Thursday, December 30

A Bit of Joy, Part 8

Hope you all had a nice Christmas.

This past week was a bit different for me. My mom has been in California since December 8th because my grandpa went to the hospital with pneumonia. He passed away December 20 so we didn't have my mom around on Christmas Eve and Day. Then we all flew down to California on the 27th for the funeral on the 28th.

Needless to say, there was still family time and more than there would have originally been. There was also lots of laughter. But there was/is sadness, loss, and grieving. This year, more than ever, I found Christmas joy in the birth of the Savior more so than in the "tidings of good cheer."

Anyhow, here are some joys from the last few days
  1. Having family friends come to the funeral, to support our family...what a blessing that was! They had minimally met my grandpa over the years they've know my parents. We didn't expect them to come but they showed up anyways.
  2. The fact that my immediate family of 6 all enjoys one another's presence. We have fun together, we make each other laugh, and we just generally enjoy spending time together. A couple family highlights would be playing "apples to apples" on Christmas Day and all six of us squeezing into my grandparent's car that really only sits four comfortably, five if you're skinny(er), and six if you have a small kid that can squeeze in the front between the parents...we made it work and laughed about it!
  3. Lovely, hand-crafted scenery. I had lay-overs in Salt Lake City and San Francisco and then spent the rest of the time in Ontario, California. Each of those locations had beautiful scenery: snow-dusted mountains, reddish sunsets, glistening water, green rolling hills, and sun that beamed down on my face.
  4. Spending time with extended family. Having grown up apart from my extended family, I would say that I am not generally close to any of them. However, I do love them. So for all the moments where there was connection, affection, and concern for one another, those moments brought joy.
  5. Joy comes in having my grandmother know me and my name. My grandma is so cute...she's a little trooper. But she has dementia and is sometimes often fuzzy on the details. But every time I was able to see her the past 48 hours, she knew who I was and was so happy to see me.
  6. Joy comes in the legacy that my grandpa left behind. I talked about legacy a short while ago and these past three days, I got to hear about my grandpa's...I can't even begin to count how many people shared during the service or approached me later on to say how much they loved/appreciated or will miss my grandpa and why. I loved hearing the reasons why.
  7. Giving a present away. The gift that blessed me is now able to bless others. I don't think my brother will mind.
  8. Sweet accommodations that my parents gave me that weren't necessary but done anyways. A coffee stop on the way to the airport, Wednesday morning. A burger run (to the best hamburger joint ever) right after my arrival to California, on Monday.
  9. Ooh...another joy was the sermon from this past Sunday. It was a great sermon from Isaiah 9:6 on the four names given to Christ and how those attributes can impact us. I needed this sermon.
I think this list is sufficient for today. Thanks for letting me share.

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