Heart Choices: Remembering at Christmas -->

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Remembering at Christmas

I am participating in a special time of remembering at Christmas. Kelly of The Beauty of Sufficient Grace is hosting and I am so glad I "stumbled" (yeah, right) upon her beautiful blog.

The purpose of a time of remembering at Christmas is for those who have lost loved ones. Christmas should be a time of joy and thanksgiving for the birth of our Savior; Jesus. But for many it can also be a time of sadness as they miss loved ones who have died. Many of the women who participated have lost children and babies.

I'm thinking of my mom who died almost five years ago. She was a beautiful woman both inside and out. She had a wonderful sense of humor and always had a joke to share. She loved life and people.

My mom had lots of friends because ...she was a good friend.

She kept copious notes on her calendar including dates of other's loved ones who had died. She would often send a note to a friend who had lost someone special to let them know she remembered and wanted them to know she was thinking of them. My mom loved Christmas! We always celebrated on Christmas Eve in the traditional Norwegian way. And everyone got dressed up for the event.

The Christmas tree was always decorated with little Norwegian flags to remember my family's home land. And my mom always had my dad read from the Bible before we ate our special Christmas dinner. He read of the Savior's birth, just like my Grandpa used to do each year.

This photo is one I posted last year but it's such a wonderful Christmas memory. I think it was 1969. Don't laugh at my short dress and ribbon choker. Does anyone remember them?

Check out my mom's hairstyle. Years ago, she used to get her hair done every week where they would wash and set and then use lots of hair spray. When she and my dad left New York and moved to Florida, she gave up on that habit. LOL.

I'm just so thankful that my mom loved Jesus. I know that she's in heaven and out of the physical pain she suffered in her last years on this earth. It's such a comfort to think of her dancing and laughing with Jesus. And she's probably catching up with loved ones who've gone on before her.

Thank you Kelly for providing this opportunity to remember my mom at Christmas. If you would like to participate, it's not too late to link up at The Beauty of Sufficient Grace.

Debbie Petras
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  1. What a beautiful woman your mom was, and my goodness you look just like her. Soo many wonderful memories. I too sometimes sit and down and sift through my memories of Christmas past. Sometimes traveling all the way back to when I was a young girl. I remember the short dresses (empire style)and the choker necklaces for sure. haha Whatever were we thinking wearing our skirts soo short? lol And sometimes to Christmas's with my own young family and children. When I was pulling out my decorations this week I came across a couple of little things I have that I remember Melody being soo excited about when she was little. The little things she said etched forever in my memory. I think this year when I pack them up I am going to give them to her to have in her own home. Life travels on and time goes by and our memories are such a blessing given to us by our loving Father to thumb through when time allows. I do pray that those who are missing loved ones this season will be comforted by our God who so loves and cares for us. Have a great day Debbie and thanks for sharing your wonderful memories of your precious mother.



  2. Oh I forgot, how exciting to meet Charlotte!! How fun for you. How I would love to meet some of my blogland friends...

  3. Debbie, such beautiful pics and memories. Thank you for sharing with us! I loved the pic of your mom & dad together.

  4. Hey precious, thank you for sharing another beautiful part of yourself with us today. I love you.

  5. What a beautiful tribute to your Mom!

    Thank you for sharing another sweet memory of her and how she effected your life so deeply!

    You are very blessed to have spent such precious times with her!

    She was very beautiful! Apple doesn't fall far from the tree - you are beautiful too!!!

    Love you,

  6. Debbie, your post really touched my heart today. I lost my mom over 20 years ago, on December 9, 1983. I still miss her so much...her laughter, her wise counsel...so many memories, they flood my mind continually. I am amazed at the gift of memory that God has created in us...what a wonder it is. I think of Alzeimers and how it steals this blessed joy.

    Your mom was, as you said, beautiful inside and out,and she's left her beautiful spirit here on earth for you to keep in your heart. She gave much to her family, and I believe it is because she had much...she was filled to the brim with goodness as a result of her relationship with God. To have such wonderful photos of her, and your dad and grandparents, is a treasure. I don't have photos like that, but what I do have, I cherish. Knowing that our moms are with the Lord brings such joy and comfort, but they are still so very missed.

