SPT - Holiday Feng Shui - Peace


From Lelly - i don't want spt to add to the chaos. quite the opposite - i hope to continue to enjoy it throughout the holidays. to be able to find those moments throughout the season where i choose to be still. the challenge for us this month will hopefully give us an excuse to remember to care for ourselves while we are busy creating amazing holiday memories for all. take deep breaths. channel your chi. don't sacrifice the small, still moments. enjoy them! and photograph them!

  • tuesday, december 2 love
  • tuesday, december 9 joy
  • tuesday, december 16 comfort
  • tuesday, december 23 peace
  • tuesday, december 30 hope

enjoy the season!

Today was my Uncle Charlie's funeral.

Uncle Charlie

He is my Mom's youngest brother. This is a picture of their family in the early 1950's. Uncle Charlie is in the lower left-hand corner and my Mom is standing right behind him.


As a small child I remember him and his 2nd wife Pat coming to see us. I remember that he always made me feel special and I loved it when Pat would come over to see us because she would always let me drink some of her soda. Isn't it funny the things we remember.

Uncle Charlie lived a hard life, but a life he chose. He drifted from place to place for a while and when I was a teenager he came and lived with us for a short time in Washington. And even if my Mom didn't like the way he lived his life she loved him because he was her brother and tried to take care of him and he would have done anything for her - well almost anything, I don't think he could have stopped drinking for anything or anyone.

In the early 1990's he decided that he would rather just live on the streets and for a short time he slept in our yard. I remember one time a friend asking me if we knew there was a homeless guy living in our yard and being so embarrassed to say it was my Uncle. I didn't like him and I didn't like the life he lived.

In 2005 he was found unconscious in the streets. He had been passed out for so long that he had terrible sunburn over 40 percent of his body and the burn was so severe his leg had to be amputated. The alcohol did so much damage to his brain that he suffered from dementia. He spent the last few years of his life in a care facility.


Since Uncle Charlie had served in Vietnam there was a Military Honor Guard at his funeral.





They presented the flag to my Aunt Wanda, his older sister.


It was so touching to watch these young service members do this amazing tribute to a fellow soldier.

My brother was Uncle Charlie's guardian and has been faithful in visiting him, even when Uncle Charlie no longer knew who he was.


So even if a funeral isn't exactly where I wanted to be during the holidays, I was grateful for the opportunity to honor my Uncle. I am grateful that Uncle Charlie can finally be at peace and leave the demons he has lived with behind. I am grateful for my knowledge that life is eternal and the peace in the knowledge that families are forever.


In loving memory of Charles Raymond Berryhill

April 2, 1947 - December 13, 2008

Charles Raymond Berryhill, 61 died Saturday evening, December 13, 2008 at the Scottsdale Village Nursing Home where he had been under Hospice Care. He was born April 2, 1947 in Plantersville, Mississippi to Hazel Christine and James Willis Berryhill. He was a veteran of the Vietnam War. He is survived by a brother James Willis (Sylvia) Berryhill; a sister Wanda (Joe) Drake and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters, Juanita Ann Goulson and Geneva Mary Angle and his Aunt Myrtle and Uncle Lowell Williams who reared him from childhood.


  1. This is simply beautiful and so touching, Lene. The falling snowflakes on your blog background was so fitting and made it all the more peaceful.

    My thoughts are with you . . . and your Uncle Charlie.

    Thank you for posting this today. SPT indeed.

  2. what a life he lived. I am so glad that you could share his life and pay tribute and honor to him. It is good to be thankful in all things and your post made me even more grateful for our military, for those who serve and for the homeless and for my own blessings.

  3. What a nice post. I've been to far too many funerals myself this year. But there is peace in it, too.

  4. i agree with jane - the snow flurries added such wonderful punctuation to your words.

  5. Peace. What a wonderful day to honor your Uncle. I can just imagine him feeling really at peace with your kind words and ability to love him for who he is not what he did. Thank you for sharing.

  6. I am sorry to hear about your uncle....We need to plan a Carlson Reunion......not many left...

    Merry Christmas to you and your family. Thank you for the beautiful card!!!



  7. peace is knowing the gospel plan and knowing that you're uncle charlie has another chance. i have a similar family member. yours is quite a story. thanks for sharing.