Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Memories

Christmas Supper at a friend's house -- awesome!
I was inspired by reading Ellen's blog about what is important to her at Christmas. I find I have redefined my Christmas's over the years. I have very happy memories of Christmas as a child. We didn't have a big family, but my mother made sure we always had a good Christmas. There was a real tree with the big colored lights and tinsel icicles. Santa Claus brought presents on Christmas Eve and I could hardly sleep I was so excited. In fact, at some point during the long night I always had to make a trip to the kitchen for a drink of water. The living room would have been transformed by big mysterious packages piled around the tree and all over the room. One year I ran into a beautiful little dressing table with a ruffled skirt that my mother had carefully hidden at the neighbor's house so I would be surprised. That sight was so magical to me. I don't even remember particular gifts but instead the anticipation of all the beautifully wrapped boxes waiting to be opened. My mother would always give us hints that drove us crazy. And she made chocolate fudge with pecans. I remember the smell of simmering chocolate filling the house. One year I was sure I heard jingle bells on the roof.

I have had a lonely Christmas or two, a sad one when my son was a baby and we had no money and my mother was far away. I felt lost when my mother was in a nursing home and again after she died. I have had some beautiful experiences when I was into church as a teenager. I remember one Christmas Eve when I was gloriously in love with the boy next door and one Christmas Eve when I had my first taste of champagne. I have had many stressful Christmas's when my children were young and I worked full time. I attended a few fancy dress up Christmas parties -- not many.

Now I mostly enjoy decorating and socializing and doing things with the children. I have to confess since we have had to pare down the spending the last few years that I do miss the presents. Not what was in them so much but the excitement of seeing them piled around the tree on Christmas Eve. My brother used to arrive with arms full of professionally wrapped gifts. I have never seen such pretty presents. Now he gives the children gift cards. I have had more time than ever this year. Almost too much time to cook and clean and decorate. The only time I really listen to Christmas music now is in the car with my grandchildren. Mia's favorite is Little Drummer Boy. Jonah and Jill still favor Old Toy Trains by Roger Miller.

I think next year I would like to get back to church and I want to focus on doing something for others, maybe visit the nursing home where my mother stayed for the last year. Someday I would like to spend Christmas where it snows and where there are pine trees all aound.

I love entertaining on Christmas Eve, but I got over cooking on Christmas Day a long time ago. I do enjoy the times when Roger and I are invited to my sister-in-law's house on Christmas Day for a beautiful meal with her crystal and china and a perfectly cooked prime rib. We have also have some great Christmas dinners at Roger's sister, Mary's, house. Last year my friends had a nice English roast beef and Yorkshire pudding at their house on Christmas night. Aaron challenged Jonah and Jaime to each eat a Brussels sprout. That was funny. Jonah choked his down in one bite so Jaime had to eat one, too. Torture. (I love Brussels sprouts.)

I have been blessed with many wonderful Christmas memories. I wish that for us all. God bless us everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Don't wait until next year to get back to church, how about today! Plus we have Christmas Eve services this week. I always feel so good after leaving church on Sunday and nothing will ever make you feel as good as doing something for others. Start adding to your Christmas memories now, don't wait.

    Wishing you a wonderful holiday season.