By Jessie Padgett
In December of 2014 I had one of my favorite Christmas memories. My parents did an exceptional job each year making something stand out and giving us a special memory. My favorite Christmas memory of all time is when my whole family including my aunt, uncle, cousins and grandparents went on a cruise to the Bahamas. We were gone for 10 days and even spent Christmas morning on the ship. At first we were not so thrilled about missing the “normal” Pagett Christmas where we would attend the candlelight Christmas eve service, wake up at 4 a.m., run down the stairs to jump on my parents, and begging my oldest brother Reed to JUST get up. But there were lots of unexpected and pleasant surprises on our Christmas cruise. Back then we didn’t have smart phones so we were disconnected from our friends back home. Crazy as it sounds, it allowed us to really focus on being together as a family. We woke up Christmas morning and were thrilled to find that Santa had found us and filled our stockings all the way on a cruise ship in the Bahamas. While we opened our stockings we sang Christmas carols and read the Christmas story. This was something my immediate family normally did, but it was a special blessing to be able to share that with my aunt, uncle, cousins and grandparents. This trip and that morning were great reminders that it doesn’t really matter where you are in the world or what your circumstances are but just that you are putting Christ at the center of everything you do and surrounded by your loved ones.