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Do You Hear What I Hear?

by Sherri Gerek on 12/14/19

The holidays are here!  It’s time to celebrate family traditions, togetherness, and all that is right with the world.  Yessss, there is so much that is right with our world.


As I sit down to write a Christmas column, my thoughts drift miles away to my mother’s house.  In my mind’s eye I see her there in her living room unpacking the Christmas decorations like she has done so many times throughout my lifetime. Her broad smile is evidence of the joyfulness she finds in every holiday season.  If I listen closely…ahhh, yes. There it is!  Her favorite Christmas carol - playing in the background as she sings along. 


Said the night wind to the little lamb,

"Do you see what I see?

Way up in the sky, little lamb,

Do you see what I see?

A star, a star, dancing in the night

With a tail as big as a kite,

With a tail as big as a kite."


When it comes to family traditions, my mother goes all-out decorating her home, preparing special meals, and spreading cheer to everyone around her. She instilled the importance of creating traditions in the lives of my sisters and me, and gave us reasons to look forward to each holiday as an opportunity for sharing, and caring for one another.  In turn, we’ve passed along her traditions to our own families, and isn’t that what it’s all about?  How fortunate I am to be the daughter of a woman who absolutely cherishes the holidays when almost every month of the year gives us a reason to make a treasured memory or two. 


I’ve always loved to hear her singing.


Said the little lamb to the shepherd boy,

"Do you hear what I hear?

Ringing through the sky, shepherd boy,

Do you hear what I hear?

A song, a song high above the trees

With a voice as big as the sea,

With a voice as big as the sea."


I imagine mom is putting away her November decorations now.  Away go the pumpkins of all sizes, gourds, fall tablescapes of dried corn and at least one beautiful centerpiece - the annual horn of plenty overflowing with dried flowers.  Yes, every holiday has its time with my mom, like an old friend it visits awhile, and now Thanksgiving clears the way for Christmas.


Taking a break from my writing, I find myself digging around in the attic for our holiday decorations, and I feel inspired to pick up her favorite song:


Said the shepherd boy to the mighty king,

"Do you know what I know?

In your palace walls, mighty king,

Do you know what I know?

A Child, a Child shivers in the cold--

Let us bring him silver and gold,

Let us bring him silver and gold."


It occurs to me while unpacking boxes…I’ve taken some short cuts on holiday decorating in recent years.  I chose not to unpack all of the décor on those occasions when it was just the two of us.  Too much work I told myself.  And then, I remember her standing there, singing, and I smile. 

Thanks mom for reminding me that every day is a gift, and the gift of another day is reason enough to celebrate the holidays in grand fashion…just like you have always done.


Said the king to the people everywhere,

"Listen to what I say!

Pray for peace, people, everywhere,

Listen to what I say!

The Child, the Child sleeping in the night

He will bring us goodness and light,

He will bring us goodness and light


It’s Christmas time.  Believe in the spirit of this season, and share your light with all of those around you.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!    or    

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