Friday, December 11, 2015

Lesson 393: Christmas Stories

It's a December Friday night.
Grab your blankey and a cocktail.
It's time to curl up for your weekend story.
This week Eloise is telling Christmas stories!

Nature tells the best of stories, 
doesn't she?

My crew painted the town of North East, PA last weekend.
Just to clarify for my out of town Readers,
the town of North East (two words)
is in northwestern (one word) Pennsylvania.

This mural is painted on the side of a building along their town square.
The quaint little Lake Erie town,
home to my hubby and all of my out-laws,
has a grape vineyard at every mile

and a church to match every drinking establishment.

The town of North East decorates their lamp posts up good and proper for the holiday.

and issues free parking for Sugar Plumb weekend,
to encourage shopping at the local businesses.

Christmas trees can be found tied to the *roofs of cars.
*Grammar Lesson of the week:  the accepted plural of roof is roofs.
Hoof is hooves, by the way.
Don't you just love the English language?

Live reindeer can be petted in Gibson Park.

Prancer nibbled on wild daisies......
(record scratch)
yes--the Erie December has been unusually warm.

The town issued a walking map of all the local businesses,
and elves like this one were hidden in every store.
If you entered the shop and found the elf,
you received a card punch.
Collect 6 punches and you could turn in your map for a chance at a grand prize.
I'm still waiting for my call.

Santa was there!
Natalie wants presents.
Ryan wants a trumpet.
Sam wants everything in the universe.
Ellen was looking a jewelry......
so Santa, bring her a bracelet.

Horse drawn carriage rides around the town were FREE.

Shooter the Erie Otter rode on our wagon!

Eloise's favorite part of Sugar Plum weekend is getting to visit North East's 
Gibson Park nativity.  

It's a simple little structure 
that has been a Christmas landmark in the town for over 50 years.

I go every year just so I can say I photographed Jesus.

The day after Eloise visited, 
Baby Jesus was stolen!
It wasn't the first time--Jesus has been swiped before--
lost and found every time.

I thought about sending the NEPD my photos so they could use them to reconstruct the crime scene.
After a second thought, I thought I'd incriminate myself somehow,
so I didn't.

I was happy to hear that by Tuesday, Jesus had been found!
From the NEPD facebook page:

North East Police Department The baby Jesus figurine was recovered from a residence on East Ave in the City of Erie. Theft related charges are pending against a couple of Penn State Behrend students.

This is going to appear on my Year in Review Blog
as one of my favorite photos of 2015.

I'm always interested that Mary's robes are always blue,
and Joseph's are always pink.
Biblical historians, please weigh in.
I want to know the scoop.

Here is the Nativity Set that once belonged to my hubby's parents.
You can drive by and see it beneath my lamp post 
at The Lamp Post.
They have the same colored robes.
There must be a reason.

In this close up of Mary's blue robe, 
I spied my favorite animal, 
hanging out in the corner of the stable.

It's the humble donkey!

Eloise LOVES donkeys!

I love donkeys so much 
that I've been tirelessly trying to convince my neighbors to buy one for their barn.

They have horses!
What's one more!

I think Sunny Acres could support a donkey.
Plus, Eloise would be down every day to visit it.
 brush it
and feed it
and hug it
and kiss it 
and love it all over.


I'm reading a book right now about a donkey named Flash.
It's a true story of a donkey that showed up one night to a family down on their luck.
It's at Sam's Club for $10 and a great, easy,

Laura and Chris--
when you adopt that super old and slow donkey for me,
name him Flash, OK?
I'll bring down the daisy for him to chew on.

Here are some other of Eloise's recommended Christmastime reads:

This is a good one full of the traditional stories,
all short ones if you don't have time to put into a thick book.
My parents got me this one almost 20 years ago. 
It has Virginia's letter to the New York Sun in it.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.
The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see.

The "Yes Virginia" story ... my favorite Christmas Thing.  I read this every year and believe more and more in Santa each year I grow older.  "Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding."  What a relief to know that Santa lives! Merry Christmas! ~ Ashley:

Here's my all-time favorite--
it's a Lamp Post Must Read every year.

If you've never met the Herdmans,
crack the cover and prepare to laugh until you cry.

For those of you who need a quicker read--
don't miss this issue of Reader's Digest.
It is filled with stories that will warm your heart.

If you really hate reading like some Lamp Post dwellers 
who shall remain unnamed, 
you can always come over and color in Ellen's Amish Christmas coloring book.
I encourage her to color (since she doesn't like to read).
Her father helps her (since he doesn't like to read either).
There are lots of empty pages though.
The Amish creep Ellen out, just like they do her Momma.
I'm going to hell in a buggy for saying that,
but Eloise cannot tell a lie at Christmastime.

Speaking of honesty,
here's a work from one of Eloise's favorite people.

Good news was shared this week about Jimmy Carter's cancer.
It has disappeared from the 91 year old, former President's brain.

Access to specialized treatment?
All things combined?
No matter the reason,
I'm thankful this great Humanitarian gets a little more time on this planet.
This is the final paragraph from his very
brief speech when he accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.

My favorite of all stories, though, is this one.
I love it so much I have an extra copy ready to loan if any of you Readers want to sign it out.
The best part of the Lamp Post Lending Library is there are no due dates.
Keep it forever if you want to.

What better way to musically punctuate this night than to share 
the Greatest Story Ever Told
sung by
the Greatest Singer Ever to Sing!

Please watch the video of the Christmas story,
with scenes from The Nativity Story and Passion of the Christ,
set to Tim McGraw's Mary and Joseph song.

Listen for the lyric just before the 3 minute mark--
In a barn she gave birth
to the King of Kings
the Lord of Earth
Just a little bitty thing sleeping on the hay.
It makes me weepy.

Don't miss this one.  
It's important.
And don't roll your eyes over Tim McGraw.
It's Christmas.


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