Monday, December 03, 2012

On the Third Day of December

Close to 15 years ago I was working in the kitchen of our home in Ecuador and overheard the following conversation from the living room:

Child: When Mom and Dad die, I want the Nativity scene. I'm the only son.

Another child: No way, I get the Nativity scene. I'm the eldest.

Yet another child: Why should you guys get it? I'm the youngest. I want it.

I laugh about this every year when I put out the hand-carved walnut creche. Good memories. Thus, to avoid squabbles after we are gone, before leaving Ecuador, we gifted each child with their very own hand-carved creche. 

Which still doesn't solve the problem of what will happen to it after we are gone. But then, I really won't care, will I?

I mark the days of Advent on my grown-up girl's Advent Calendar, set in the front entrance.

This morning, on the Gladsome Lights blog, I read this poem. Then I copied it into my journal. Now I share it with you to ponder. 

The Bright Field

I have seen the sun break through
to illuminate a small field
for a while, and gone my way
and forgotten it. But that was the pearl
of great price, the one field that had
the treasure in it. I realize now
that I must give all that I have
to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after
an imagined past. It is the turning
aside like Moses to the miracle
of the lit bush, to a brightness
that seemed as transitory as your youth
once, but is the eternity that awaits you.

R. S. Thomas (1913-2000) Welsh poet 



  1. Thank you for this poem, Lorrie! My middle name is Pearl and my Mom often called me her "pearl of great price" as a compliment. I thought she got that expression from the John Steinbeck book of that title, but now I am thinking she might have remembered it from this poem, as she loved poetry.
    Your nativity set is beautiful! Perhpas your children will share it one day, many years from now?

  2. I read an article in a magazine a long time ago, and it explained how the parents had labelled everything in the house with each child's name (underneath and out of sight) so that when they were gone the kids would know who got what. Maybe you should divide up your nativity scene and give a piece to each child.

  3. The creche, well it's mine. :)

  4. Aww the crèche is so sweet..
    Love for you x

  5. What a beautiful post! I love the creche debate, your beautiful Advent Calendar (wow!) and that poem. Just what I needed to read today.
    Thanks for always leaving a sweet and thoughtful comment on my blog. Some days I really need those words of support (don't we all?!).

    xo Terri

  6. A beautiful post. And I love your little advent calendar. Even as a "grown up" I would think it would help us focus on the anticipation of remembering Christ's birth. Our creche goes back 3o years --to Africa and back. It is durable plastic and doesn't seem to be able to break, so the grandchildren now enjoy playing with it.

  7. Lorrie, I love your advent calendar. I may need to find one for myself; I miss having an advent calendar out. Oh I do love the poem. I do love to eavesdrop on the conversations of children. Have a wonderful week. Bonnie

  8. Such a beautiful poem, Lorrie.

  9. Will there be a test? Because, just now, I'm brain dead and I want the teacher to explain it to me. ☺

    Oh the Nativity is lovely and your kids all have great taste. You should have planned ahead and purchased more for future grandchildren. Course, you'd have to have sold your son and he probably wouldn't have liked that.

    Your grown up girl Advent calendar is very neat. No chocolate? Just sweet thoughts...

  10. Hello Lorrie

    A beautiful story of your kids arguing about their inheritance.

    It is a beautiful set.

    Helen xx

  11. Hi Lorrie - here you are! I sent you an email - couldn't get on here before. Thanks for your visit to my blog! I love how your kids were all wanting the nativity. That should make you feel so good to know all your kids treasured that family tradition. Glad they all have one now - and if you want to get rid of the original, I'll be glad to take it off your hands... :)

  12. I love your advent calendar and what a perfect place to display it!

  13. Beautiful advent calendar. Loved your story of the creche (too cute).

    And what a perfect poem for me today. Thank you for sharing it. I needed those words.

  14. The creche, the advent calendar and the poem. All very lovely. Kit

  15. I like a poem whose message must be pondered...over one ruminates and considers. Thank you for sharing it. In the Bible, the pearl of great price is Jesus...and oh how worth it to spend all we have to buy that field!

    Love the story of the beloved creche! :D

  16. Thank you for the poem. After a very long and hard day it is wonderful to sit at the computer, in my pjs and read such uplifting verse.

  17. Anonymous8:30 AM

    I think the eldest GRANDCHILD should get it... but maybe I'm biased towards that particular Little Miss :) - Katie, DIL

  18. I agree...... I think the oldest grandchild should get it. There... it's settled!!! ha! Love the poem........thank you for sharing that...

  19. Hey, what about the second little Miss? She'd love her Nana's nativity set.

    1. Anonymous2:55 PM

      I guess our Little Misses can just have our sets... then poor Nana's set is cast adrift again ;)

    2. And so it carries on! And I laugh some more! Maybe we'll auction it off for charity.

  20. It gets complicated doesn't it! I have one daughter who seems to be putting her name on everything. Her sisters just laugh but I think I'll leave it all to the grandkids!

  21. I can see why they were lining up for it! Beautiful. I'm sure your granddaughters will know exactly what to do with it one day.

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  23. I would want it too, as it is so beautiful! And the poem is very wonderful to read.

  24. I would want it too, as it is so beautiful! And the poem is very wonderful to read.


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