Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Visit From An Angel

Wow! I can't believe Christmas is so close. And the end of 2011. Where did the year go? 

I promised that I'd share one of my favorite Christmas memories... 

When I was very young - maybe 4 or 5 - my mother (then a single parent) made these amazing shadow boxes to sell at a local craft festival during the holidays. The festival was very well-known, themed around the Renaissance period during Christmas.

On December 23 of that year, my mom let me come with her to the festival. Actually, I think I came by default - no babysitter is my guess. Regardless, I distinctly remember the different craft booths, the smells of hot chocolate and roasting chestnuts, and the beautiful costumes everyone seemed to wear. My mom and I walked around for a bit before she left me at a child-care center located within the faire. Later that night, a quartet from the Robert Shaw Chorale was singing at the festival. They walked throughout the faire, dressed in historical garb - minstrels singing the most beautiful songs.

One of their first stops was the child-care center. I remember hearing them sing and knowing that a group of angels couldn't possible sound any better. One particular singer - the soprano - stood out from the group. Her voice was more beautiful than anything I had ever heard in my young life. The minstrels finished their songs and moved on to the next booth. I couldn't bear to have them leave, so I snuck out of the center and followed them. Kate, the soprano, talked with me, held my hand and made sure I didn't get lost. I really don't remember them singing, but I do remember Kate trying to help me find my mother's booth.

After some time past - in my 5-year old mind it seemed like it was the whole night - we made our way back to the child-center, unable to find my mother's booth. Mom was waiting for me. And after she was done chastising me for leaving, she thanked Kate. Before Kate left, I pulled off the bracelet I was wearing - a special charm bracelet given to me by my grandmother. The stone of the charms spelled out the word "dear". Kate tried to refuse the present, but I told her that Christmas was about giving and since she had given me the gift of her voice, I simply had to give her the bracelet. Reluctantly, she took my gift and left.

The next day was Christmas Eve. I remember listening to a recording of the Robert Shaw Chorale over and over again. I just knew I could hear Kate's voice in the chorus, sounding every bit as angelic as she did at the festival.

The next morning, Christmas morning, I raced out of bed to see if Santa had come. Mom joined me and I opened my stocking. Tucked at the bottom of the stocking was a little package completely different from the rest. Carefully, I unwrapped the little gift until it lay in my hand - a mosaic pin with a little note.
Thank you for your kindness at the festival. You reminded me just how special Christmas and music are. Love, Kate
I couldn't believe it. How did she manage to get a present into my stocking? Surely she must be an angel.

To this day, I listen carefully anytime Joy to the World by the Robert Shaw Chorale is played, straining to see if I can hear the voice of my angelic Kate.

What special memories do you have about this season?


  1. That's a great story. Nothing specific about Christmas memories comes to mind. Nothing good, anyway.

  2. Lovely!!!! I hope you have a great holiday season.

  3. Sweet, beautiful story. Thank you so much for sharing it!

  4. That is such a beautiful story. I did a Christmas story from my childhood as well over at my blog. Mine dealt with giving and how beautiful it can be as the receiver and the giver.


Thanks for your input!