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Seasons Greetings

Days of Destiny.

As the Holiday Season approaches, most of us, even the biggest Bah Humbug, Grinch will find ourselves thinking about family, friends, and Christmases past. My earliest Christmas memories are those spent with my maternal grandparents in Ruleville, Mississippi. World War II was still raging across Europe, and my Dad was in the thick of it with Patton’s Third Army.

I can remember listening to H.V. Kaltenborn, who reported the war news on NBC. I also remember the Christmas 1944 edition of the “Your Hit Parade,” with Frank Sinatra singing White Christmas. We lived in an apartment attached to my grandfather’s ice plant, and my grandmother decorated with those fold out paper bells of red and green, and the tree had those sharp nosed bulbs that when one went out, the whole string went out.

The war ended in 1945, and Dad stayed in the Army Air Corp, and we never saw a Christmas in the same place twice. I can remember a freezing cold Christmas at Lowry Air Force base in Denver, Colorado, and a hot humid one in the Panama Canal Zone. In 1950, Dad got out and we settled in Cleveland, Mississippi, and I have many wonderful Christmas memories from those years.

This Christmas is reminding me of old friends, some still with us and some not, and after 76 Christmases, the circle grows smaller each year. Tonight I’m thinking about my many blessings, and trying to have an attitude of gratitude—as we say in AA. Tonight, I’m grateful for:

Clista, and our life together. We are truly blessed.

Our families, who tonight are all safe and in good health. We never know what tomorrow may bring, but tonight, all is well and not a creature is ailing, not even a mouse.

Our friends, who are scattered all over the world. Tonight you are in our hearts and prayers.

I am particularly grateful for the opportunity afforded me by As I like it, and Porch Scene as venues to share my love of the written word with many of you. Your readership is much appreciated.

Several of my close friends are recovering from serious illnesses. I admire each of you and the courage you are displaying. The operative word here is “recovering.”

I hope each and every one of you are with friends and family tonight, and I leave you with this familiar phrase:

MERRY CHISTRMAS TO ALL AND TO ALL A GOODNIGHT!

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21 replies »

  1. Merry Christmas, Tom. I have enjoyed reading your passages this past year. I am thankful for our friendship and appreciative of the aid you have rendered me over the years.

    Warmest Regards,

    Lane

    B. Lane Carrick

    100 Houston Street

    Mobile, AL 36606

    (901) 237-8441

  2. Thanks Tom– I enjoyed that and count you as one of a dwindling group for whom I give a shit–even if you didn’t call me after the Egg Bowl! We are in Driggs ID for Christmas with Mac and his wife Jimena who have bought a vacation home here in the ski area. No question that we will have a White Christmax– it’s snowed for the last six Days! Merry Christmas to you and Clista and all Lawrence’s everywhere.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  3. Wow ! Your Dad was in Patton’s 3rd Army.  I have read a lot of Patton books, the most recent being Bill O’Reilly’s ” Killing Patton “. I thought it was an excellent summation of the War’s end and the Battle of the Bulge. Like you I’m blessed beyond measure at my rapidly advancing age. May you have a joyous Christmas and a Great New Year. JIM III John 2

    • Dad was Command Sgt. Major for the 19th tactical Air Force. They were Patton’s sir support. The 19th was commanded by Maj. General Otto P. Weyland. Dad landed in Africa during operation Torch, participated in the invasion of Sicily and prior to D Day he was the chief administrator for the 19th’s mission of escorting our bombers deep into Germany. He was with Patton’s headquarters during the break out from Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded 25 decorations, 4 four valor and 21 I was there medals. He stayed in and served with Weyland until 1949. Weyland retired as an Air Force four star.

  4. Hello Tom, and thank you for the thoughtful Christmas greeting.

    Times like this make me appreciate how fortunate I was to move to Jackson on the first day of July, 1951, and become part of our cohort.

    At this evening’s Christmas Eve service, I have the role of a Roman tax collector, not mentioned by name in Luke’s parable, but there by implication. After complaining about his job he whines, “I am just doing a day’s work for a day’s pay,” and sings, “Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child.”

    Believe me, I do not feel anything like a “Motherless Child.”

    Too many good friends, too many good memories.

    Our church group learned a new song this year that resonates with me. You can hear a professional performance at

    [audio src="http://www.lorenz.com/Med/Sample/10_4093L.mp3" /]

    May God grant us peace.

    Regards,

    Bill Howard Nellysford VA, a Long Way from Jackson

    >

  5. Tom, hope y’all had a wonderful Christmas. Love reading your thoughts. This message was especially poignant. Please keep ’em coming. All the best for 2016.
    Rick

  6. Hi Tommy — your words always touch me; you are a truly gifted writer — all the more so because of the sincerity of your thoughts on paper. This post — “Seasons Greetings” — is particularly meaningful. May 2016 be the best for you and Clista — who, by the way, holds a special place in the friendship area of my heart. Ida

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