Home For Christmas

On a chilly winter morning in the 1980s, many members of my family gathered at the St. Louis Airport, awaiting the arrival of a flight from the West Coast. The flight, or at least the passengers we were there for, originated in Seoul, South Korea. The airport was hustling and bustling, on a busy travel day—it was Christmas Eve—but we hardly noticed the crowds.

jen arrival-3

Jennifer in Diane’s arms with Phil and the escort from the adoption agency.

In due time, the flight arrived. More waiting, while the rest of the passengers streamed off, and finally, there they were: a worker from an international adoption agency, carrying a six-month-old baby girl. My brother Phil and his wife Diane had adopted the baby from Korea, and as luck would have it, she arrived on Christmas Eve.

Jennifer Lee was the name they had chosen for her. Phil and Diane rushed to meet her and welcome her home, and it was an amazing sight to see; suddenly, they were a family.

A friend of Phil’s who was a professional videographer was there with a camera. He captured the whole event on video, and later that day, edited it down to a short piece—set to “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.” Whether you’d been there or not, it was impossible to watch that video with dry eyes.  That song is forever fused to that morning in all our memories.

To this day, that Christmas still ranks as my all-time favorite.


Jennifer and Mason

Two days after Christmas this year, Jennifer Lee—all grown up now and a practicing attorney—will again travel down an aisle with everyone watching her. She will be getting married to a gentleman named Mason, and they’ll make 2013 another memorable Christmas for our family. I suspect they’ll be lighting up Christmases for many, many years to come.

Merry Christmas from Shoulblog!


Previous Shoulblog Christmas Posts:

A Christmas Card

“You Are Welcome Here”

Same Kids, Different Trees


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