Jan 5 2014

Peaceful Scenes

Melissa Crytzer Fry

Wishing you a 2014 filled with new sights and sounds, peaceful scenes and unexpected pleasures.

Sonoran sunset. Click to enlarge.

The desert's brilliant hedgehog. Click to enlarge.

Cow-poking along in the desert. Click to enlarge.

Unexpected photo capture on our new trail camera: resident bobcat getting ready to enter mining tube. Click to enlarge.

Fallen flowers along the Aravaipa River. Click to enlarge.

Arizona cardinal visiting my front window. Click to enlarge.

Dec 22 2013

A Christmas Story

Melissa Crytzer Fry

What makes some Christmas stories stand the test of time while others fade and fizzle? You know the kind: when told year after year, they melt our hearts with a sizzle.

My husband, with his childlike sense of holiday wonder, wrote wired his own Christmas story this year. He was influenced by this:

Yes, these are the prep items assembled for our trek to Tiny Town’s* first-ever Light Parade: a bowl filled with candy to throw to the children, Grinch hats, gloves, and face bandanas for the cold drive to town.

I should explain that hubby is fascinated by all things electronic and lit-up. He’s also played Santa to children in impoverished Phoenix neighborhoods before. So when he read about the parade in the local paper, he was “in.”

This year, donning a hat much different than Santa’s, he hopped into his side-by-side, draped as it was in festive lights, with blaring speakers to boot.

Before the big event, we posed hubby’s handiwork in front of the snow-covered mountains that make up our view:

And then we set off  – along the railroad tracks into the backside of Tiny Town – to meet Neighbor Mark and Roxanne who, unlike us, played by the rules with their Disney-themed Ranger.

Mark and Roxanne, Santa-hatted, beside their Mickey Mobile.

The street lined with little ones came to life, numbed fingers grasping at candy. Hubby, oh-so-handy, weaved side to side handing out sweets. Behind us beeped and bopped the fire truck, sirens singing and Christmas songs ringing.

I have a feeling we won’t simply re-tell this story each year. We’ll re-live it by participating again and again.

And the Grinch, it turns out, was the perfect ambassador because remember:

“… in Whoville they say – that the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day. And then – the true meaning of Christmas came through, and the Grinch found the strength of*ten Grinches, plus two!”

For Readers, Writers, Everyone: What are your favorite Christmas stories? Why do they resonate with you? Have you begun any new holiday traditions over the years?

Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!

*Not the actual name, of course, of our small town. It just seemed to fit with this Seuss-esque post, don’t you think?