As I look around, decorating every corner of our home, I stopped to think about the things that I remember most of the things that shaped my happy thoughts of the Christmas season. We all groan at how much earlier we see things go up in the stores, and how quickly we see commercials on TV, but, all in all, so many of us want to decorate weeks before the turkey is cooked for Thanksgiving. It isn't about the commercialism of the season for so many of us. It is the reason for the season that we love to be reminded of, with all of our halls decked out to celebrate Christ's birth. Oh yes, we love our favorite snowmen displays, and our collection of Santa's, but it is the sweet reminder of a new born babe in a manger that has us fascinated. To know that God sent his only Son to die for us on the cross, that this lil babe in the manger loved us so much to do so, is just simply wonderful! For me, it is the ease in which I believe it. No question about it, no thoughts of, oh there is just no way. He is the way, the Light and the Truth, and I do not question that. I just remember playing with the manger scene as a child. Just as I look at it now, set up on my hutch. It makes me smile.
Another thought occurred to me yesterday. (every once in a while, my thoughts run deep!) Who are the artists that bring out the happy memories, the minute you hear them sing the carols? I remember Burl Ives, Andy Williams, Johnny Mathis and Bing Crosby the most. Probably because I can picture in my mind, changing out the records on the player, and looking at the album covers. It isn't the holiday season til I hear them sing! I also remember getting so antsy to watch Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and Frosty the Snowman. This was back in the days when it was going to be on once that year, so you better not miss it. Now of course, you can let you kids overdose on it, with the DVD in your collection. It was the once a year showing of those movies that made it special.
Ahh, now there is the collectibles. I know I have seen, those brass, or fake brass angels with propellers and candles that fascinated me for hours on end back in the old days. You can find them at the dollar store now, and it brings a smile to my face. We had those holiday candles that were about 4 inches tall, in angels, snowmen, Santa's etc. Playing with them, and making a Christmas parade with them was a fun time. Mom also had this plastic Santa sleigh with the reindeer. I wonder if I will ever see one of those again. It was no more than 12 inches long, and you could pop the reindeer off the "harness". It was kind of like playing with my farm set that I loved to do so much. Now, I know your thinking, those are collectibles? They would be if my Mom still had them! Long banished to the trash can. Oh well, that is why we hold our memories so dear. I also remember the "retro" items we had, which are so hot now. I saw a few things in a catalog the other day, that even if I am not into retro, I would like to have, as a reminder. It was a tablecloth with Santa faces on it. I may not use it in a display, but it would be a treasured reminder of my childhood.
Ok, who doesn't remember this?? Waiting with anticipation for the Sears Christmas wish list catalog to arrive? Did you fight over it with your siblings? What fun! (the shopping, not the sibling fights!) How long a list could get very quickly from that catalog. It must have been the dreaded arrival of every parent! And, to keep us occupied as the days went by like a snail, being handed the crayons and Christmas coloring books? Remember? I loved that so much! I could color those scenes for hours. Kids now? Hmph.... I think some parents are lucky they can get the kids to go out and build a snowman or go sledding nowadays!
Another memory was that of making up a big pot of oatmeal, apple carrot mash for my horse. She needed that warmth in her tummy! When your water bucket freezes at Christmas time in NH, I am betting that tasted yummy and warmed her up. A special treat, when combined with her carrots in her stocking, that were brought by Santa the night before.
Then there is, of course, the holiday baking. Christmas sugar cookies! Oh my!!! That is on the top of my list of favorite memories. In the kitchen with Grammie and Mom, waiting on the cookies to be rolled out and cutting them, and sprinkling them with the colored sugars. The cookies were great, but it is the memory of baking with Grammie and Mom that I hold dear.
I hope this trip down my memory lane makes you sit and think of some things that may have been forgotten, but now are brought back to you, and puts a smile on your face. I will be getting my decorating down today, and will take photos to post tomorrow. While you wait though, please post your favorite Christmas memory. You can, as always, also email it to me instead. I will be sending a free pattern to one lucky winner!
Now, go break out that tree and get to decorating! I would love to post your pics too!