Christmas Morning, by Pat Bortz


Christmas Morning(2)


I want to thank my good friend and talented author, Pat Bortz, for sharing this lovely story with me. Although children grow up and start their own family traditions, we can still adjust and embrace the change, like Pat. How have your Christmas traditions changed as your circumstances have evolved? I’d love to hear from you! In the meantime, enjoy Pat’s reflections:


The days of hearing the early morning greeting, “Mommy, wake up. Santa came! Can we open our gifts now?” are long gone. Happily, the sparkling eyes and eager fingers have grown up, moved out and started their own families. But sadly that early Christmas morning ritual continued elsewhere, without me. 

Until ... one delightful year, Pop Pop and I were invited for Christmas breakfast! Out came my special brunch recipe. We arrived early at my daughter’s house that Christmas morning bright eyed and bushy tailed, casserole in hand. At the door we were greeted by our gleeful granddaughters. “Grammy, Santa came! Can we open our gifts now?” A new tradition was born. 


Opening presents on Christmas morning is a happy event at our house. But my favorite tradition is gathering the family around me while I read a child’s version of the two-thousand year old Christmas story. It’s a little cardboard book about the most valuable gift given to the world; a tiny baby, wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. A thousand years before the first Christmas morn, that very birth was predicted to take place in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2) and the Birthday Boy would be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6) Only God could be all those things and His name is Jesus! 


Last year our youngest granddaughter proudly read my short, well worn book to the family. From the mouth of a precious six year old, came the story of Jesus, Savior of the world. In my estimation, Christmas doesn’t get any better than that. 


Children grow up, presents get old, traditions evolve, but one thing never changes - Jesus! He’s the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. He said, “I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.” (John 12:47b) This is the most priceless gift of all. So when you are shopping, baking, wrapping or decorating this coming season, don’t forget to share the love of Jesus with those around you. There is no greater gift. 


(See my recipe below.)


~ Pat Bortz


Novelist Patricia Bortz graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. There she met and married the love of her life, Robert, an exchange student from Luxembourg. Patricia lived and worked in New York for thirty-five years. There, in her spare time, she directed a Christian drama team, taught Sunday school and led a women's Bible study. She is the founder of God’s Girls Getting Together, a Christian women’s organization in Mecklenburg County, VA. 


Patricia’s first novel is entitled Hard Truth: Secret of the Back Row. Hard Truth takes place in the future ... a time less desirable than the past ... a time more destructive than the present. It merges world devastation, romance, devilry and the word of God, intertwining a compelling dose of patriotism. 


Two best friends reunite after many years, only to discover they have developed polarized political and moral views. Megan, a sassy budding TV reporter, hungers for stardom. She believes Sixtus, President of the New World Order, is the only man powerful enough to move civilization forward. Nadia, a teacher turned rebel, disagrees. Rather than succumb, she flees from Sixtus’ godless society. 


Megan and Nadia’s affiliations force them apart, but their loyalty binds them together. They both fight for survival as the world crumbles around them. In a place where Christianity is barred it’s up to two friends to make a change despite their differences. 

Grammy’s Casserole

from Pat Bortz

 

Casserole:

1 large loaf French or hard crusted bread, cubed 

6 eggs 

1 cup heavy cream 

½ cup + 1 tablespoon milk 

1 pinch cloves 

½ teaspoon cinnamon 

1 teaspoon vanilla 


Topping: 

¼ pound (1 stick) butter, room temperature 

1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar 

5 tablespoons light corn syrup 


Assembly: 

1. Spray or grease a 9 x 13 inch baking pan and arrange bread cubes on bottom. 

2. Mix remaining 6 casserole ingredients, pour over bread, and toss lightly. 

3. Refrigerate overnight. 

4. Mix 3 topping ingredients, cover, and leave on counter overnight. 5. In the morning, spread topping over casserole. 

6. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes or until top is golden brown. 

© Bobbi Mullins 2011, All rights reserved. FOOD FITNESS FAITH™