A “Big Blue Coat” Kind of Christmas

Dear Reader:

Blustery winds and frigid temperatures have descended on the Low Country. “Big Red” the giant geranium, has been taken  on the B&B side to wait out this unusual cold snap.

The weather dropped from a high of 70 degrees Christmas Eve to  30 degrees overnight with high winds and torrential rainfall…. the temps were still struggling to get into the forties Christmas Day…and this pattern continues for a few more days.

It was “Big Blue Coat” weather…without a doubt. Christmas morning I started layering with jeans, turtlenecks, scarves and the crowning glory…”Big Blue”….the Ya’s blue coat that we bought each other for our birthdays in 2018. We must have known a special time would come…and that time was yesterday to wear it… Christmas morning…2020!

By now we should have all figured out that if anything was coming in with weird weather it would be the Christmas of 2020…why break a crazy pattern this late in the year?

Since the family gathering was much smaller this year Christmas Eve and Christmas morning…it gave me more reflective time to observe ..and I loved what I saw….fun and fellowship.

Thank you Mollie and Walsh for having the family Christmas Eve gathering…everything was so beautifully decorated inside and out…loved those lights…and the children’s cookie decorating contest was such a fun addition to the festivities.

The girls were all decked out this year…a slight “heel” for Eva Cate with a touch of a wobble…but she was so happy it didn’t matter.)

Uncle Ben discovered that children putting “rabbit ears” on ‘great-uncles’ is the only way to go to be part of the “team.”

On the way to the annual Christmas breakfast brunch at John and Mandy’s yesterday…I wasn’t dreaming of sugar plums…but breakfast casseroles, sweet rolls, and luscious fruit…along with Mimosa! 🙂

The “cousins” were all wearing their Christmas look-alike …pj’s…Now some families might be able to get a clear picture of everyone posing sweetly….apparently that trait skipped this whole family generation…gotta love’em still.

The nicest thing about being an observer this time around was that after everyone got through squealing over their presents…they started helping another learn how to put their new toy together ….uncles with nephews, cousins with cousins, aunts with nephews and nieces…everyone had a buddy partner.

Lachlan and Jake now look like twins from the back….too cute.

Six months apart….






When I sent a family Christmas photo to Bill Dingle…he responded with a “Postcard Christmas Day picture.” He took this photo walking from the barn  after milking the cow….serene winter day. Mountain living with all its benefits!  Breath-taking scenery!

Bill also showed his children how to “make a gingerbread house.” (Enlarge for full effect!) 🙂

The doorbell rang around 4:30 and it was one of my all-time favorite elves….Stephanie…we only had a few minutes to chat…but we made the most of it…I adore Stephanie and always have since she was brave enough to babysit…the little Dingles! 🙂

Look what she brought me….too funny! A “Who-ville Tree“….actually lemon tree for planting later and some rosemary. Smells so good in the house!

So until tomorrow….Found on  the back of Lee, Vikki, and Rhodes cute Christmas card…I love this quote Vikki added… along with her personal comment…

Mother Teresa said, “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” Vikki continues….”Let us all begin this new year remembering that we are all humans, living on our one and only planet Earth, and that we belong to each other.”


“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Tommy and Kaitlyn gave me a “Dingle Candle” named Christmas Night…so last night was the right time…the smell was remarkable…a blend of myrrh, frankincence, and citrus.

I hope one and all were able to stay warm…not just by “big blue coats” but by friendship and fellowship…being part of something bigger than yourselves…humanity. Merry Christmas!

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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4 Responses to A “Big Blue Coat” Kind of Christmas

  1. Rachel Edwards says:


  2. Cynthia Ashley says:

    What a wonderful Christmas blog. Merry Christmas Becky.

    • Becky Dingle says:

      So wonderful to hear from you Cindy! I hope you and Dennis had a wonderful one…even if small…I keep telling myself that one day we will look back at this Christmas and realize that “all being calm and even bright” gave us more time to reflect on our lives right now…and be happy simply to be alive.

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