Friday, December 22, 2006

Christmas Past

My Christmas memories fall into two categories: First as a child; Second as an adult.

As a kid my favorite memories don't revolve around gifts received like I thought they might. When my Grandmother (Dad's mom) would come up and spend a couple of weeks at Christmas time it was always special since we didn't get to see her very often. My Grandfather died when Dad was 13 so I haven't met him yet. Mom's parents lived nearby as did her sister and brother & their families. Every Christmas morning after doing the gifts mom fixed a breakfast feast fit for kings. Later we would go over to my Grandparents for more gifts, sure, but mainly FOOD!!! My mother was a fabulous cook but when you sampled my Grandmother's meals you knew where she learned it from! We would have tons of food not to mention pies and deserts. It was always fun getting together with all my cousins too. Seemed like there must have been 40 or 50 people in their tiny old house with all it's nooks and crannies although I know it couldn't have been more then 20 or 30!

The Christmas after Dad died was kind of a null and void time. He died in early January so that whole year was cold and detached. The next Christmas felt feeling, no emotion...just trying to get through the Holidays. His death was still a raw nerve. It wasn't nearly as rough for me or my brother as it was for mom. She never really was the same after that, which is understandable. By the next year my Beautiful Wife and I were married. That started my adult Christmas journey.

I was very lucky. When we married her two boys were 5 and 6 so I didn't have to wait years to have the fun of being a Christmas Dad! Since they were boys I was able to dive right into slot cars, trains, footballs, bikes, video games and most important: Hot Wheels!! We now have enough Hot Wheels to supply a small country! I've got to tell those of you who are waiting for children (Laura!) THAT'S when the fun begins!!! I got the biggest thrill seeing the magic and wonder through their eyes...much more than the thrill I got at their age. When our two girls were born I got to experience it all over again but through a girl's eyes.

Undoubtedly the best Christmas ever was my mom's last Christmas. She only lived about 10 minutes away but we convinced her to spend the night with us Christmas Eve. She came over about 5:00 and we did a nice dinner, read the Christmas Story out of Luke, watched Rudolph, etc. After the girls went to bed she helped us with all the last minute 'preparation' then she slept in their room with them. She said it was really neat being with them and seeing all the excitement. I didn't realize it but she hadn't spent a Christmas Eve and Morning with little ones in years. That was also the Christmas I got my wife the place settings in the pattern she had been wanting for years. It was service for 12 with big plates, little plates, saucers, cups, glasses, some large platters, a gravy boat, a large soup tureen and various other accessories. I had it all wrapped up in about 12 different boxes. That's the first time I ever remember catching her totally off guard! She was blown away. It was cold and foggy that year, didn't get out of the mid 20's, had some icing problems, so we just hunkered down and feasted/napped (wake up, repeat) all day. Mom died the next June. That was a very special Christmas.

What are some of your favorite memories?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is such a great post.

I have always LOVED Christmas. All my life. I've sort of been waiting to "grow out of it", but so far it hasn't happened. (Same with my love for snow, which is nothing other than childlike.) My transition from "kid Christmas" to "adult Christmas" is still taking place. It's been a little bit rocky but I am growing to love a new kind of Christmas and hopefully as you mentioned children will make that better than ever.

3:20 PM, December 22, 2006  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home