Imagine a brother and sister in law who cut down a tree from their own land, drove it 30 miles and plunked it in your yard with a "Ho Ho Ho~MEERRRRYYY Christmas!!"
Imagine stringing the tree with colored lights just to restring it with white lights because...there is something so pure about lights like stars. Or THE star. A living room filled up with twinkling declarations of His coming.
Imagine the cd player not working properly, so Papa singing out Christmas carols instead. Imagine little voices and BIG voices joining in whenever they knew the words (and even when they didn't.)
Imagine cups of cold, homemade eggnog courtesy of the chickens that morning with freshly whipped cream and a sprinkling of nutmeg.
Imagine whipped cream lips.
Imagine dancing with angels.
Imagine eating a very-favorite meal (sausage gravy~the children's favorite) over freshly toasted, homemade cracked wheat bread. Using wheat you cracked yourself.
Imagine eating said meal in the LIVING room (never done that before!) all around the Christmas tree.
Imagine "You a good Mama and a weally good cooker." coming from a little boychild right into your heart.
Imagine gazing at your love, in candlelight, across the room-and still seeing the twinkles in his eyes.
Imagine snowflakes falling on your tree as big as your head.
Imagine laying out the tree skirt and fondly recollecting the determination to finish making it the day before Christmas, that first Newman Christmas, yearning to have that skirt grace all of our Christmases in the future. Pining for a tradition to begin.
Imagine laying it out and thanking God that it has seen 7 Christmases, all very different from one another but all incredibly dear.
Imagine strands of popcorn and cranberries, as elegant as pearls and rubies, draped across the boughs.
Imagine so many lights it seems to be daylight even in the black darkness of midnight.
Imagine a tree so tall the angel has no room for a Halo.
Imagine a tree nearly 8 feet wide at the base, swallowing up a once-spacious living room and radiating because of it.
Imagine the stories told as old ornaments are carefully unwrapped. One from my 1st grade teacher. 1st Christmas feet prints from all my babies. A "First Christmas Together" locket ornament that STILL, seven years later, holds the generic photos of strangers.
Imagine the awe of it all.