HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN - merchants slogan: "We don't have it but we can get it for you."

Thursday, December 9, 2010


Not too long ago I received this photo of my little pal Sebastian Brown.

Sebastian Brown is a wonderful sounding name - it would be a great stage name as well as that of a professional football player or an actor.

Sebastian is here pictured with his mom, Julie, . This year their favorite Green Bay Packer is Charles Woodson, jersey 21, and Julie is wearing a number 93, which was Gilbert "Grave Digger" Brown's number back in the day. That is fitting because of the family name - but you've probably figured that out already.

But that's not really today's subject. My thesis for this morning relates to the old saw "Christmas is for kids." And not too long ago I got a great photo of Sebastian sitting on Santa's lap (published it to my Face Book) and it set me thinking about how wonderful Christmas is for a child. Thinking back over my own life, remembering the smell of a freshly cut fir, decorated lavishly with "bubblers", really large candle shaped lights, tinsel, and garlands. The glow of an artificial candle in the window, sitting right in front of a frosted window pane.

We played Christmas music when it was supposed to be played, at the beginning of Advent not just before Thanksgiving as they are now!!

Don't get me started!

And the gayly wrapped presents would suddenly appear beneath the tree - after we all found out about Santa - and on Christmas Eve, the Heagles would milk about thirty cows, take our baths, gather around the tree and say the Rosary, which only prolonged a child's agony of wondering what he got for Christmas.

Then came the thrill of opening presents. I can't remember if gifts were distributed one at a time or if there was a melee, but in no time the living room floor was strewn with gift wrappers.

We were not a wealthy family but I think that made us better people because one or two gifts meant a lot more to us than it would to others.

I do remember the one year that I found where mom had stashed our already wrapped presents, and I had asked for a Robin Hood Crossbow (all plastic except for the rubber band and it shot those suction cup rubber tipped darts. Every day when mom wasn't looking, I would try to determine what my present was by feeling it up.

Finally, going out of my little mind, I actually made a little tear which revealaed the printing and it was, indeed what I wanted.

The real lesson came on Christmas Eve when I had to act the big phony and look happy and surprised. That never happened again.

So, Sebastian Brown, enjoy these chilld's Christmases to the utmost! You are a beautiful child with a very strong name!


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