December 20th, 2009 Opener…

Well, Christmas has come and gone once again, and – once again – we received many an inquiry as to how we pulled off the 3 Campus / 4 Stage “12 Days of Christmas” Opener.

Missed it? Check it out here: December 20 Opener


My Grandma, singin’ her way to Heaven

My Grandma, Wilma Pierce, is well into her 80’s, but has sadly suffered significant memory loss and severe dementia (kind of like Alzheimer’s) for the better part of the last decade. The last few years have been especially bad.

She can barely recognize her 3 children, but not their spouses, even though they’ve been part of her family for more than 30 years. She does not remember her grandchildren, let alone their spouses or children.

Well, small miracles still do happen.

This Christmas, while surrounded by her family (and their families), she had an awakening. She was the life of the party, telling jokes and stories, lighting up the room.

It was only for a few, short hours. After dinner she quietly regressed into her now normal state of dementia.

But during that afternoon, my sister Ashley had the camera rolling at just the right moment, and captured the sweet, tender essence of our Grandma:

When the gates swing wide on the other side
Just beyond the sunset sea
There’ll be room to spare as we enter there
There’ll be room for you and room for me

For the gates are wide on the other side
Where the fairest flowers bloom
On the right hand and on the left hand
Fifty miles of elbow room

Grandma – I’m afraid you won’t have that much elbow room when you soon reach Heaven. People will want to be close to you.

What song will YOU be singing in your Golden Years?

Starbucks – kosher Christmas coffee

So we were in a Starbucks in an area of town with a high Jewish population. That obviously didn’t register until AFTER I made this discovery:

The store was decorated in its December usual (blatant) CHRISTmas colors, decorations, and verbage. Chistmas this, christmas that, Advent calendars, and, of course, the delectable Christmas Blend.

KUDOS to St. Arbucks (Ragamuffin‘s term – I just stole it ;). But then, what did we see? HOLIDAY BLEND!! Oooooh – was this something wonderful and new?holiday-blend.jpg

“No,” said the barista. “It’s the exact same as Christmas blend.” That was it – end of explanation. We were puzzled, until we studied the packaging. Blue. Silver. Hmmmmm.We looked around. Turns out Starbucks also sells Chhannnnukkaaahhhhh (sp?) merchandise as well! Menorahs, dradels, all the kosher trimmings.

So we thought about it, discussed it, and I pondered it. And my final thought is CONGRATULATIONS STARBUCKS! Thank you for not selling out to one, generic, “Holiday” or “Seasons'” blend, but for keeping Christ and his birth in your coffee.

Well, not IN your coffee, but you get the point.  Do YOU like Christmas Blend?