"This illness is to fatigue,
what a match is to a nuclear bomb.
It's an absurd mischaracterization!"
~Laura Hillenbrand

December 2, 2008

Back to Questions - Favorite Holiday

I'm finally getting back to those questions I said anyone could ask about me! That was way back in September and I only answered one out of the three that were posted! (BTW- you can still ask questions about me and I'll do my best to answer!)

I'm going to jump to question 3 from Linda - because it's that time of year.

Question: "What's your favorite Holiday and Why"

My favorite Holiday runs for a whole month! It begins on Thanksgiving Day when we spend the day as a family, eating chex mix, watching Miracle on 34th street and making a meal that lasts for a week!

At the Thanksgiving table, we not only give thanks to God for the many things from the past year, but we also begin Christmas. We always play a Kenny G Christmas CD during dinner and the kids each get a new Christmas ornament for their collections. I put them, wrapped up, on their plate. A few years back, I discovered a wrapped gift on my plate! And the past few years, they've chipped in and bought me an ornament too! (since they are beginning to leave and take their ornaments with them) :-)

Usually the day after Thanksgiving we go out looking for that perfect Christmas tree to cut down. Though, with young adults who have to work, the past two years we've had to do it on Sunday afternoon instead.

We decorate the tree together and we must have fudge and a special CD of music that I grew up with - but my kids now love - The New Christy Minstrels!

Then, the month holds those special times when we gather to watch our favorite TV specials, eat goodies, play games and.... for the past 12 years, the month of December also included The Nutcracker Ballet.

One of my friends recently asked me about Ellen and I am thrilled to report that the Nutcracker is still a part of our Holiday month! She's dancing in the Company this year, as well as working at the new Starbucks in town. She's dancing Demi-solo roles in both Snow and Waltz and she has her own Solo that is a brand new dance which is being added this year! She's also dancing my old role, Mrs. Walbridge - Clara's mother - so her Saturday's are very busy.

This year, we will try to be around the theater as much as possible - watching and helping. On the last day of performances, Bill's Dad flies in and he will join us for the last performance and spend the week with us. We'll talk, nap, take drives to see Christmas lights, eat and enjoy the week. We'll also have another special friend joining us again this year on Christmas Day.

So... why do I love Christmas so much??? Because it's family. To me, it's what family is all about, love and acceptance, playing and relaxing in each other's love. To me, it's the perfect representation of God's family and the great gift we have received as we have become a part of His family.

I have always loved this time of year. My heart has always been touched by the story of the Nativity, the lights, the music, the sounds and smells. But most of all, I love the family times!!! And the memories. The memories will last forever!!!

So there you are... my favorite Holiday!

And this year, I am feeling the best I have in over a year. I even skipped and jumped through the Christmas tree farm this year. And yesterday I went swimming! My body still has "Exercise Intolerance" (a proven fact for Chronic Fatigue patients -it's not tired from exercise - the body actually, physically reacts in litteral, negative ways to exercise.) But I don't care. I'm able to exercise again and that's the important thing. And if all goes as I plan it (hee hee) I'll be taking the first 10-15 min of ballet class on the stage during Nutcracker week!

I hope and pray that each of you are able to find this family joy that I experience every year. This feeling of acceptance for who you are, the joy of being with others, and the comfort and stability that comes from tradition. If you don't - I hope I can be the connection to help you find the fulfillment found in God's love and invitation he offers to become a part of His family.

Peace to all,


  1. Melanie, thank you for taking the time to answer this question - how fun! I love hearing about your traditions and memories! We love you and are praying for you! Linda and family

  2. Melanie thank you for sharing your journey! It's so fun to hear others holiday traditions as we are begining to make our own for Aviya. I saw Ellen at Starbucks this week and you've been on my mind since then. Loves!