Christmas, ER, and Christmas Again

We have celebrated Christmas, had an ER trip the day after Christmas and ringing in the New Year sitting in our living room waiting for bedtime…which will most definitely be before New Years.  I feel like I have not had time to think much less write.

Christmas was quiet.  I didn’t even take many pictures!  But I did get a few to capture some of the things I like the most about Christmas!

Krisann and her Christmas make up job
definitely makes me smile!
Wilder loves Candy Canes!
This cracks me up!


First of all, I have been having some quality girl time with a friend who has been teaching me to do some wood working!  I can’t wait to finish this project with her!!  Krisann will be so excited when I am done!   So leading up to Christmas, I spent a lot of time working on this project in hopes to have it done by Christmas.  But on the 23rd, I finally realized it wasn’t going to happen!  So on Christmas Day, I did reveal my work to Krisann!  She will have a new bed soon!!  But this consumed a lot of my time!

Christmas Eve is also one of my favorite times.  That is my family time.  I have fond memories of growing up going to my Aunt Chloe’s house every Christmas Eve!  For the past three years, it has just been us and Christmas Eve has become our family time.  We haven’t always done the same thing but we’ve always focused on family.  I love the candlelight service we have at our Christmas Eve service.   I just love the warm glow of candles and soft music.

Another favorite of mine and our kids…the Christmas gift card extravaganza.  We started last year buying gift cards ahead of time and delivering them to the workers at gas stations near our house.  This year we had a few more so we blessed some firemen as well.  In the Mapco near our home, a young black African man told us how he had to get his young children up at 4 am so they could have Christmas so he could then come to work.  He went on to say we made him glad he came to work!  The smiles, the disbelief on those gas station cashiers faces were priceless.  The impact on our hearts…priceless as well!
Which one will the cashier choose?


Leaving a Mapco after blessing some workers!

Christmas fun was soon over as home health made Zine go to the ER on the 26th.  On Christmas Eve, we woke up with a cath bag pretty red instead of the nice yellow color it usually is.  Zine and I deliberately waited until the 26th to call.  We thought we would wait until Monday and then just go to the dr.  Well, as luck has it, the doctors were all still off on Monday.  With two full days of red cath bags, a husband who had quit talking and was white as a ghost, I called home health.  And they said he really needed to go to ER.  So we spent 7 and half hours in ER the day after Christmas.  Only to confirm what we already suspected…a severe UTI.

Yes we wore our masks in the ER to try to avoid other germs!


Just hanging out in one of his least favorite places!

They gave him a high powered antibiotic while we were there in the ER and then let us come home!

On the 29th and 30th, we made a trip to Collierville to my brother’s house.  It is super nice to be able to have my family there.  There’s plenty of space.  It’s a short trip.  But nevertheless, it was super super difficult for Zine.  Although his wheelchair will go in the house, it is not accessible.  My brother does all he can to ensure everything is accessible…from making a ramp to giving up his bedroom.  But there’s not a commode that is easily accessible, there is no accessible shower, etc.  And from the last time we were there until this time, Zine’s abilities have definitely changed!  It was super duper difficult!

These two guy are my some of my faves!
I’m not as short as they make me look!

My relationship with my brothers has grown over the past few years.  My oldest and I have grown a lot closer than we ever have been.  He has come to my rescue and been a part of my family since moving nearby.   Love him!  And my other brother has always held a special place in my heart!  God has really changed the dynamics of our relationship in the past few months and I am excited about what God is going to do in the next year.  Love both of my brothers!  But….they sure do make me look short!  And of course all three of us were super sensitive to the fact that our time with mom is short.  No one uttered the sentence but I know it was in all our minds…is this the last Christmas we have with mom?  Bless her heart!  She would be soooo sad to know what has happened to her mind!  I sure am glad there are no tears in heaven because if there were, I’m certain my mom would have them over what her mind has become!  She’s so pitiful!  And I’m very challenged in knowing how to love her well!  I feel like we are blindly walking this road with our parents and hoping we somehow do it right!  We definitely cherish your prayers for wisdom!

Opening presents!
Fidget quilt Chloe and I made!

My dad has difficult task care taking.  He does most of it well.  There are those areas that he doesn’t shine in…but I hope I love Zine Brooks Smith as much as he loves my mom!

And then Chloe and I (mostly Chloe) made my mom a fidget quilt.  It was a last minute decision to do this.  There’s velcro, beads to move around, a button to maneuver into a pocket, flowers to touch and pull and rub, a buckle to open and close and a tree to feel beads and braids!  I was super proud of this work.  Hopefully, it will be something that my mom can put in her lap during the cold days to come!

So this brings our Christmas to a close.  All that is left, taking the Christmas Decorations down!  And I am ready!  I have been so busy and so out of routine, I feel very scattered.  So I am looking forward to bringing some routine and organization around here in the next couple of days!


Wife of 20+ years. Mom to 3 children. Love sharing my life with weary hearts so that we can know the One who is Good, who is in Control, and Whose strength is made perfect in our weaknesses.