Share the LOVE & JOY of Christmas

Share the JOY of Christmas! Last Thursday I woke up to the perfect day.
It was raining and dark. There was no where to be but in my kitchen baking all day. I turned on the fire and white twinkling lights. Being that it was a special day, I topped my coffee off with a squirt of whipped cream and sprinkles. It was one of the most special days of the year. The day I would bake Christmas cookies for my mother. Photobucket Photobucket I tied on an old apron and scattered the cookie baking supplies across the island in the kitchen. To bring Mother close, I put an old black & white movie in the dvd player. Photobucket At this point I called my mother and told her how excited I was to be baking for her. This was the first Christmas in several years we would be staying on Bainbridge Island for the holiday. I've only spent two Christmas' in my entire life away from my parents. The cookies would be shipped across the country to the farm. Photobucket Mother was busy, scurrying about getting ready for everyone to arrive on the farm for the holidays. We took a few minutes to chat then got off the phone to go about the day. Photobucket Before I began baking, I had this over-whelming rush come over me. It was like a tidal-wave of LOVE from my mother.
For a brief moment I was in the sweetest, puffiest, cloud of gratitude, love and JOY! 
The only way I know how to describe it, is that the presence of my Mother settled in, right over me in the kitchen. Photobucket It took me off guard.
I stopped what I was doing and let myself be.
Just BE STILL within the glorious gift of my mother. Photobucket I hesitated to call Mother back.
She was busy.
I knew I couldn't express what happened without crying.
I knew as soon as I heard her voice and began to speak the tears would begin to fall. I didn't have time to cry. She didn't have time to listen. If I called I'd risk us both falling into a sentimental frame of mind. We both needed to stay busy going about what needed to be done. Photobucket Trying to suppress the urge to call, I sent Bridget a text asking her if she had ever had a moment in her kitchen where she felt the presence of her mother right there with her.
Of course she said yes! We're always going back and forth about our mothers. The way they taught us to never leave the house without lipstick. The recipes we love to bake. The handwritten recipe cards and holiday menus from our moms. Photobucket Not too long after that I sat down and called my mother.
As soon as I heard her sweet voice the tears begin to fall.
I shared with her what had happened.
I needed her to know that she and all the dogs that I have ever loved, were the PUREST, SWEETEST part of who I am. That the times that we have shared have brought about the purest JOY I have ever known. She expressed the same to me. She didn't hesitate to stop all that she was doing and join me for a sentimental moment of love and gratitude. Photobucket Awhile back mother shared a favorite song with me that she found and loved in a hymnal at church. She loved the words to the song. She wanted me to find the lyrics on the computer and maybe listen to the song. When I found the song I decided to put a little slideshow together for her and send it. It was put together in a hurry.
I almost didn't even do it, but decided to take the time.
I'm so thankful I did.
When we were on the phone tearfully sharing the love and joy we have brought about in one another's lives she brought up that slideshow. Once again she thanked me. She said it was one of the sweetest things anyone has ever done for her. Every time she reminds me of how much it meant to her I'm always so grateful I took the time to send it across the miles. She mentioned how much she would love to share it with her Sunday school class. She said she'd love to share it with lots of people but she knew it wouldn't mean as much to them as it did to her.
I'm going to share it with you today.
I'm sharing it because I'd like you to see how simple it is.
Such a simple gift that meant the absolute world to my mother.
A gift I almost didn't take the time to give.
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Share the LOVE & JOY of Christmas!
Don't hold back!
Spread the JOY!
Every way!
Stop. Just be. 
Let yourself feel and give and share.
Share and SHINE!
SHINE bright in this world!
Spread the joy of Christmas.
WINNER for the copy of Decorating Cookies is Koralee #12!
WINNER of The Pampered Chef Baking Bundle is TONI #30!
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  1. You've inspired me to make a Smilebox greeting for all three of our sons! Even though I tell them just about every day that I love them, they might get a kick of a greeting. Loved this! Merry Christmas!

  2. This is such a beautiful post in so many ways. Thanks for sharing such JOY + LOVE with us today and every day. Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones :) XO

  3. Oh MY Teresa! You have inspired me in so very many ways, but I am so glad that today, right now...I am glad I took the time to pop over here to wish you a very Merry Christmas and see your lovely video message that you sent to your mother!! I miss my mom so very much. Thank you for sharing this lovely personal message of love. Wishing you and Greg, Doogan and Isabelle the merriest Christmas ever!! xo
    Jeanne and the girlz

  4. teresa! merry christmas, sweet girl! your post brought tears to my eyes and then seeing that sweet video you made, just gave me little goosebumps! i hope the holiday finds you and your family and sweet fur nuggets over flowing with JOY! peace and love, ~terri

  5. A beautiful tribute to your mom ~ thanks so much for sharing it! Christmas was probably the most favorite of all the holidays for my mother and I miss her so much at this time of year. I've felt her close during this holiday season and I feel sure she's had a rockin' Christmas in Heaven.

    Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones!

  6. Teresa, Teresa, Teresa!

    You know I love everything about this post! I love that you let your mom know NOW how much you love and appreciate her. I love your cookies! I love your sweet sentimental nature.

    Christmas is always a time when I miss my mom so much! I think back to all she did for us...all of the magical and fun moments she created and how most of the time, I took them for granted. I'd give anything to bake up and mail her some cookies today. ♥

  7. Oh my gosh girlie! I am sitting here in my kitchen, reading your post, drinking my coffee and crying! Then I look down and see that I won the pampered chef! You've blessed my day ;)

  8. Merry Christmas lovely Teresa - hope you and Greg had a wonderful day and BIG kisses from Alfie to Doogan xxxxxxxx

  9. I love this post, and I'm saying it too! I'm a Christian!

    I loved your smile box. I am going to pass that song on to my son's kindergarten teacher. Can you imagine 24 little lights singing that song at their graduation!?!

    Will you share with me your font name that use used for the words "Chrsitmas" (It has the heart as the dot in "i") I love it.

    Thanks you for the joy and great ideas.


  10. OMGosh...that was beautiful! You are so thoughtful and sweet...has your mom stopped crying? I love this video but even more love you sharing your faith. I'm a Christian too and find it hard to share my God... this is so clear, succinct, and honest! Thanks T. Cheryl Ann

  11. OMGosh...that was beautiful! You are so thoughtful and sweet...has your mom stopped crying? I love this video but even more love you sharing your faith. I'm a Christian too and find it hard to share my God... this is so clear, succinct, and honest! Thanks T. Cheryl Ann

  12. Oh my goodness, I was just reading your FAQ and you were a K-1 teacher!!!! I'm dying!!!! I KNEW I adored you... now I get it! Funny, smart, quirky, Christian, baker, happy girl, and a teacher... we might just be cookies cut from the same batch! I teach "firsties" and they are to die for...

    Here's my teaching blog, filled with mayhem, magic, and some family fun thrown in!

    Teacher to the Core

    My hubby reads your blog too and he tells me all the time... "Blooming" has a post you are going to love!" This is his cooking and family blog.

    Writing Pad Dad

  13. How sweet! I have never heard that song before..thanks for sharing such a beautful glimpse of your deep faith in Christ..and love for your Mom.
    We need to see a baby picture, of you Teresa! I bet you were a cutie pie!

    p.s. you DO look like Doris Day!!!