Well fifty years later we have been blessed with four children, nine grandchildren, and five great grandchildren.
God has blessed us with Cheryl serving her first year as a state legislator in the assembly while logging many miles back and forth to Sacramento, and one trip taking her to Armenia.
Justin, one of our grandsons, has successfully been my caregiver during the year and we have learned a lot about each other. We are looking forward to doing it again next year as Cheryl starts her second year.
Our children have taken over the family business Brown Publishing Company and the Black Voice Newspaper, the non-profit organization Black Voice Foundation Inc., and re-launched our statewide organization California Black Media from Sacramento.
I also had a trip back to Trenton, North Carolina to the Jonas and Mary Brown (my father’s parents) 40th family reunion. It was Justin’s first time where he saw over a hundred cousins he had never met. This of course stirred in me the desire to start reviewing all of our family pictures that we have taken over the past fifty plus years and get to family members while we can remember some faces and put names to them.
This has sparked a family conversation with our younger generation about our heritage.
But as it gets closer to Christmas, I drift back to childhood and it being cold but mama cooking those cakes and pies with the smell floating throughout the house waiting for Santa to come. I think of going into the woods by our house and cutting the tree then decorating it with holly we also got in the woods. I remember the plays at school and the programs at church where every child had a part to play in telling the story of our savior. However nothing could or would take the joy away of waking up early on Christmas morning to presents and candy with fruit all neatly placed so you could tell who got what.
Neatly placing the presents for the kids was also the tradition Cheryl and I established for our kids, with Cheryl adding baking pumpkin bread to our list of holiday traditions. Through the years we have gone from lavish outside and inside decorations to the children putting up the tree for us
If you’ve noticed, I have not mentioned my illness and that is because I thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for giving me the faith, strength, courage and His Grace and Mercy to endure this situation. He has given me so much time to do the things I had thought about doing but never could find the time because of other pressing issues.
Yes Christmas is a special time to me and it means even more now than ever before; but without those early experiences, I would only have empty memories of what is the most important time of year for Christians.
Have a Merry