A Christmas Memory from Janet Hartllee

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Happy Monday sweet friends! I hope you’re doing better than I am at getting ready for Christmas! I’m going to be one of the women in that crazy crowd hoping to find some leftover gifts two days before Christmas! 
Today, I’m delighted to have my sister in Jesus and my sister speaker share a special Christmas story. So grab your coffee (or hot chocolate) and enjoy this encouraging and inspiring Christmas story by my friend and guest, Janet Hartllee…
My Daddy loved to make people laugh.  He felt it was his calling.  Aunt Beat says he was “a born prankster.”  Daddy would wear a red toboggan hat nearly everywhere – no matter what time of year it was.  And with his white hair, grayish white beard, and the twinkle in his eye, he looked just like Old Saint Nick himself.  Of course no padding was necessary.  
Daddy could not walk down the street without some child staring at him.  Daddy would grab his belly and say, “Ho, ho, ho.”  The kids and their parents excitedly waved and laughed.  At Christmas, Daddy would trade in his red hat for a Santa hat.  He would put on a red suit trimmed in white fur, pull up a pair of black shiny boots, and try to buckle his belt.  
Daddy stuffed fruit and goodies into a big, dark green garbage bag.  Then he would toss that bag over his shoulder and head out “ho, ho, hoing” through the neighborhood.  You could hear the laughter when the neighbors opened their doors.  Some even invited him in for hot cocoa.  
One of Daddy’s good friends owned a service station.  They loved to pick at each other.  His friend mentioned that he never got a red wagon for Christmas.  Daddy had an idea.  

He went into the basement and began cutting out sheets of cardboard.  Then he painted on brick, folded the sheets like a chimney, and sat it up in his old black pick up truck.  Our neighbor, Charlie, drove the truck while Daddy stood in the chimney waving at everyone.  

Charlie said they got a lot of interesting looks driving to the service station.  He said, when they arrived, the customers didn’t know what to think.  Daddy stepped out of the chimney and gave a little red wagon to his friend.  Charlie said the man was a total loss for words.  Sometimes it’s the little things in live that can make the biggest difference – like a little baby born long ago who was a king like no other. 
Some people have traditions like having a certain day every year to trim their tree as Christmas music is playing; using special decorations; visiting friends and neighbors; fixing favorite foods.  But what is more important than tradition is remembering the true meaning of Christmas.
Our family would gather in the living room with the beautifully lit Christmas tree.  Before we opened our gifts, Daddy would read the Christmas story from the Bible. Then we’d have prayer thanking God for His gift, the gift of His Son, Jesus, who was without a doubt the greatest gift of all.  
May your Christmas be filled with good food, friends,and fun. Most of all my wish for you is that you truly know the Joy of Christmas. Merry Christmas everyone!
Janet’s Bio:

Christian Speaker/Performer, songwriter, accomplished storyteller
Using humor, story, and song, Janet performs one-woman shows that feature, Mitsy Lou Puppernickel from Frog Holler.  Her unique southern style humor delivers powerful messages! “A Makeover With Tha’ Maker” is her newest show for women’s events and retreats. 

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