Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Home for Christmas December 27, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 10:10 AM
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I’M AT THAT AGE of material gifts carrying minimal importance. All I want is time with those I love most.

This Christmas I received my most desired gift—having all three of my grown children back home in Minnesota. They arrived here from greater Boston, northeastern Wisconsin and as close as an hour away.

It was our first time together since June 2015. We hugged and laughed and ate too much food and delighted in our first Christmas with nearly nine-month-old baby Isabelle. Babies bring such joy in to a family.




I was a happy mama, a happy grandma. Two friends remarked after Christmas Eve worship services that I looked so happy with my sweet granddaughter in my arms. I was.

Now, two days later, the family is gone with the exception of the son who will be here for awhile yet. Last night, after I’d just snuggled under the covers, he came into my bedroom, bent over and kissed my cheek ever so gently. I could have cried at the tenderness of that kiss, at the overwhelming love I felt for my boy in that moment. For my family.

© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


22 Responses to “Home for Christmas”

  1. Dan Traun Says:

    I couldn’t agree more with “material gifts carrying minimal importance.” Spending time with family is the greatest gift as are experiences; not stuff. Here is to more time with family and experiences in 2017 and beyond. Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year!

  2. Family is the greatest gift and blessing 🙂 Loving your photos – looks like the little one is getting oh so big as well as teething. I so very much enjoyed my time spent with family (one I have not seen 2004). We got to hang out and play as well as gather to eat and watch the classic holiday movies. Happy Day – Enjoy!

    • Oh, Renee, that’s a long time not to see family. I am so happy you had this time together.

      Yes, Isabelle has teeth and is cutting several more. She’s also crawling. We even all took guesses on when she will be walking as she is already pulling herself up. The winner gets to babysit her. I want to win! And even if I don’t win, I’ll likely call her parents and suggest that they have a date night.

  3. Marneymae Says:

    Happiness definitely shines from you in that photo with Isabelle.
    I’m glad this Christmas you were surrounded by loved ones!

  4. Carol Says:

    Audrey, you are blessed! And it’s obvious you are very much aware of that fact and are grateful. It is so good for all of us to see that.

    Happy New Year to you, your family, and to all!


    Interesting detail from your photo: The dresser behind your tree looks exactly like our’s, which came from my husband’s family farm in West Central MN (Maine Township). We have left the dresser “as is”.
    Happy New Year!

    • That dresser was shared by my dad and his oldest brother while growing up on a farm near Vesta in Redwood County, Minnesota. Interesting that you have the same one from the same general area.

      As far as I know, the dresser is in its original state. I got it from my mom a few years ago and treasure it for the connection to my dad and my beloved bachelor uncle, very much a part of my life while growing up.

  6. Jenny Says:


  7. Jackie Says:

    So much truth in your words Audrey. There is just something about having those kids home. So glad you were all together! Your family photo is lovely but the baby and you….oh my, you are stunning, and Izzy is the cutest for sure!

  8. Almost Iowa Says:

    Nothing can be better.

  9. agshap Says:

    Nothing lights up a grandmas eyes like her grandchildren and children. I am blessed that most live near me – one is about an hour away…..looking forward to a sleep-over tomorrow….

  10. It sounds like you had a great Christmas and that little one seems to be enjoying her fingers.

  11. Littlesundog Says:

    You are simply radiant in these photos, Audrey. And that kiss from your son… I can just picture how you must have looked! Thank you for sharing the warmth and gladness of Christmas joy.

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