Inge had a way of always putting the best forward. A Danish-American living in California, she always found a positive way to view a challenging situation.
She fell off a ladder once. Broke her arm and sustained multiple bruises. The fact that she fell from a ladder while decorating her house for Christmas might have made the situation extra challenging. Who wants to go through Christmas battered and bruised? But it didn’t stop Inge from being cheerful. Her daughter is my good friend, and it was one of the things we marveled about: both our mothers’ capacity for seeing the positives. Both women had been through tough times, but came out the other end of it with joyfulness.
Inge also collected Nisser – the tiny elf-people that visit people’s homes. Not surprisingly, she collected the kind, cheerful Nisser, the ones you may see in Scandinavian homes at Christmas.
Inge died a few years ago, and her daughter has inherited some of the Nisser. So they will be visiting her own home this Advent and Christmas, a fact which makes my friend very happy.
(Yes, I know the ones in these photos are dolls. The real Nisser are usually invisible.)
But my friend warns that the “drille Nisser” – like the one who made my family’s appliances break down recently — could still come out on Christmas Eve! We are advised to leave out a bowl of sweet porridge for them the night before – preferably with lots of cinnamon.
This post is dedicated to the memory of Inge, and to all who take joy in Christmas.