Years ago when we lived in McKinney, Texas, on a nice fall day, I went to a garage sale and found this really lovely white ceramic basket.  I snatched it up with the intent of filling it with an arrangement of Christmas greenery and flowers for our dining room table that coming Christmas. Well, days and months got away from me and a year later, when I was having a garage sale of my own, I added the basket to all the items to be sold, resigning myself to the fact that if I hadn’t filled it yet, I probably never would.  That morning at our garage sale, a sweet acquaintance whose name was Martha Pilkington dropped by to see what we had for sale, and she picked up the basket.  I told her of all of my good, but unfulfilled intentions for the basket.  She thought it was a really nice piece and she bought it.  I was really glad she did because she was super creative and I knew it had found a good home.  

Fast forward to December of that year… 

Tom and I and our three young children had been asked to do a Christmas program for spectators and shoppers on the Downtown McKinney Square. It was a very cold, windy day, and we sang outside in front of the McKinney Courthouse for about a half hour to a group of people whose number you could count on one and a half hands.  Martha Pilkington was in the audience.  When we were finished, (and we were glad to be finished,) Martha invited us to come to her car.  As she opened the back door and stooped over to get something out of the back seat, I began to realize what was happening, and tears welled up in my eyes.  There in her hands was the white ceramic basket filled with the most beautiful arrangement of Christmas greenery and flowers and pinecones and ornaments – so much prettier than I ever even imagined it.  She handed it to us and said “Merry Christmas!”

I will never forget that act of kindness, thoughtfulness, and generosity.  It endeared me to Martha from that day forward, and 30 years later, I still think of her with deep fondness and love, and it still makes me cry!  Her example of giving still lives with me and during the hustle and bustle of the holidays, I always try to do some “white ceramic basket” type of service for someone else.  

As I got the basket out this year to use once again, I thought of Martha, and I felt this would be a story worth sharing.  It is one of our family’s most cherished Christmas memories.  I hope Martha’s story inspires you to do an act of “white ceramic basket” type of service, this year.  It’s not too late!

We want to wish you all a very, Merry Christmas & the happiest New Year ever!  

May the blessings of Jesus, our Savior, go with you and attend all you do!


With love and gratitude,

Andrea Brett & and all the Brett Family