    Yes, I wore those short skirts and neck bands, too! Looking back, I can only ask "what were we thinking?" LOL! Actually, I guess they were pretty cute, but I wouldn't want to see them return for a second time around!

    Have a wonderful Sunday, Debbie...may God bless you for all that you do for others.

    Love and hugs,

  7. What fun. Thank you for sharing your mother as well as your memories. My own mother's been gone for many years now, and I still miss her. Like you, I look forward to the day when I'll see her again.


  8. Debbie,
    I can see God's love radiating on your Mom's face in the pictures. She was truly beautiful inside and out.

    Thanks for sharing her with us. I hope to be more like her, a good friend.


  9. Debbie,
    Thanks for sharing the beauty and love of your mom with us. She sounds like she was a wonderful mother and friend.

    And I loved my ribbon choker. Wish I still had it. :-)

    Blessings to you, friend,

  10. I think that is so wonderful your mom kept dates by her calendar, especially dates to remember loved ones. I know it prolly meant a lot for people to receive a card or note from her saying that she was thinking of them.

  11. Debbie:
    Those mothers of ours! This was so close to home, with those Norwegian influences we grew up with! She was so beautiful and she would be so proud of her daughter!
    Love you,

  12. Your mom is so elegant Debbie. What a beautiful family you have. I love the ribbon choker and yes I do remember them. I even had a scoop neck knit shirt that had a built-in choker that buttoned on the side.

    Love you!

  13. Debbie our skirts were way short! My girls rib me about that, too. I'm all "choked" up reading this. Your Mom took such good care of her appearance just like you. You must introduce me to her when we're in Heaven.

  14. Debbie,

    I loved this post! Your Mom was certainly a beautiful woman inside and out and instilled the love of the Lord in you...what a tremendous gift!

    I remember the short dresses and choker necklaces and indeed think they are coming back in style! lol

    Love you, my friend.

  15. Your mother is beautiful, and that is such a cute picture of you. We do miss our mothers so, especially at Christmas. I have an award for you at my blog.

  16. Oh Debbie...your mom is so beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing this post about her. I love the pictures...you are so cute! I am missing my mom, too...she loved Christmas. And, she always made it special. I'm not sure if your mom liked tea, but I can see our moms sharing a cup of tea in heaven and talking about their Christmas memories. I'm so grateful for the hope we have in Jesus...that we will see those we love again. My heart just aches to see her and hear her voice. Some sweet day...

    Thank you. You have really blessed me with this post.

    Praying that you will be blessed and filled with hope and peace as you remember your mom and make more memories with your family this Christmas and in the coming year...May the Lord shower you with His love and grace...


  17. Thanks for sharing your beautiful mom, love you.

  18. What a wonderful tribute to your mom. Be blessed with the memories of her.

  19. This is a beautiful tribute to your mom! She was a beautiful woman and yes, you look like her. My mother loved Christmas and both of our birthdays in Dec made celebrating so fun! I remember the days of a hair style and lots of hair spray...and wrapping one's head at night so as not to disturb it. :-) Can't believe we did that but we did! Thanks for sharing ~

  20. Always love the stories about your mom. As you must remember, it was ten years ago this month that we lost our Jason. There is always a tender spot in our hearts as we think of him at this time of year. But praise God, we know we will see him again someday, and that makes it all bareable.

  21. Oh - I LOVE these pictures!!! And your mom's big hair!!!!!!

    My dad died 13 years ago this Christmas. Remembering is a special balm for the soul during this season.

    Thanks for sharing your mom with us.


  22. Hi, I am just coming over to your blog for the first time from walking with you. Thank you for sharing your special Christmas memories of your mom, and the awesome family photograph! I'm so glad you are blessed with knowing she is in heaven with Jesus, and will be celebrating Christmas with Him this year!

  23. Thank you for sharing this story, Debbie. I love it when people celebrate Christmas as a family, complete with a family picture with the tree, and a formal dinner where you dress up.

    I appreciate your sharing your warm memories.

    May you be warmed and comforted by such memories this Christmas.

    I know how it feels to miss a loved one at Christmas. This is my second Christmas without my husband. He went home to heaven a little over a year ago. Well, he and your mom have surely met...


  24. We like to read the nativity too at christmas.

  25. Hi Debbie...You won the Merry Christmas from Heaven ornament on the Walking With You giveaway. Please email the address you would like me to ship it to.



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