Friday, December 26, 2008

My Christmas Gift

Wowzers! I can't believe another Christmas has come and gone. I can't believe how sick you can make yourself by overeating. I can't believe how much I'm paying for it today. Hello gym. You're my new home for the next month.

"Ho Ho" managed to get all the gifts wrapped, under the tree, and even figured out how to get through the glass in front of the fireplace (something Anna Lynn was VERY concerned about). However, I think this may be the last year Santa actually exists as Anna Lynn is starting to put the pieces together. It's hard to explain that it really was Santa that brought the Lincoln Logs that have been riding around in the back of the Tahoe for a month.

Christmas was wonderful this year. In fact, it's probably one of the best Christmas's we've had in a while. Partly because it has been made clear to savor EVERY special moment we have with our family, and partly because we were all so sleep deprived and exhausted that we were beyond giddy. We missed Zac so much, but he was included in all that we did. The little butt had all of his Christmas shopping done and paid for by the rest of us. Funny how he always managed to sucker all of us...he's still doing it...right down to the Christmas cards :) Trust me, it's not the first time. Love you Zac!

I wanted to share something that Mic made for me and shared with us Christmas morning. Not only did she give me Zac's Bible, one of his favorite shirts, and his "BARBER" badge from his military uniform, but she also made a slideshow that I will forever hold close to my heart. I thought those of you who knew Zac would like to see it. Those of you who didn't know him, well, here he is. He was as handsome as he was kind. He got his good looks from his sister. Completely kidding. Sort-of ;). He was stubborn. He was hilarious. He would do anything for anyone in a heartbeat. He was shy at times. He loved his wife and his baby girl on the way. He loved his family. He also loved the river where he drowned. It was his second home and his escape from all that haunted him from the war.

At the end of the video, you'll see pictures that Mic took over the last 2 years of their river trips. It wasn't until a few weeks ago that she found these rolls of film and had them developed. Funny how things happen. The picture at the very end with his arms in the air was right after he returned home from the military. Mic said he stood up at the front of the boat, threw his hands in the air, and said "I'm free." She snapped a picture and he never knew. Now, just two years later, it was there, on that river, that Zac was truly set "free." If he had only known how true those words would one day be.

Thank you, Mic, for this beautiful tribute to my brother and for doing such a wonderful job raising my precious niece :) Love you girl :)

***check out how much Tripp looks like his Uncle Zac. As long as we can keep Tripp from acting like him, we'll be A-OK! j/k


helfy said...

Have no words to say how much, your story..Zac story, touched me.

Hope christmas time linked you with him one time more.

Ash said...

That was really beautiful. I am sure you will always treasure that. I could see so much of Anna Lynn in you. You two look SOOO much alike after seeing those pics! Your family was in my thoughts and prayers this Christmas and I think you ALL are doing such a great job of honoring Zac.

Janet said...

WOW! That was awesome! (And you are right! It's amazing how much Tripp looks like him!!) :)

Rhett and Leena said...

That was awesome! You two were so cute together as little kids, and that last picture really captured it all. Tell Mic thanks for putting this together. I know it could not have been easy for her.

Elle said...

Wow, what a beautiful video. The last image of Zac at the end really is powerful. So sorry for your loss. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family. You are a fabulous photographer!