Step into my den, pull up a comfy chair and a cup of tea and let’s chat.

With the kids now home, the presents should be wrapped (or at least stored somewhere where the "no peeking" rule will hold), Christmas Eve and Christmas day menus are planned and, hopefully, all your shopping is done.

If you are like my dad (may he rest in peace), today is the time to start your Christmas shopping!

Our family got used to daddy always waiting until the very last minute to do his shopping — which usually meant a Walgreen’s store that was open until midnight or something small that my sister and I had thoughtfully planned for him as we got older and caught on to his tactic. The best present, though, was one year when mom laughingly said she wanted $1,000. In the early 50’s, that was like asking for $10,000 today.

My family was small, middle-class and dad ran a small gas station business. You know the kind — they pumped your gas, washed your windshield (even in winter) and did small automotive work in two bays. Mom was a stay-at-home mom, and my brother was still a twinkle in my dad’s eye when my sis and I were just beginning high school.

Dad never told us until Christmas Eve that he had been squirreling away money for many months; but could only come up with $900 on Christmas Eve. What to do?

My sister is an artist and forged the most perfect 100 dollar artistic bill to match the other $900! Needless to say, there were tears all around on Christmas morning. It really was not the money that mattered that Christmas morning when mom opened her envelope. To this day, the idea that dad had been that thoughtful and diligent to squeak out that much money from his small business reminds me how precious gifts of love really are.

There are many church services in Greenbrier on Christmas Eve. My church, Greenbrier First United Methodist, will hold a candlelight service from 6-7 p.m., which will include carols, communion and candlelight. I invite you, no matter what you do, to invite your family and friends to share this holy night with you. Enjoy your holiday and be sure to share. Give me a call or drop me a line if you would like to chat……

Please send Greenbrier news, questions, comments, or suggestions to BJ Fox in The Fox’s Den at or call 501-679-3690.