Christmas Through the Eyes of a Child

With little ones, everything old is new again. Emily Frances is enjoying her third Christmas (her second out in the world), and I am enjoying it right along with her. Every morning she has rituals, and because our Christmas decorations are up, the rituals have changed. Every day, after grabbing her beloved Pooh in her crib, getting a dry diaper and some milk, we head down the stairs.  Each morning she bursts out with one of her new words as we near the bottom of the stairs.

“TEE, TEE!” she shouts in glee. She means tree, of course. We go and turn the lights on, and she stands back in admiration speaking long strings of incomprehensible Emmy words that express her delight. She is not a physically aggressive child. She likes to reach out and touch the ornaments with the tips of her fingers, but doesn’t take them off. Her favorites are the red cardinal tucked in the branches, a small bear with a red hat that she mistakenly identifies as “Pooh”, and she likes the little church with snow that sparkles on its roof.

After admiring the tree, we go to look at the manger scene for a while. She points to the infant Jesus in the manger and says, “Baby!”  We talk about the Baby Jesus then and admire the angel on the roof of the stable.  There is a rose in its last stages of beauty that sits in a vase near the manger scene. Last night, I was holding her in my arms looking at the lighted manger scene when she pointed to the red rose and said, “Fow-ver.” It was the first time she had attempted the word flower. Again this morning she said it several times, so it looks like she has a new word added to her vocabulary.

One of the sweetest things is when a baby starts to sing. At this age, they mimic everything, and I sing a lot both in the car and around the house, so Emily has been attempting to sing also. I had “Silent Night” playing in the car today and I heard this small voice in the back seat making some sounds that were clearly imitating what she heard. What fun to teach her all the little songs toddlers and preschoolers learn. I started with this one that I taught to all my babies:

God made me,

God made me,

In my Bible book it says that God made me.

Then you change it to God helps me, and God loves me. I have a tape recording of baby Charlie (now 23), who was about two at the time, attempting this song. It doesn’t get sweeter than that.

Before Emily, I had moved so far from these simple things. I sometimes look back before the baby and think how lonely I must have been all day not having her. My radio work and former news and commentary blogging provided no respite from the spiritual and cultural wars in our world. Children bring you back to what really matters in your life. Somebody small needs you right this minute, and they need to know that everything is OK. That’s the blessing of little ones. They take you out of yourself, and they constantly remind you of the need to go before the Throne of Grace for help in doing the job of mother.

Every good and every perfect gift comes down from the Father of Lights, Scripture says. The ultimate gift is the gift of God’s Son. The wide-eyed wonder of a baby at Christmas is a lesson in the wonder we should feel every day of our lives. That God would love us enough in our wretched sins to send His only Son to this earth to die on our behalf should amaze us. What wondrous love that was and is.

In closing this post, I will share a recording from a long time ago. It was made for my Grandma who lived up in the north woods. She has spent Christmas with Jesus for 13 years now. We weren’t able to be with her that year so we sent a recording of all of us. My sister and brother-in-law and my Dad and Mom and Charlie, 4  and Sammy, 3, sang while I played the keyboard. It isn’t great music in terms of our raggedy voices, but it’s about the love of our Savior who was born 2000 years ago. I love this recording because you can hear the little ones’ voices in there (they were standing on a box by the microphone.) They wished Grandma a special Merry Christmas at the end. The last voice is Sammy. He’s getting married on the 18th.  A special Merry Christmas to you, Sammy, we love you and Laura. And Merry Christmas to all of you!

10 thoughts on “Christmas Through the Eyes of a Child

  1. Lorrie says:

    What a sweet post! I can’t listen to the recording at the moment – the audio isn’t working on our main computer, but hope to hear it later from my laptop. I want to see more Emmy pictures!

  2. Becky says:

    Ingrid,

    I don’t know your Grandma’s response upon receiving, opening and listening, but I don’t doubt this was the best Christmas present received.

    Thanks for sharing and what a neat gift idea for family far away.

  3. paulacummings says:

    I’m so glad you have Emily, people who make such great mothers and have stellar extended families -such as yours, need to have children. Enjoy every minute with her, really enjoy it! You know full well how fast it goes.

  4. christina says:

    Ingrid, Malachi loves that song! He has been learning it in his Sunday school class and he starting to have it memorized! How sweet.

    I love the baby talk! Cant wait until they start to ask questions! 🙂 Thanks for sharing with us.

  5. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    Becky, my Grandma, of course, loved it. My sister and brother in law sang some other songs on there and she said she nearly wore it out. I think those are the best gifts of all! Christina, Charlie and Sammy had their WeeSing Bible Songs cassette years ago and their tape player they carried around the house. I saved the tape in my cedar chest so then Will and Mary played it in their children’s cassette player. Now, 10 years after that, I have had to buy a WeeSing Bible Songs CD because cassette players don’t exist for children anymore! Next, I guess they’ll give children mp3 players. Here’s one of the songs. http://www.weesing.com/sound/p15t16.wax I also like the Camp Fire songs one. After hearing those songs a gazillion times over the years, I know them all by heart, including which ones come next. “The more we get together, together, together, the more we get together, the happier we’ll be….” 🙂

  6. christina says:

    Cute song Ingrid. I have a cd of songs from when I was a little girl. It had the song The More We Get Together on there as well. I liked that song a lot. It was on a Raffi cd. There were a couple that werent so good so we skip over them.

    Elizabeth saw a VHS the other day and she looked very perplexed. Times change so fast.

  7. Lisa K says:

    What a great Christmas post! This is the true spirit of Christmas – the simple song with the little ones wishing Grandma a Merry Christmas, and Emmy so excited to see the tree! I cherish my few precious old cassette tapes of my boys when they were tiny singing simple Bible school songs and ABC’s!

  8. Rebecca says:

    Oh Ingrid your family singing was so sweet. It takes me straight back to the my childhood when my sisters and I would go caroling around our little neighborhood just for the joy of it. Some of our neighbors would make requests and another would bring a plate of cookies out for us to sample. Such wonderful memories!

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