The winners of Ruthy’s books are Stephanie, Ginger and Belle. Congratulations, Ladies! Now, on to Diane’s Christmas memory.
Christmas was literally the most wonderful time of the year for me. Being one of seven siblings who were scattered throughout the United States, it was difficult for us to get together with any regularity. But we would all make a conscious effort to trek home to my parents for the holiday. What a wonderful chaotic zoo! That house was filled with blow up mattresses, brothers, sisters, spouses, and tons and tons of excited children. We baked and cooked and played and decorated and wrapped enough presents to fill a department store. We had snow ball fights and went sledding. For many years, Christmas meant everything to me.
But life changes. As my parent’s aged and their health deteriorated that big white house we all gathered in was sold. My children grew up and moved to different states. Eventually my parents died. My husband died. And this past year I lost my brother.
Christmas never felt the same again.
But, oh, what wonderful family memories! They will never be gone.
Recently, though, God blessed me with a second chance, a real Christmas miracle!
I had just finished writing my fifth book Hidden In Plain View (which I will be happily giving to one of the readers of this blog) when something miraculous happened…
Well, maybe I should put a slice of the dear reader here: “This book deals with the underlying theme of adoptions and self-identity. Sarah is born in the English world but raised in the Amish. When tragic circumstances develop, the main question raised is: What constitutes family? Do you belong in the one you were born into, or do you belong in the family that raised you? In April 2012, I received a certified letter that changed my life. A child I had given up for adoption more than forty years ago had found me. The ripples of that moment have stretched out and touched all my family and friends in many ways. God has blessed me, and I will be forever thankful”
Last Christmas was the first one I spent with my lost son and his family. It was filled with family and pets and blow-up mattresses and games and gifts. Before anyone opened their gifts, my son stopped them, thanked his wife and his children for being there to share with him the first Christmas he would have with his mother.
As I write this blog, I am packed to leave in the morning for a second Christmas with my son—and my other sons are as much a part of his family now as if they had all grown up together—and I sit at Christmas dinner with his adoptive parents who opened their arms and welcomed me into the family just like I’d never been gone.
My son and I have been so moved by this journey that we wrote a book about it called One Perfect Day and it will be published April, 2014 by Skyhorse Publishing. It is an awesome story and we are both happy to share it.
Christmas has come full circle for me. Yes, it is definitely my favorite time of year and I hope is for you and your family, too.
Diane is giving away a copy of her October release Hidden In Plain View and a set of \star Christmas ornaments.
Diane lives in sunny Florida between the excitement of Disney and the quiet, quaint history of St. Augustine. She has three sons, six grandchildren, three step-grandchildren, one dog and considers every day of her life a blessing.
*To be eligible for Diane’s book, you must leave a comment and live within the Continental United States. Winner will be selected using Random.org. The winner will be notified Dec 25th and posted on the sidebar as well.
7 responses to “24th Day of Christmas~Diane Burke”
Wow. Seven children is impressive. I grew up in a family of five, so I’m familiar with the large family thing. Thank you for sharing your wonderful Christmas memories with us. *Not in drawing. Please let someone else be blessed with this gift.
Thank you sharing this special time with me. It is nice to run into someone with a large family as well. Hope you and your family have a blessed and Merry Christmas!
Adoption is such a beautiful picture of how God relates to us. Add reconciliation to the mix, and it is even more amazing! How wonderful to have more family!
I have been so blessed to have this wonderful family added to mine. The adopted parents have been so accepting and welcoming! Ever since April 2012, I feel it is Christmas every day! Blessings from my home to yours!
What a touching story, Diane. Thank you for sharing it. Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas to you, too, m
Can’t wait to read your book, Diane. Merry Christmas!