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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year From:Joey

We would like to wish everyone a great Christmas and a Happy New Year .This has been a great year for us here in Oklahoma.I would like to thank everyone that has visited my web pages and all the possitive feedback I have recieved. With over 141,000 hits on my Wrestling page last year and tons of e-mail I have made lots of friends learned lots new things.It makes the sport i love worthwhile and fun.

I would also like to take this time to remind everyone that Jesus is the reason for the season and without him there would be no holiday celebrations .Not a day goes by that I have to stop and thank God for all of the blessings he has sent my way.

 


The Small White Envelope

(Nancy Gavin)


It's just a small, white envelope stuck among the branches of our
Christmas tree. No name, no identification, no inscription. It has
peeked through the branches of our tree for the past ten years or
so.

It all began because my husband Mike hated Christmas - oh, not the
true meaning of Christmas, but the commercial aspects of it -
overspending... the frantic running around at the last minute to
get a tie for Uncle Harry and the dusting powder for Grandma - the
gifts given in desperation because you couldn't think of anything
else.

Knowing he felt this way, I decided one year to bypass the usual
shirts, sweaters, ties and so forth. I reached for something
special just for Mike.

The inspiration came in an unusual way.

Our son Kevin, who was 12 that year, was wrestling at the junior
level at the school he attended; and shortly before Christmas,
there was a non-league match against a team sponsored by an
inner-city church. These youngsters, dressed in sneakers so ragged
that shoestrings seemed to be the only thing holding them together,
presented a sharp contrast to our boys in their spiffy blue and
gold uniforms and sparkling new wrestling shoes. As the match
began, I was alarmed to see that the other team was wrestling
without headgear, a kind of light helmet designed to protect a
wrestler's ears.

It was a luxury the ragtag team obviously could not afford. Well,
we ended up walloping them. We took every weight class. And as each
of their boys got up from the mat, he swaggered around in his
tatters with false bravado, a kind of street pride that couldn't
acknowledge defeat.

Mike, seated beside me, shook his head sadly, "I wish just one of
them could have won," he said. "They have a lot of potential, but
losing like this could take the heart right out of them."

Mike loved kids - all kids - and he knew them, having coached
little league football, baseball and lacrosse. That's when the idea
for his present came. That afternoon, I went to a local sporting
goods store and bought an assortment of wrestling headgear and
shoes and sent them anonymously to the inner-city church. On
Christmas Eve, I placed the envelope on the tree, the note inside
telling Mike what I had done and that this was his gift from me.
His smile was the brightest thing about Christmas that year and in
succeeding years. For each Christmas, I followed the tradition -
one year sending a group of mentally handicapped youngsters to a
hockey game, another year a check to a pair of elderly brothers
whose home had burned to the ground the week before Christmas, and
on and on.

The envelope became the highlight of our Christmas. It was always
the last thing opened on Christmas morning and our children,
ignoring their new toys, would stand with wide-eyed anticipation as
their dad lifted the envelope from the tree to reveal its contents.

As the children grew, the toys gave way to more practical presents,
but the envelope never lost its allure. The story doesn't end
there.

You see, we lost Mike last year due to dreaded cancer. When
Christmas rolled around, I was still so wrapped in grief that I
barely got the tree up. But Christmas Eve found me placing an
envelope on the tree, and in the morning, it was joined by three
more.

Each of our children, unbeknownst to the others, had placed an
envelope on the tree for their dad. The tradition has grown and
someday will expand even further with our grandchildren standing to
take down the envelope.

Mike's spirit, like the Christmas spirit will always be with us.
May we all remember Christ, who is the reason for the season, and
the true Christmas spirit this year and always.


 

So once again I would like to wish everyone a very ...

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Joey Miller