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Old 12-23-2006, 03:34 PM   #1
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Tis the season of--

pecan pie
remembering Christmas' past &
family dinners

Any memories you care to share?


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Old 12-23-2006, 03:59 PM   #2
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At Sea

Spending several Xmas's at sea with the Coast Guard.

Had a friend from Vermont. His parents sent him a package with the 12 days theme. Twelve little packages to be opened on the appropriate day. The whole thing packed in fall colored leaves. Each day he would read the clue for that day's package in the morning to us. All day we would try to guess what it was. Then, in the evening we would gather around like a bunch of little kids and he would open the present.

It was like we all were getting something. It was an amazing Xmas away from home.



Jerry and Avis
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Old 12-23-2006, 04:24 PM   #3
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Holiday in the Airstream

This year will be a holiday season to remember. Our first Christmas in the trailer. Being away from home, and making new friends and helping out in our new community. Cooking a holiday dinner, decorating the Airstream and enjoying a low-key, and fabulous holiday season!

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Old 12-23-2006, 05:02 PM   #4
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The heavenly:Our second son, three months old at Christmas, cast as the Baby Jesus, nestled in the hay in a wooden manger, Max standing near as Joseph, I cast as Mary for the candlelight church Christmas Eve service. And Jordan didn't cry!
The hectic: Susie, our youngest, then thirteen, after begging to hang the old family ornaments just given us by her grandmother, holding the box of ornaments and stretching from the ladder to reach a branch, overreached, pitched off the ladder, into the tree, bringing it down, and fracturing all by two of the old loved glass balls. Now we laugh
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Old 12-23-2006, 05:41 PM   #5
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Riding around town to look at the lights as a child. That was back when only C-7 and C-9 bulbs existed. No minature chasing lights, no pre-formed light ropes depicting trees and snowflakes, no huge plastic blow-up figures, only simple strings lining the eaves and arranged on the shrubbery. My heart would just sing with the colors.
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Old 12-23-2006, 05:56 PM   #6
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Actually the Christmas' I remember were austere; I grew up in KS on a farm. I remember lots of gift socks and underwear my family did not believe in frivolous (non-useful) gifts and gift giving was not a big deal. There was a lot of religous activity. Christmas was an emotional religous time.

My grandparents never heard of Harry & David Times and my family (what is left and the new additions) have definitely changed.
Kistler & Brenda

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Old 12-23-2006, 06:18 PM   #7
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Great thread!

Originally Posted by Kistler
remembering Christmas' past & family dinnersAny memories you care to share?Kistler
Oh wow, I wish that as a kid I had appreciated good food, back then it was eat as fast as you can and when you are officially excused from the table run off and play with the other kids and your new stuff!

Our best family meals were made by my great grandma who lived with us until the 70s. Her mother and grandmother were cooks in their own restaurants and boardinghouses so she could really cook up a storm!

Homemade fruit cake stirred up in a huge wooden bowl we all took turns helping with the spoon(we hoarded that cake and nobody would dream of giving it away!) , peach cobbler, coconut cake with lemon curd, sweet potato pie, cookies...

Meals this was every thanksgiving/christmas/new years
turkey, ham, roast beef, yorkshire pudding, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, au gratin potatoes, mac and cheese, parkerhouse rolls, some kind of veggie, cranberries...above listed desserts. I don't understand the 3 kind of potatoes thing, but we did it, and I still do it, and everyone says why 3 kinds of potatoes, but they eat them.
Steph in MI Air# 6996-
I Hockeytown USA!!
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Old 12-23-2006, 06:49 PM   #8
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MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL,,, large first generation Italian family Christmas dinner,, with 45 or more in attendance,, aunts,, uncles, cousins,,second cousins,, food set out twice,, then desert,, Midnight Mass with my aunt Pauline from Romania,, delicious cookies with fruit or nut fillings,,, an amazing spread,,, lots of love,, lots of laughter,, very very dear to my heart memories,, and now to cut out Airstream cookies,, best wishes to you,, donna
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Old 12-23-2006, 06:54 PM   #9
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When less was more

