Many, many years ago my sister had a really rough year. So I decided that year that she should have a little present each evening to open up, starting December 1 and ending on Christmas Eve.
She was my best friend and when she passed away three years ago this summer, she not only took a gazillion secrets with her but also part of my heart. I don’t know what's going on in her world, what with her doing her eternity thing without me but it’s been a rough three years for me doing without her. A couple of days ago my sweet brother-in-law came bringing in a stack of notes and laughing when he handed them to me.
She’d kept all the notes I’d put with those little presents almost thirty years ago and he was bringing them back to me. I think she was saying that no matter how much time or distance separates us that we’ll always be those crazy Gray girls from Tishomingo, Oklahoma that were not only sisters but best friends.
So for the next few weeks, I thought I might share some of the notes with y’all.
Number One (written on a large scrap I tore from a brown paper bag out of her pantry):
On the first day of Christmas my sister gave to me a partridge in a pear tree. (I bet you've got that song stuck in your head now, right)
Well, I considered a partridge in a pear tree however—since I’m not noted for ambition above and beyond the call of duty, I just looked at the pear tree over in the neighbor’s yard and did not actually commence to dig it up and put it in this box so scratch the pear tree.
Besides do you know how much trouble a pear tree is? You gotta water it, gotta rake dead leaves, gotta pick the pears, gotta make jars and jars of pear marmalade, then you gotta eat it all because we’d think of all those starvin’ babies in other countries and feel guilty if we wasted food. Then our clothes wouldn’t fit and we’d have to go shopping for bigger ones, so you see the pear tree idea wasn’t so whoopee!
Now about that partridge. It does not say porridge but partridge and that’s a B-I-R-D, not something that you eat with milk and sugar in it. You know that you have a personality conflict with anything that flies or has feathers. Besides if you loved them as much as you love hot biscuits drippin’ with butter—well, darlin’ little sister, think about the flyin, the flappin’ of the little wings and the floppin’ of little body parts as they do their air aerobics in your living room. Then when they get tired, they will light in that kinky hair-do that you have. You’d have a cardiac arrest and you don't even have all your Christmas presents bought.
And the droppin’s—that is droppin’s not drippin’s, as in bacon grease seasoning for your red beans. Droppin’s are rather nasty so no partridge in a pear tree to start of the season. Instead on the first day of Christmas my sister gave to me one little Chris Mouse to hang upon the Christmas tree, one cup of roasted pecans, several kinds of cheese and a little bitty beef log on a red shiny plate.
Well, it’s better than a partridge in a pear tree. Enjoy it tonight while you watch your first Christmas movie of the season and remember that I love you.