Updated: Dec 26, 2018
In 2010 someone started an Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories. I’ve tried to find the original post…I think it originally came out from Geneabloggers, but it’s no longer there. The idea was that you would write on a different topic each day from December 1 - 24. I got thinking about it at church yesterday as we lit the first candle for Advent. When I updated my website in 2011, I didn’t include those posts, but luckily, I had copied them into a word processing journal with the intent of putting them into a book for my children at some point. The book hasn’t appeared, but I certainly enjoyed the memories as I read through them.
Since today is only December 3rd, it’s not too late to start. I can’t find the prompts online, but here’s what I have in my journal. Just write about your memories on the topic.
December 1 - The Christmas Tree
December 2 - Holiday Foods
December 3 - Christmas Tree Ornaments
December 4 - Christmas Cards
December 5 - Outdoor Decorations
December 6 - Santa Claus
December 7 - Holiday Parties
December 8 - Christmas Cookies
December 9 - Decorations
Next week I’ll give you the next week of prompts.
Here is my December 1st entry about the Christmas Tree.
When I was young, Santa decorated our Christmas Tree. Dad would bring in the tree on Christmas Eve and put the lights on. My parents always had friends and family in on Christmas Eve and the children were sent off to bed early. One year when I was probably six or seven, my grandmother came up and laid across the bottom of my bed to rest. I woke when my grandfather came up to get her and heard him say, "Sally, we just finished trimming the tree and it’s time to go home.” Did I hear that right? Santa didn’t decorate the tree?Because I had a younger sister, the tradition continued for a number of years, and even though I knew, it was always exciting to see the tree for the first time on Christmas morning.
I kept a similar tradition for many years with my children. The difference was, that I sang in the church choir and didn’t get home on Christmas Eve (morning) until about 1:00 a.m. My husband brought the children home from the 8:00 service, put them to bed, and after they went to sleep started the decorating, but it was always 2 or 3 a.m. before we finished. Needless to say, the children didn’t sleep in on Christmas, so eventually we decided to help Santa by decorating our own tree.
But it wasn’t just decorating the tree that was important. We had to pick out the perfect tree. For many years that meant a trip to the Christmas Tree Farm to cut down our tree. With everyone wrapped up in snow suits this became a party with family and friends. Upon arrival, we jumped on the flatbed truck and were pulled by a tractor up to the cutting area. An argument usually ensued about whose turn it was to pick out the tree, but usually with everyone’s concurrence, a tree was selected, cut down and dragged back to where the flatbed which would take us back to our cars. Time for tailgating. Out would come the hot chocolate, Chex mix, cookies and other goodies to be shared with family and friends before driving back home, the tree, securely tied to the roof of the car.
I always claimed that I would NEVER have an artificial tree...never say never. Now that we live in Florida and travel back to Connecticut for two weeks at Christmas time, a live tree just isn’t practical. I love to decorate for Christmas, and that includes a large tree. My husband pulled it out last night while I was at Chorale rehearsal, so I can spend the next few days decorating it. My lack of mobility (due to foot surgery) will cause it to take more time than usual, but as I put each of the ornaments on, they bring back wonderful memories of Christmas’ past.
How much fun it was to re-read this. Just a coincidence that I again had foot surgery this year and am rolling around on a knee walker again. I’m so glad I have this to share. What were your traditions? Why not try to write about your family traditions. If you don’t get every day written you can continue it next year.
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