love we raise.

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

 

 

 

 

 

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reminders of hope.

This song is helping put my feet back on the ground today.  These reminders are good for my soul.  I hope these truths remind you that He never lets go.

“In joy and pain, in sun and rain, You’re the same.  You never let go.”

 

 

Loving this song.  [The video, in my opinion, isn’t awesome.  So I just pulled it up and listened to the song while I did other things.  Just a heads up.]

 

 

 

fall family pictures.

This fall our sweet friend took our family pictures again.  I love them, and I am so happy this has become a tradition for us.  Erin Rodgers is not only a talented photographer but a very thoughtful friend, too.  She wanted to honor Gabriel and help us remember him by gifting us with family photos.  I am so thankful she did this. 

I had actually thought about booking fall pictures with her this year, but then I thought that I didn’t want to take family pictures this year – that it would be too hard.  I wouldn’t have done it without some gentle nudging from her, and I’m so thankful for that.  Now we have pictures for this year, and in the future I will be able to look back and remember how those pictures were taken during our hardest season.  It’s a really special thing to have. 

 

We were also able to bring along our Gabriel bear.  Obviously, I missed having our sweet G in our family pictures, but it was neat to have a symbol for the member of our family who is missing in the pictures.  Plus, Jack thought it was so special to bring his Gabriel bear and get to take pictures with him. 

 

Erin, thank you for these sweet pictures.  We love them, and I’m glad you encouraged me to do this even though it was hard this year.  We are so thankful for you!! 

 

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seven months.

Seven months – it sure has gone by fast.  I miss our baby every day. 

 

Seven months

 

December at the cemetery is looking dark and dead.  But there is beauty in the sparkling Christmas flowers.  Tomorrow I’m adding a Christmas wreath to Gabriel’s grave. 

the tree.

Is it just me or did this Christmas season just explode?  Maybe I’ve just missed it in the past, but this year seems to have gone from Thanksgiving, to full Christmas swing in a fast second.  Whew, it’s wearing me out. 

 

But before I got stressed out about the craziness of it all, we had a great weekend after Thanksgiving kicking the Christmas season off on the right foot.  On Saturday we went on a five hour adventure looking for our Christmas tree.  We found a beauty – making it all worth it. 

 

A little about our tradition —  I grew up with artificial Christmas trees thanks to a lot of allergies in our house and my childhood asthma.  Once Tommy and I got married I knew that I wanted our family to start a tradition of getting a real tree every year.  I LOVE this.  I love having something so fresh and alive.  I love the smell.  I love the process of picking it out and bring it home.  Man, it’s the best. 

 

We’ve always had pretty small trees, but we have really tall ceilings in this house, and last year our little tree looked pretty sad in this large-ceilinged room.  So this year we went bigger.  Turns out it looks smaller in the field next to other trees than it does in our living room.  We have a big tree.  But I LOVE it!  It’s magnificent. 

 

tree collage  

 

 

Jack and Lauren Jack and Tommy 

 

 

 Jack picks his tree

 

 

Our tree isn’t decorated yet, but I love the look of just the lights on it for a short while.  Here’s a little look at it and Jack playing with his nativity set. 

lights on tree

 

 

Are you a real tree or a fake tree person?  Got tree traditions?  I want to hear them!