A dusting of snow surprised me this morning.  Rooftops are covered making a good landing place for St. Nicholas and his sleigh.  The only other place it stuck was on the holly and the ivy which reminded me of the lovely old English Christmas Carol.  My friends in Tanzania won’t know that carol or its meaningful words.  I have seen neither holly nor ivy there.  Sticker bushes, yes,  but not with dark green shiny leaves and deep red berries that will bring the elegant Cedar Waxwings through in late winter.

Here’s a little “Google lesson” :  “The Holly and the Ivy have always been taken indoors during the winter, the hope being that the occupants would survive difficult conditions just like the hardy Holly and the Ivy.”  I always thought it was because of the green and red colors associated with Christmas.

When I see signs or get e-mails that remind me that there are only 14 shopping days ’til Christmas  I want to go to Tanzania with bags of goodies for my friends.  Thanks to so many of you who have sent generous checks this Christmas we will be able to see to some medical needs there come summer, basics such as food and education, so much better than a bag full of plastic toys that they wouldn’t know what to do with anyway.

“The holly bears a berry as red as any blood.  And Mary bore sweet Jesus Child to do poor sinners good.”