Bittersweet Dreams and Starry, Starry Nights

The sky was the color of dark black ink last night: crystal clear.  I peered up to observe starry, twinkling wonders.  Was that the “The Big Dipper” hanging from above?  Is the “The Milky Way” dangling in the distance there?  Stars are sprinkled like fairy dust or golden glitter, it’s true.  God drew perfect sketches in the sky.  Was I dreaming while I waited near the car?  Shivering with my jacket on, my eyes could not turn away.  The desert is cold after the sun goes down.

My son, the “Forecaster” in my St. Louis town hasn’t called.  He is too busy now.  Snow and freezing temperatures have left the city a mess.  Schools are closed, stores have shut down and homeless ones look for a bit of warmth in the hopes of getting much-needed sleep.  The contrast between where I live and where I am now is not lost on me.  I’m thankful to be here in this part of the country, but I think and pray for all the rest.

I’m missing my boys today, my daughter-in-law, my grand-daughter, my new “grand-son” to be!  I’ve gotten messages that my friends and family in the place I call “home” are waiting for me.  It’s wonderful to see and spend time with the rest of my family here in this desert land, of course.  A gift it has been to be sure, the “gift of my father,” especially.  Not many can do such a thing, I know.  It is not lost on me.  My work travels wherever I go.  That in itself is a present to me.  Soon, it is time for me to part.  A few more days.  I’ll be ready then.  Mixed emotions.  Tears of course.  It’s always difficult to say, “good-bye.”  Bittersweet dreams of my family here, and starry, starry nights twinkling from above.

Double Celebation

It seems the holiday train has already left the station and is moving fast upon its tracks.  If I listen very closely, I can hear the whistle blow softly in the distance.  Lofty, grey steam swirls up toward heaven, rising from the engine’s shiny red smokestack.  There is no stopping it now, so I must hop aboard.  I will decorate our tree today with dancing antique ornaments and loose white popcorn on a string.  Assorted needlepoint stockings in red, blue and green, will hang from the fireplace mantel.  Drooping from above will be twisted evergreen boughs going every which way.  Their scent will soon fill my rooms with the freshest bouquet, reminding me of my home town in Michigan near the bay.