What to do with Big Lots tree cake pans.

I love to go Christmas caroling. It just seems right to be outside, in the cold, with old and new friends, singing in the dark.

Let me share about the last time we went Christmas caroling. Our planning had started the previous summer. Well, that could be an overstatement. You see, I was shopping in Big Lots. (Before I retired, the local Big Lots store was a great place for me to wander during lunchtime. I could spend 15 minutes there, grab a Diet Coke and a bag of peanuts on the way out, and be refreshed and ready for the afternoon.) Anyway, I was in Big Lots when I saw some aluminum pans in the shape of a Christmas tree. The pans were green in color and really cheap. Good deals are always tempting to me and so I bought all that they had.

As we got closer to Christmas, I decided that I would use those pans. Cake mixes were stirred, pans filled with batter, baking was completed and each cake was decorated. It was a really easy baking project and I had fun making each tree look distinct. (OK, don’t think Martha Stewart-like distinct, think different kinds of sprinkles out of a plastic bottle kind of distinct.) I needed to do something with the cakes and so we decided to go caroling.

As John and I and two friends started out that evening, we didn’t have much of a plan, but we had cake. The first house we visited (unannounced of course), the people met us at the door in PJs and boxers. We sang a carol or two and then presented them with a cake. The reaction was marvelous. Apparently, it had been a tough day in that house and a surprise dessert and serenading were very much appreciated.

We made our way to the next house. Drat – no one was home. Perhaps we should have taken more time in planning this evening!

The third house was empty too.

But, the fourth house was the home of an invalid adult son and his extended family. We sang our hearts out. And, we left two cakes there. The aunt of the young man hugged each one of us, tears running down her cheeks. She said that no one had ever caroled at their house. We (at least I did) teared up too.

We spent the rest of the evening looking for people who would tolerate our singing and appreciate a surprise cake.

It was such a simple thing. Four people singing Christmas carols with cakes made using Big Lot pans and store bought cake mix and frosting. And yet it was one of my favorite evenings that year. The carols weren’t perfect; in some cases we mixed up the verses and the pitch changed from time-to-time. But, it was true Christmas joy.

Do you sing? Can you whistle? How about humming? No matter how you sound, great or not so great, why not use your voice this year in celebrating the gift of God’s love? Sing out at church. Turn on the radio and belt out a chorus or two. Music is a gift of God.

“But I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense And refuge in the day of my trouble.” (Psalm 59:16)

p.s.  If you and I don’t get a chance to sing together here; let’s plan to meet there, in that great heavenly choir!  Love you, Jill

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