Family: Remember what’s important this Christmas season

My granddaughter is a talented musician who plays two instruments with ease and skill.

Her high school orchestra, who performed at Red Deer College recently, were superb.

True, I am grandma to one of the trombone players in said orchestra, and, as such, I realize I need to exercise the choice to detach myself from the performance and not go on and on about it and bore people to tears.

Even though I want to.

But, other people who attended, excluding the grandparents from the other side who are also slightly biased, did seem suitably impressed.

I know they were, because later, I sidled up to them and asked them, slyly, like I really had no interest in their answer.

“So, what did you think of that orchestra,” I said, off-handedly, acting very cool and detached.

“They were amazing,” they all said. True, they did not exactly use those words, but you get the idea.

The kids rocked!.

I have always believed that music can soften the edges of the harshest day. I have always believed that music can elevate people to a different level where things seem a little easier and brighter, somehow.

And, luckily for me, my granddaughter, bless her heart, thinks that way too.

It seems to be a generational thing!

In my mind, I elevate my granddaughter to great musical heights and see her performing in the future in front of huge crowds somewhere where there are lots of bright lights and a huge stage.

But, she served me up a dose of reality and interrupted my fantasy the other night when she confessed to me, in a rare moment of shared secrets, that her favorite Christmas song was Bob and Doug McKenzie’s version of The Twelve Days of Christmas.

The first line of that song, for crying out loud, is, on the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a beer …. in a tree!!

My goodness!

In spite of myself, her musical choice made me laugh and somehow I have to say it must be wonderful to be sixteen and for just a fleeting moment in time toss away all the worries, responsibilities and cares of the world and just be frivolous and silly.

And just be happy for no other reason, that just because.

Christmas can be a tough season.

There is no doubt about it.

There are those of us who get all bogged down with worry because we have to shop and decorate and bake and host parties and have it all done before Dec. 25.


How lucky we really are.

For so many, the holiday season is not a time of good cheer, but a time of sadness and hardship and, in so many ways, all the talk about cheer and good will seems nothing more than a cruel mockery.

Perhaps, that is why it is so incredibly important to remember what it is important to forget.

It’s important to forget there is too much to do and not enough time.

It’s important to forget that Christmas is about finding the perfect gift.

It’s important to forget that being an adult is all about taking life seriously and making to do lists.

It’s important to forget past grievances and hurts and just keep on, keeping on, preferably with a smile.

People seem to like smiles and I’ve heard they are contagious, like moods.

For me, Christmas is easy, although, of course, like everyone, there is always a twinge of sadness for loved ones lost, for memories that can’t be relived and for what used to be.

But still, I cannot believe how each and every Christmas seems to bring with it so many unwrapped presents and, even though we still have tons of time until the big day arrives (okay, so not that much time), already its been so good.

I’ve had a limo ride, for goodness sake. Can you even believe it?

Three December birthdays and one great, big party topped off by a limousine ride for all 14 family members.

That’s what happens when you have adult children. They can be simply full of surprises.

“Why is that limo parked at your house, fancy pants”? my neighbor texted me.

“Just lucky,” I said, “just very, very lucky.”

And so we sped along listening to The Twelve Days of Christmas by Bob and Doug McKenzie and it was good.

Very, very good!

Treena Mielke is the editor of the Rimbey Review. She lives in Sylvan Lake with her family.

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