Lynn's Continuing Journal

Monday, January 1, 2001

Well, here we are in all our Holly Daze Splendor! Left to right is Mercy, Faith, Ruby & Spirit...and of course, me! I can tell you for sure it was an adventure to take all four of these guys into the studio and attempt to produce pictures as if we were having fun! Actually, they did quite well, and I did have a friend go with me to help. But by the time we were finished it was a toss up as to who was ready to go out the door the fastest! Good thing I don't attempt this often.

I haven't been updating my page as often. It seems as though the past few weeks have been taken up with work and getting the house put back together after new carpet, vinyl flooring, painting and drapes. It's amazing how time gets away from one when you're not looking. Then, of course, the holidays...yes, the holidays. Oh how I dreaded from Thanksgiving until New Years. I think that's why I buried myself in all these projects. I thought, "Just keep busy and you won't have to think about other things." It did help to take my mind of things but I've found you just can't skirt around this thing called "grief". It really is a journey that one must walk from the beginning to the end but little stops along the way helps to keep one on the straight and narrow.

It was difficult this Christmas, from the shopping to the wrapping, to the dinners without Cees. He so loved the holiday season. He loved being with his family more than anything even more than the presents, even more than the food if that could ever be.. LOL He loved to see the smiles on the kid's faces when they got a gift that they really, really wanted. Especially the grandkids. He didn't like to shop, standing made his knees hurt, but he was a wizard when it came to wrapping them. Christmas Eve was our night to wrap and we would haul out the paper, ribbon and bows. He actually made his creases in the paper with a ruler so the package would have that crisp, clean edge to it. My job was the bows and the ribbons. To say the least, I think I only wrapped three gifts.  The others all went in bags.

Christmas Eve I visited Cees' mom. Took her gift out and spent some really quality time. She seems to be doing well....but I know this season was the most difficult for her since her husband passed away six years ago. It's hard enough to lose your spouse but then your only child, I can only imagine. I call her often and we have wonderful talks...she's really looking forward to the new baseball season. Rumor has it she got a Mariner's baseball shirt for Christmas and will be wearing it during the games. I can just picture her doing that. She's a strong lady that Mother-In-Law of mine.

Christmas morning I went out to Ray and Lisa's. Ray was our Best Man at our wedding and the closest thing to a brother that Cees ever had. They went with me to the cemetery but I found that they had been there prior to that and had brought a beautiful little Christmas tree and placed it on his headstone. That really meant a lot to see, Cees wasn't able to have a Christmas tree for the time he was sick. His immune system couldn't tolerate one, so we never bothered to put one up. They had decorated it with little drums and hearts and angels. It was wrapped with gold beads and topped with a precious little angel. Lisa gave her to me before we left and I made sure to take a picture of the tree.

Christmas afternoon I went to my daughter's new house they had built last summer. She was so excited to be able to have Christmas dinner there with all the family present. She did a wonderful job on the meal and the house was beautifully decorated. The most special thing she did for me, as well as for herself I'm sure, is she set a place at the table for her Dad in remembrance of him. She wanted to say, "Even though you're not here Dad, we know you're here in spirit and you're in our hearts until we all can be together again".  She was so concerned that it would make me sad, but actually, it made me feel a little better just having that place set for him.

I enjoyed watching the grandkids open there presents and we each took turns opening our own. We've tried to make it a tradition to take turns opening a gift at a time so everyone can appreciate the thought and effort put forth.  It makes for some wonderful memories and it makes the suspense last longer too.  I was doing pretty good until my son and his lovely new bride gave me their present. Weeks before I was asked what I wanted for Christmas and I told everyone, "Just gift certificates to the Christian Bookstore so I can get a favorite portrait I wanted".  My kids gave me my present and it was a calendar of 12 months of rainbows. Taped to it was a computer printed gift certificate and they said when they got to the store they didn't have anymore certificates left. So, they made their own and would go with me when I was ready to buy the portrait. I thought that was great but then all of a sudden, Jennifer said, "But, we thought that was pretty we got you this instead".  I knew what it was when they brought it out, but the closer I got to unwrapping it, well, I lost it. They had actually bought the portrait for me. It's a signed, limited edition and this is what it looks's called "SAFELY HOME" by Ron DiCanni and it hangs in my living room and brings so much comfort when I think I can't go on.


I only have to look at it to be reminded that when Cees left us he went to be with the Father and this is what must have taken place. The look on Jesus' face just says it all.  It's like He's saying, "I'm so sorry you had to go through what you did to get home, but I am so glad you are here".  The second best thing about the portrait is, if you look real close, it looks as though the new arrival has a pair of Hush Puppy slippers on.  Those were the only slippers Cees wore and the kids took turns buying him new ones each Christmas.  In fact, Cees was wearing them on the day he went home to be with the Lord. I will treasure that portrait forever.

New Year's was different, we usually stayed home and saw the New Year in just watching TV or spending it with the neighbors...usually setting off fireworks and then going to bed. This year I had resigned myself to just being here with the girls, watching a movie on TV and then going to bed. But, my son and daughter-in-law called about 9:00 and said, "Let's go see a movie".  So, at midnight, at the turn of the century and the beginning of a new year, we were sitting in a movie theater watching "Castaway". Afterwards we went to our cars and Jennifer pulled out a bottle of Apple-grape Cider and we toasted a new year and a new beginning...they made me promise to call them when I got home just to know I'd made it...oh silly them, but I did the same thing...LOL

So, here we are. 01/01/01 The first day of the first month of the first thousand years. A new century and a new year that holds what? No one knows, but I do know that we have to go forward and grab onto it with everything we have. Time waits for no one and one can never go back only forward. We learn from the past, we hang onto the memories that are so very precious. We take them with us into the new year and add to them....that is what life is all about and I know that that is what Cees would expect us to do.... As he would say, "What It Is" not "What It Was".  So precious friends and we go...! ! ! ! ! !

Have a Peaceful & Healing New Year and may God Bless and Keep You All!

God Bless,

Lynn Crawford & The Girls,
Mercy * Spirit * Faith * & Ruby

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Genesis 9:13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. KJV

Remember friends, Cees and all the others that have gone on before us are still on their first day. We're still working on those thousand.

II Peter 3:8 But beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.