Christmas Traditions

Friday, December 23, 2011

Feeling kind of nostalgic today!
Do you ever get that way around the Holidays???

Below, is a post I wrote for my previous blog in 2008.
Reading it brings back sweet memories for me --- thought I would share it!

December 17, 2008

I think that at this time of year, more than any other, I am mindful of my childhood. Wonderful memories of Christmas traditions abound, transporting me back in time. A much simpler time, when I had few worries or demands, and life was predictable. As a child, Christmas was very predictable for our family. I think about my own children, as we try to establish traditions. It has been hard, and traditions have changed every few years it seems, due to moving or loved ones that have passed during my children's lives.

My mom was one of seven children and my dad was one of eight. Both grandparent's homes would be overflowing with family gathering at Christmas, but they never seemed crowded, rather warm and cozy.

On Christmas Eve night, we celebrated at Grandma B.'s house. During the hour ride home, I would lie crossways in the back window of dad's big Ford sedan, searching the sky for Santa. (This of course, was before seat belts! ) An hour seemed like an eternity as a child, especially one filled with anticipation of gifts to come. My dad would give updates from the front seat as he drove ahead, and I would try to take shallow breaths, so that I didn't fog up the rear window. I didn't want to miss Santa and his reindeer, should they happen upon our path.

Before going to bed, we were allowed to pick one present from under the tree to open. I had the uncanny knack of never choosing a cool, fun toy. Rather my choice was always unwrapped to reveal PJ's or some other piece of clothing. I have to laugh about it now, but at the time it was far from funny.

Gifts from my grandparents were predictable, as well. My Grandma B. gave us each a small box, about the size of a shoebox, filled with little items that she shopped for and saved throughout the year. She put a lot of thought in each item. From Grandma M., we each got two pairs of underwear, but they were good brands. :) When I was young I didn't appreciate them as well as I probably should have. But as I grew older and started buying my own, my gratitude increased.

For a moment, I find myself sad, that I can't be young again, and go back to those predictable, yet wonderful and magical Christmases past. I want to be six, and climb in the back of that car window one more time, and worry about nothing but Santa. And those that I loved, my dear grandparents, are gone now. Their homes are no longer the same, though still standing. But then, I think of my own children, and how I want them to have wonderful family traditions, that I hope they reflect fondly on. I think of all the happy memories we have already had as a family and look forward to future ones. I am then glad that time moves on.

Our preacher shared this verse in a sermon on TRADITIONS...

"Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation." Joel 1:3

{Pictures for Post Borrowed from Google Images}


  1. I remember my beloved Grandma Annie taking the curves fast in her old Pontiac so that my little sister and I were thrown side-to-side in the back seat, squealing with delight the whole time! We're much safer now with seat belts but they don't give us near the memories do they?!

    I'm sure you have some very wonderful traditions for your kids. We have a Christmas Eve party and the kids get to open their gifts from their grandparents and us. Brianna's girls are going to think it's already Christmas bz they get to open gifts from their great grandparents and grammie and grampie! I look forward to Christmas Eve almost more than Christmas. For Christmas we have a brunch and my husband makes omelets. We just started this about five years ago but it's a big hit even with our married kids! We're lucky they live close enough to participate. Next year is looking to be much, much different with kids moving on. We'll see though.

    Merry Christmas my friend!

  2. I have so many wonderful memories of Christmas as a child...with all my extended family. I treasure those memories!
    I laughed about the car ride home...I had those too, but I hid down by the bump on the floor in the Santa wouldn't see me being up so late!
    Merry Christmas to you and your family!!

  3. Wonderful memories that you shared. I, too, have many memories from my growing up years. I only hope the memories I have made with my own kids will be cause for them to reflect as they get older. I do love a tradition. :) Merry Christmas!

  4. Rhonda, Thank you for sharing these dear memories. I loved hearing about them. I relate so well to the underwear and not appreciating it 'til now. I love the predictable things. I remember receiving LifeSavor books from my Grandparents, and actually looking forward to them at one point. The other side was so different. They were so poor, that their gifts were priceless: prayer. Kathi


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