The best Dec. 23 ever

Published 6:50 am Wednesday, December 28, 2022

By Ricky Swindle

Muffler Shop Musings

Howdy, friends!

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

I trust y’all had a wonderful Christmas at your nests. I hope you were warm in all that crazy sub-zero windchill temps we experienced. That was some teeth chattering coldness for sure.

Me and my better half had the best Dec. 23 ever.

We took over my Momma’s tradition of having our Christmas with our kids on Dec. 23.  It’s just a good day to do it for our family because it works out so well. 

Well, this year was a very different and special Dec. 23. Our boy Mason and his wife Shelby we’re expecting their first child, and our sixth Grand Heathen.

They were in Clarksdale hospital Thursday night under the care of probably the best baby doctor in our part of the country, Dr. Demali. He had delivered three of my Heathens already.

As the Arctic wind began to blow angrily Thursday night, we watched it all from the hospital window. We were anxiously waiting for a little fella that had no plans of leaving the warm, safe environment of his Mother to come join his new grandparents.

Shelby’s folks along with me and Leigh decided to get a room at The Hampton Inn in case the little heathen changed his mind later on, well he didn’t.

The next day being the 23rd, I headed back to town to start heating up all the food Leigh had been preparing all week.

Our heated home was fine and our water pipes were well secured, but when I pulled in my drive, my heart sank. Although I’m positive I secured everything, the door to my DewDrop Inn was standing wide open.

My sink was iced over, the water still trickling through. The toilet in the bathroom was frozen top to bottom. 

So I took a space heater and placed it on the lid of the commode and turned the heat on high and closed the door. All I could do was pray and wait.

I began heating up Leigh’s Christmas meal she worked all week preparing and every 30 minutes I ran out back to check on my man cave.

After the afternoon had all but passed, I was blessed to find that the old DewDrop Inn had survived the winter storm. I’m glad I spent the money a few years back to have all the pipes replaced in pex. I had dodged a bullet.

My girls came over around 4:30 to assist their Daddy, as I’m not really a handy person in the kitchen.

I prayed over our meal and thanked Jesus for blessing all my little bunch and asked Him to be with Leigh, Mason, Shelby and Shelby’s folks as they waited for our new blessing who was on the way.

Around the time my GrandHeathens were finishing up going through their big sacks, Leigh messaged me and my daughters were hollering “Get going, Daddy, now, the baby’s coming.”

As Jerry Reed sang “West Bound & Down Load It Up And Truck It,” me and the Hemi Ram headed that way.

As I was coming to the railroad tracks in Marks, Leigh called and said “He’s here!”

Twenty minutes later I was in Clarksdale and my son handed me my beautiful sixth GrandHeathen, Zepplin Haze Anthony, 7 pounds, three ounces of a healthy boy baby. Born at 8 p.m. on Dec. 23 – Granny Annie’s original Christmas Day celebration.

It don’t get no better than that, folks.

Momma is healthy and baby is healthy. God is good all the time and all the time God is good.

Take care of yourself folks and let’s get ready for the new year. 

I’m gonna eat all the peas, greens, cabbage and ham hocks I can hold. 

These GrandHeathens don’t come cheap so I’ll take all the luck and money I can get.