The Shiniest Star(s)

Some of you know that I have been selling vintage items online since the early 2000s. As I was photographing one of two identical copies of the 1950s book The Shiniest Star illustrated by Charlot Byj, Wayne stopped talking to me mid-sentence, came over and said: “Hey! I know that book! I remember reading that when I was little!” His face was completely lit up as he picked up the book and turned the pages. He remembered the gold foil star on the cover, too. I was charmed to see him transform from a man in his 60s to a wide-eyed six year old.


I was of course forbidden to ever sell copy #2! Also, Wishy seemed to be mesmerized by the woodland creatures featured within.

Later on I was feeling gloomy thinking about the state of healthcare and how the upcoming changes for my age and status as self-employed make affordable healthcare further out of my reach. Rather than brooding I decided to do a little more decorating. I stood on a step-ladder hanging little string lights in our sun room when I saw Wishy standing not on the window sill but on his tippy-toes on the edge of the window pane in front of me! He was looking up at me watching! I can’t recall the last time I laughed so suddenly and hard; it was yet another delightful sight to me that caught me off guard. Wayne of course heard me and had to see what was going on but Wishy had left his perch.

To me, these unexpected bright, magical moments characterize the spirit of the Christmas season.



I’m so grateful for all of the shiny stars in my life and world!


5 thoughts on “The Shiniest Star(s)

  1. Hi Averyl, Just want to let you know that I am reading your blogs even though I don’t always reply. Loved Wayne’s childhood moment. We all have them and it’s amazing how wonderful they make you feel. I also like your little friend, Wishy, who has his own personality and is obviously very curious. Those of us who truly love animals have a keen sense of their intelligence and an appreciation of their individual traits.

    Very thoughtful that your minister is adapting the wine for grape juice. Probably better for everyone anyway. Never understood why it had to be wine. The Mormons use water and real bread. It’s all symbolic.

    We received your Christmas card on Saturday. Thank you very much. A beautiful vintage touch. It is on the front hall table where I walk past numerous times a day.

    Not sure when I’ll get to our cards. Waiting for my daughter to take the children to see Santa so I can include that photo. Soon I hope.

    She will be arriving with the children tomorrow for a quick visit. Jim’s aunt who lives in assisted living here in Naples, is not doing well so Michelle is coming to see her. Returns to Chicago on Sunday.

    We’ve had a couple of visits from the aunt’s daughter, Jim’s cousin, and there may be more family members coming to visit before Christmas. Lots of prep before they arrive and afterwards, getting ready for the next group.

    That’s it for now. Got to get busy.

    Take care and God bless you and Wayne. Sylvia Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Sylvia,

      I am sorry to hear about Jim’s aunt. It’s nice that she is living close to you so that you can visit with her and that she has family coming to see her.

      I did not know that about Mormon communion, thanks for sharing that.

      We’ll understand if we don’t receive a card before Christmas because you really are quite busy! However, I’m looking forward to seeing the Santa pic, too cute.

      It’s so true what you said about animals having individual traits. All of my guinea pigs had unique personalities, quirks and charms. I never thought chipmunks were also “individuals” until I started to get to know them this summer and fall. I was discussing Wishy’s curiosity with Wayne and that it speaks to having a certain kind of intelligence. (I still miss little miss Chippie!)

      XO Averyl


  2. I also recall the book. I have not thought about it for years, but you brought back a flood of memories. Also I am happy that your church was able to make Advent even more special for you.

    Liked by 1 person

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