Journal Week 1: A Very, Very White Christmas

I've struggled to figure out what to do with Fridays this year. I could just blog regularly on Fridays, and drop the year-long themed posts. But you have to produce a lot of material if you're blogging Monday through Friday every week. So it's nice to have something at the end of the week that is short and that you don't have to think a ton about to produce.

Lacking any brilliant or original idea, I'm just going to make Fridays a diary/journal entry. Sort of like what I did last year with "Prison Diary," but without that narrow scope. I'm going to use Fridays to share life, musings, reflections, and random stuff that is more personal and idiosyncratic. And I hope to continue to share updates from the prison.

So let's start.

I hope you're having a very blessed and merry Christmas. I say "having" rather than "had" because we all know it's still Christmas, right? There are Twelve Days of Christmas. That means real Christians still have their Christmas trees up. The Beck Christmas trees won't come down until after Epiphany. Liturgically, we're pretty hardcore about Christmas.

This year the Becks had a very, very white Christmas.

We always make the drive up to see my family in Erie, Pennsylvania. I start daily checking my weather app after Thanksgiving to track Erie weather, monitoring our chances of getting a white Christmas. Living in Texas I miss seeing snow.

Well, this year we got a white Christmas in the form of record snowfall. Thirty-four inches of snow fell on Christmas day. From Christmas Eve until the day we left, over 65 inches of snow had fallen. It was crazy!

And it came with a wonderful side benefit. The snow kept us inside. Instead of running around shopping or going to movies, the snow kept us in the house. Christmas this year was filled with slow, sleepy days simply being with family.

I read a biography of Thomas Aquinas and helped Dad shovel snow.

And on Christmas morning, with our two teenage boys sleeping in, I pulled out my guitar and Jana and I sang Christmas carols and gospel hymns for Mom and Dad.

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