Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Christmas Memories by Patricia Forsythe


There is something about the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas that make me very nostalgic.  I think about holiday seasons when I was growing up, about the family members we saw every year and the fun we had together.  We had a small house with no central heating, so we all had to hang out together in the living room where the heater was located, dreading the moment when we would have to dash down the frigid hallway to our icy bedrooms, rapidly change into our pajamas, and jump into bed – also cold for a while.   There were church Christmas plays, nylon mesh bags or stockings with an orange at the bottom and lots of hard Christmas candy, and new toys.  One year, we actually strung popcorn and cranberries to make an old-fashioned tree.  That took forever and the effect was less than stellar.  The weather was always cold, and sometimes we had snow.  All of the older relatives who made those times so much fun are gone now, but they’ll always live in my memory. 
I also miss the days when my children were little, of Christmas Eve dinners with my in-laws, of redirecting the attention of a curious toddler enthralled with the Christmas tree, of helping them choose thoughtful gifts for each other, and watching them open their presents.  I’ll always treasure those memories and look forward to making more with my grandchildren.
So now that I’ve steeped us all in nostalgic memories, I’d like to say Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah, or whatever greeting you would like to hear. 
How about you?  What are your favorite holiday memories?
Patricia Forsythe is the author of many romances, both traditionally and electronically published.  Her current release is in the Sweet Christmas Kisses 2 anthology.  Her most recent Harlequin Heartwarming was Her Lone Cowboy, published in June 2015, and there are more books on the way.

 

 

 

23 comments:

  1. I'm with you, Patricia. I'm a big cry baby this time of the year. The memories of past Christmas traditions fill my heart with both joy and sadness. The people who are no longer there to share the joy makes it difficult at times. One of my favorite things to do on Christmas Eve is to pull out the old photo albums. I do it every year.

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    1. That's what I need to do -- organize the family photos into albums. Right now, I just have piles of old photos. Merry Christmas to you and your family, and happy memories.

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  2. I have so many fond memories of Christmastime as well! We always did something fun as a family over Christmas. Everyone got to choose something. Sometimes it was going downtown Chicago to see the Marshall Fields windows or to a movie or bowling, depending on who was doing the choosing! I hope I am making the same kind of memories for my own kids :)

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    1. Your family Christmas memories sound fun. It's surprising the things kids remember. Something you didn't think was that important is something they cherish. Hope you have a festive Christmas.

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  3. An excellent post. Back in Connecticut, we had a furnace located in our living room, the only source of heat through a large grate in the floor. I can’t remember ever being cold in that house, maybe because my bedroom was only 5 feet away from the grate. Some of my happiest memories were when I was very young, and we had Christmas Eve with my father’s family. My uncle Emil dressed as Santa and everyone sat around singing and playing harmonicas, guitars and banjos. Christmas Day was spent with my mother’s family where we did the same, adding a piano, accordion and mandolin.

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    1. Oh, that sounds like fun. We have no musical talent in our family so that kind of thing never happened. Hope you have a wonderful holiday, Marion.

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  4. Patricia, what a lovely post. I'm all choked up thinking about some of my own memories. I loved my stocking. That orange in the bottom, lifesavers, and candy canes! We didn't get candy like kids do now so it was so exciting. It seems like candy is everywhere and for any occasion nowadays, which takes a bit of the special out of it, I think. And white Christmases in north Idaho with my dad's family where we would g skiing and sledding. My dad would even hook up a horse-drawn sleigh on my grandparents' ranch! So much fun.

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    1. Those are sweet memories. A horse-drawn sleigh? Oh, I would have loved that.

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  5. Oh, Patricia, you've tapped right into what I've been dealing with for a month. It isn't sadness, because I know how lucky I am to have had my wonderful family, and my husband's family, who are as dear to me as mine, but God, I miss them! I guess nostalgia is the right word because, like Jill, I keep bursting into tears. I also miss the years when my grandchildren were small and they were so excited about Christmas. I always got the tallest tree we could fit in the house and the kids used to just sit in front of it and absorb the wonder. (I'm sure a lot of their attention was on what was under the tree, too.) I hope those memories are as golden for them as mine are for me. I'd love to have all of you around my tree this Christmas. Thanks, Pat. Good memories.

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    1. I'm sure your grandchildren have fond memories of those Christmases. Have a Merry Christmas.

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  6. Memories are what makes Christmas so special. I remember the first Christmas play I was in. I was not an angel, but one of the wiseman because we didn't have enough tall boys. :-) And I'll never forget singing Silent Night. Thanks for a journey back, Patricia.

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    1. You're very welcome. And speaking of singing Silent Night, I just remembered I used to be able to sing it in English, Spanish, and German. Can't remember the Spanish and German words now, but those are more wonderful memories. Merry Christmas.

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  7. Oh, how I love your post! We're heading to Texas next week to spend Christmas with all three sons, a sweet daughter-in-law and a very mischievous five-year old grandson. One of my sons always wanted to sleep under the Christmas tree, so it became a family pre-Christmas Eve tradition. I wonder when my grandson will want to imitate his uncle?

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    1. That sounds like so much fun. I've got a five-year-old grandson like that. I wonder if he'll want to sleep under the tree. A friend of mine told me that her whole family sleeps under and around the tree on Christmas Eve -- an unusual family tradition. Merry Christmas.

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  8. That post certainly made me feel nostalgic, Patricia, but it made me smile, too.

    Merry Christmas to you, your family and loved ones!

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    1. Thanks, Kate. The merriest of holidays to you, to.

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  9. More books on the way! Best news ever.

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    1. Thanks, Pam! Merry Christmas to you and your family.

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  10. I think I was there in your childhood. Thanks for the memory bump, and Merry Christmas.

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    1. Merry Christmas to you, too! And a productive 2016.

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  11. Patti, I don't know how I missed popping in here yesterday. It was a busy day. But I loved Christmas as a kid. My mom made us clothes and I always got books. In our small town I don't know where she found the latest books, but she did. We mostly shopped from the Sears Catalogue. When the Christmas edition came, my sister and I spent hours looking at all of the things we knew our Santa could never afford.

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    1. The Sears catalogue was our shopping mall, too. We loved it. Thanks for taking the time to stop by and Merry Christmas.

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  12. Going to my grandparents house on Christmas day. My Nannie would have all of our favorite foods ready to eat. Granddaddy would be, well, Granddaddy. So much fun was had in that house, my Aunt who lived next door would come over, they are all gone now and I wish they could have lived long enough to have seen my cousin's kids and my sister's kids. But my Nannie knew Elizabeth was coming, but she died in September before she was born in December, that has been 32 years now. We have made new memories now at our house for my niece and nephews. I hope one day they will look back and love the memories too.

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