We had a single electric candolier in each window that was visible from the street. The only window with more was the living room window, where my parents had a 5 light set of the poisonous bubble lights. We had a 4 foot artificial tree in the living room, with two strings of the C7 lights.
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Old 12-23-2006, 06:55 PM   #10
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My parents took in foster children, usually temporarily but a few ended up with us from about four years old or so until they finished school. Usually at Christmas it was just the family at home but in 1957 there were a lot of kids needing homes and we ended up with I think 12 or 14 foster children coming in through Christmas eve day, along with a family of four kids who had been with us for a while. My uncle worked at a large department store so he, the store manager and my Dad headed down there late in the evening, picked out a gift or two for every one, brought them home and my Mom, oldest sister and grandmother wrapped them - I remember walking in on them and being put to work - I learned there really was a Santa that night, just a different one than I’d thought till then. Christmas morning was bedlam as many of these kids had never had a real Christmas present and when they came up for breakfast it seemed like half the livingroom was covered with gifts. We lived a block from church and everyone was marched down the street to sit through what I recall to be the longest mass I'd ever sat through and I’m sure for some they’d never been to church. Then the walk home, and I still remember vividly the incredible ripple of excitement that went through the house and the scared faces of the little kids wondering if Santa had maybe not known that they were there. The presents weren’t much, particularly by today’s standards, but to those kids they were the best thing ever. We learned the true meaning of Christmas that year. Many of the gifts that had originally been bought for us were re-tagged for some of the kids who were particularly in need. My Dad would sit at the tree and pick a gift, call out the name, make a big thing about it being From Santa and I remember one little guy bursting into tears when his name was called and he didn't quite know what to do - that still brings a tear to my eyes when I think of it. That year has always set the marker for me for what a real Christmas can be.

When I think of Christmas I think of how much my parents and grandmother put into it - they believed it was a time for magic to happen and that year they made it work for a whole bunch of us.

Merry Christmas.
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Old 12-23-2006, 07:19 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Sugarfoot
Riding around town to look at the lights as a child. That was back when only C-7 and C-9 bulbs existed. No minature chasing lights, no pre-formed light ropes depicting trees and snowflakes, no huge plastic blow-up figures, only simple strings lining the eaves and arranged on the shrubbery. My heart would just sing with the colors.
I still put the old C's on my tree. I see that they are offering a version of them in the stores now...calling them retro's.
Neil and Lynn Holman
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Kirk Creek, Big Sur, Ca. coast.

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Old 12-23-2006, 07:21 PM   #12
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Airforce brat, father radar tech, posted to remote locations. Our Forces family, were often our only family and Christmas was no different.

Will always remember on Christmas Eve, we (young uns) were all taken to the radar tower where we watched Santas sleigh, as a green blip, on the screen coming closer and closer to our house.

Imagine, young children racing out the door to get home and go to bed.Very special, I will cherish those memories forever.

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Old 12-23-2006, 07:59 PM   #13
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The Tree Trimming

Great story Barry!
For me, the greatest memory is the tree trimming party at my parent's house. They started a tradition when my older sister was in high school. She would invite some of her friends over to have a party and put up the folk's tree. I was about 5 at the time. The party continued every year and about 5 years later when my brother was in high school, his friends took over the tree duties. My Dad never put one light or one ornament on the tree. He would just sit and watch, and then when it was done (or so we thought) he would proclaim "it needs more lights". This would sometimes result in a trip to the local store for another string of lights. Well that continued until a few years later, when my junior high school friends started coming to help out my brother's friends. It turned into quite a party over the years. We kept it going and had some of our school friends there with their kids. Every year when we turned out the lights in the room, and turned on the tree, everyone would chorus,along with my Dad, "It needs more lights". I am 54 and one of my high school friends has not missed a year yet. There are only a few of us now, and we lost Dad this year. But, I know tomorrow night at Mom's house, with my brother and his kids and my sister there and of course my old friend from high school, when we turn out the lights and turn on the tree lights..... we'll all say it one more time.
What a great time of year. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and New Year to all of you. Ron
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Old 12-23-2006, 09:31 PM   #14
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Barry, Thank you for the gift of your story. It's one that we will share tomorrow, to remind us of the humbling experience Christmas should be. In our family our gifts to each other this year are donations to the local CASA--Court Appointed Special Advocates--an invaluable resource for children who have parents who are unable to care for them.
I love remembering Midnight Mass, new PJs and books under the tree, celebrating in the tropics with "Mele Kalikimaka"--but most of all I remember the hugs, laughter, and being aware that we were a very lucky family with parents who thought we were the most important people on earth, and who were able to feed and care for us.
If only all children could have that profound feeling of security.
Best wishes for a new year that brings hope for peace and health to the suffering children in warring countries, and for the many who are in need here at home.

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