December 2000

Merry CHRISTmas to all of my Friends Of Baby Jesus!

Here we are once again ready to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. It seems like just yesterday that I was sitting in front of the fourteen foot Noble Fir tree in my family room and exchanging gifts. A fire crackling from the imported rain forest logs that I am so fond of, Laquitia's special Christmas Latté, and a platter filled with cross shaped pastries. Ah, there is nothing like Christmas. And here it is that time again. Personally, I celebrate Baby Jesus' birthday everyday . There is not a morning that goes by that I don't look across my Four Season sun room at Him and say, "Baby Jesus, I am just tickled that you were born."

Now, we don't have cake and ice cream each morning, and sing Happy Birthday (though He would very much like for us to) but I do provide Him with a lovely buffet and a coffee bar. But December 25th is extra special - That is the day that all the stops are pulled out just for Him. On this day and the 20 or so days leading up to it. He is in the spotlight. (Or shall I say, that we allow him think He is anyway).

This year I am going to be doing something different to celebrate the CHRISTmas season. In addition to the traditional Christmas Trees for the common areas, the fresh holly and seasonal flora's, I will be adding a live Nativity to my decor. Just outside the gated entrance to my manse I have assembled a staffed and fully functioning manger. Allow me to tell you all about it before sharing some holiday tips that can be adapted to suit your little lifestyle.

When my husband, Daniel Crockett III - Church elder, Deacon, and CEO of Crockett Industries National (which includes but is not limited to: a chain of Christian service stations, the Baptist Cable Television Network, and several textile mills in Ros Dashan, Ethiopia) and I were given the opportunity to adopt a family for the holidays, we jumped on it. In fact, we ended up adopting three. This was to be our chance to give back to mankind for all that we have been blessed with. "Daniel", I said, "I know just the thing we can do. Instead of simply giving these poor people food and clothing for the holidays, let's give them some self-esteem to go with it. They can WORK for us. And so the Crockett Live Nativity came about being. One family, a young homeless couple with a new baby, will serve as Joseph and Mary. I really wanted a couple that was expecting a baby so that we could induce labor on Christmas Eve and she could give birth to her own "little Jesus". But the only ones that the shelter could come up with were "not the right kind of people". This worked out just as well because this way, we will not have to wait until Christmas eve for the birth.

The next family, actually one of my Mexican landscapers and three sons, shall be the Three Wise men and a shepherd boy. Now, at first I was concerned about their skin tone not being right. But as Daniel pointed out to me, no one will really be looking at them anyway. So I keep the lights dim on the area in which they are stationed.

Lastly, we adopted a nice colored family that Laquitia knows (and one that we can trust) to tend to the live animals that complete the nativity, and to see to the needs of the Holy Family. The manger is kept broom clean, and the grounds around it are kept free of manure. The old Negro spirituals that they hum while they are working also adds a festive holiday touch.

Each evening from 6:00pm until 11:00pm, the families arrive at their little manger and entertain all who drive past the manse to see my light display (over 1 millions white lights this year). They are paid minimum wage and given a hot meal at the end of each shift. The true reward, however, is that they are gaining actual work experience and not accepting charity. It really is a nice situation for all involved and thus far nothing has taken up missing in the neighborhood.

Now that I have shared with you what someone of means can do to give back to the community for the holidays, I will give with you a few tips that the more common person can do on a budget. It really doesn't take a lot of money to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate. Just a bit of forethought and ingenuity that I will tell you about right now.

*Buy several cases of Romaine Noodles from your local wholesale club. Wrap them in actual Bible pages that you have bought from a discount store and torn out. Then add a bright red bow (symbolizing the blood of Jesus) and distribute to the needy. This way the recipient can receive the fixings of a Christmas dinner and the word of God. They are lightweight and can be easily tossed out the window of a moving car by even a small child which means you won't have to linger in seedy, neighborhoods inhabited by trash.

*Go to a Synagogue Temple and sing Christmas carols into a PA system that is hooked up to the back of a flat bed truck. As a nice touch, be sure to take plenty of hot cocoa and ham biscuits to give to all who come outside to see what is going on. (And I assure you there will be plenty). Instead of giving them napkins, use the left over New Testament Bible pages!

*This is a good time to clean out your basement, garage, closets, and pantries. Anything that you have lying around and don't use or has spoiled can be wrapped up and given as presents to the hired help and really anyone who is less fortunate. You would be surprised how appreciative someone will be of that old blender base, or Trivial Pursuit game with missing cards when it is gaily wrapped and tied off with a handmade gold bow with matching foil label. The perceived value is limitless - as will be your tax deduction.

*It is this time of year that the so-called "Salvation Army" has their red suited devils out in front of every store harassing God's people for a donation to feed and clothe the filthy. "They 'serve' the homeless instead of forcing them to get a job, like us True Christians. They spread liberalism like the disease it is, and persecute True Christians in the process! But you must remember that some of these "Salvation Army Santas" are indeed actual homeless people and drug addicts from one of them shelters. So don't make them angry or they may kill you later on. One trick that I have is to keep a single nickel in my left coat pocket that I will pull out and show them. Then, while exclaiming, "Oh, that's not near enough!", I reach into my right pocket which is filled with washers and blanks (for just such a purpose) and I toss a handful into the pot. They will think you're giving them real money. But you will have managed to shut them shut them up for free.

*Lastly, this is the time of year that I like to really reach out to those mislead and confused souls who are going to hell and are too stupid to realize it. Take the vegetarians for example. Last year I ran across a blind street woman, who when tossed my gift of Romaine Noodles and had the nerve to ask me if it contained meat. After explaining to me that she was a "vegan" (which is a form of Satanism all in it's own) and did not eat meat, I took it back. I reached into the limo and retrieved a pack of beef jerky that my Sister in Christ, Heather Hardwick had left from when she was on that silly Atkin's Diet. (Now, that diet lasted an entire three days, I tell you) "Here dear, have this Salty Soy Snack instead". She would eat in a Godly manner whether she wanted to or not. And then there was the Christmas luncheon that I went to at a distant cousins home. Her entire tree was decorated from top to bottom with Santa Claus ornaments, which are of the Devil. Try as I would I could not convince her that she was setting her home for the wrath of God. So, I simply took a hairpin and shorted out the wires to the tree. Later that evening she called me and said that the tree and her entire living room have been consumed with fire. "Better your ghastly tree than your internal soul", I told her.

See, Friends? There are countless ways to serve the Lord, those less fortunate, and your own agendas all at the same time. It just takes perseverance, dedication, and the ability to pull it off with style. I trust that this years Christmas With Sister Taffy will give you some wonderful ideas for creating a beautiful holiday season and the ability to do so within your own means. Like I always say, "If you have to ask the price - You can't afford it. And if you can't afford it - Charge it!".

Wishing you the Holiest of CHRISTmas's In His name,

Sister Taffy

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