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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tis The Season, Part 3...

If you've been around here this week, you know I'm sharing some of my favorite holiday memories. Since I told a farm story yesterday, I thought I'd stick with that theme and share another farm related memory today. As I mentioned yesterday, we have a dairy farm. What I didn't mention is that we don't actually live on the farm. We live in town in a neighborhood. (I'd explain why, but that would be some really unnecessary back story.) Anyway, a couple of years ago on Christmas morning, my husband brought home an unexpected guest who was in need of a warm place to stay and a meal. That's what the holidays are all about, right? Welcoming the needy into your home? Only this needy one came in the form of a newborn calf. It was so new, in fact, that it couldn't stand yet. It's mother had died while giving birth, and the poor calf was starving for milk and freezing. My kids took turns bottle feeding it in our garage while all the neighbors came to see the strange visitor. After all, most of them had never been that close to a newborn calf. Sometimes the most unexpected moments are also the most memorable. Same goes with writing. I just love it when something unexpected happens in my manuscripts. Any unexpected holiday memories you'd like to share?

20 comments:

Anne Gallagher said...

Oh Susan, what a beautiful story. The kids must have gotten a kick out of that.

Stephanie McGee said...

Am I the only one reminded of City Slickers 2 when he's jogging with Norman the Cow?

Just thought I'd put that out there. As for unexpected on the holidays, nothing comes to mind. I love traditions and we always stick to them. I guess the most unexpected was the Christmas we were in Boston and on Christmas Eve the power went out so we were freezing cold, bundled up in layer upon layer, going about our usual Christmas Eve traditions (minus the feast because the apartment kitchen was as big as your thumb nail).

Jennifer Shirk said...

Aw, Susan, what a sad but sweet story. That's a great Christmas memory.

Beth Mann said...

That is the sweetest thing I have ever heard! I love baby animals! My brother and his wife and son surprised us with a visit on Christmas Eve two years ago after pretending they couldn't come! That was unexpected and SO like my brother :)

MG Higgins said...

What a wonderful story! I'm glad you mentioned about NOT living on the farm so I can change the picture in my imagination. (I had you living in a Victorian farm house with three dogs and several chickens in the yard.)

Jaime said...

Awwww ... I love baby animals!!! Isn't farm life fun? I remember having baby goats jumping in our kitchen 'cause it was negative digits cold and they needed warmth. SO fun!

The Book Nut said...

Our most unexpected Christmas was similar to Stephanie's. About two days before Christmas a few years back, the entire area was hit by a huge ice storm. There was no power anywhere in the county. We had a small generator so we could have a few lamps, keep the fridge going and light up the Christmas tree. It was like camping and the kids loved it! It was neat though because about 11 am the power came on for most of the afternoon and then went off again for another day and a half. It was like a Christmas present from the power company!

Valerie Geary said...

Awww, cute. I love cows. Their big slurpy tongues and floppy ears. I wish I was your neighbor. :)

Angela Ackerman said...

Growing up we had a grain farm that we didn't live on, so I can relate. I love this moment, and you're right--often it's the unexpected ones that leave the strongest imprint on us and those around us.


Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Patti said...

That's a memory that will stay with them forever. I couldn't think of anything unexpected, we're just too ordinary.

Laura Pauling said...

What a wonderful memory! My kids would never forget something like that.

strugglingwriter said...

My holidays have been mostly, wonderfully, "unexpected moments" free.

Yours is a great story, though.

Diane said...

Hope the calf made it. How exciting to see and nurture! :O)

Chris Phillips said...

My in-laws take in possums and raccoons on occasion, but I'm not sure if they've ever brought a calf inside.

Elana Johnson said...

What a great story to remind us that the unexpected is often the most marvelous. :)

T. Anne said...

That's an awesome story! I wish I had a fun unexpected guest like that, but nothing. I have given two puppies to my children over the years and those were great memories. I might give a beta fish this year. Somehow I don't think it'll be as magical. ;)

Plamena said...

I don't know why, but this: "(I'd explain why, but that would be some really unnecessary back story.)" struck me as really funny. Maybe it's a writer's thing.

Very cute but slightly bittersweet story : )

I have to say I usually start to panic when something really unexpected happens in my writing, but there are times when it turns out like a really nice addition and I'm very happy I though of it!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Oh, that's so sweet about the calf.

I'm working on my first draft and I'm getting all kinds of suprises even though I outlined the book first. But now it's even better. :)

Heather Sunseri said...

What a wonderful story, Susan! Some of my favorite childhood memories are of helping my father, the Veterinarian, deliver puppies and watching him deliver calves. I also enjoyed watching horses foal. And those sweet animals standing for the first time. Seeing life come into the world is an amazing experince for children. And when you get to help that along, all the more meaningful.

Name: Holly Bowne said...

Ooooh, I have a good one. Although, technically it wasn't TOTALLY unexpected. See, I was nine months pregnant in December, 19 years ago. My due date was December 16th. But SOMEBODY was late. I kept thinking "Any day but Christmas, any day but Christmas!"

But seriously, what was I thinking? My name is Holly, my hubby's is Chris--what other day would our first child be born on? Ha, ha!