Thursday, December 25, 2008

A Christmas message from healing hearts

~~~~~~~~~The Thought That Counted~~~~~ ~~~

My husband and I raised four sons. Their ages today range
from 28 to 39. We tried to teach them early on that gift giving was
not about the price but ever so much the thought.

Many hours were spent in their younger years creating
construction paper greeting cards and homemade gifts. Smiles pass my
lips when I reflect on the closed doors in our house...A child
yelling "Mom, Dad, Don't come in yet!" Oh, the excitement I heard in
their voices. The love I felt, from their young souls. The spirited
twinkle in their eyes when their creation was presented. Our house
was adorned with many of these gifts. Pencil, crayon, and painted
drawings were framed and hung. Clay sculptures and pots, cute
pillows and such, an art gallery it was to me. Stick reindeers,
beaded ornaments, and a very special red paper Santa dressed our
tree. A tin can Pilgrim was a sight to see. I have in my possession
to this day boxes of these priceless treasures.

Of all the heartfelt moments experiencing their love of
giving, one is forever branded in my mind...

The year was 1990, as was tradition in our home we exchanged
our personal gifts to each other on Christmas Eve. Santa would
provide the Christmas morn. Our second to the oldest son Ben was
16. He was short on cash this year. When it came his turn to pass
out gifts he rose and said, "I want all of you to stand and form a
line oldest to youngest." He then proceeded down the line. Each of
us were hugged and told, "Merry Christmas I love you." His sad eyes
misted with the wish of his heart. Though not having a gift to hand
us he chose, "The Thought That Counted." Ben had chosen, the gift of

With tears streaming down my checks I remember looking at my
precious son and saying, "That is the best Christmas present anyone
could ever receive."

Ben was born on Christmas Eve
12-24-74 A blessed gift to his family

LCPL Benjamin H. Gearheart died
8-27-97 A gift to his country (in a military training accident)

Happy Birthday Ben

From the bottom of our hearts we thank you again this Christmas for
giving us all, "The Thought That Counted."

Love and Miss you, Mom, Dad, Frank, Jeremy, and Brad

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