The Beauty of December
Blog Limbo (or Limbo Blog)

Traditions

December traditions have changed over the course of my lifetime, but each and everyone has created a wealth of wonderful memories. One of the greatest gifts I have ever received is that every Christmas has been safe, fun, exciting, rich with tradition and abundance, plus I have always been surrounded by people I love.

P_r14alkwjxc70039My second Christmas

For many years, Christmas Eve was the best day of the Holiday festivities. Last minute baking left the kitchen warm and aromatic. Mom would lay out a feast on the table for us to nosh on, and we "pieced" our way through the evening of joy. Freshly baked breads, cakes, cookies, and candies  are among my favorite childhood memories.

Every year mom made each one of u (4 girls!) a new flannel nightgown, which we were allowed to open on Christmas Eve. Mine was usually pink or blue, with ruffled yoke and hem. How I loved the first nights wearings of  that fresh, crisp gown, which was well worn by the next Christmas. 

We'd listen to Christmas songs, or we'd gather around the piano and sing our own carols, always waiting and listening for the sounds of Santa. Later in the evening we'd watch the news on our old black and white TV as the announcer tracked Santa's progress from the North Pole. We went to bed when he warned children the needed to be asleep or Santa might not stop! 

I'm thinking of the years there were 5 of us kids, a house full of noise, laughter, laundry, lights, gifts for the neighbors and baked goods abounding, the piles of packages under the tree, and the general chaos of life--that is what I think of when asked what Christmas means to me. Many traditions have changed through the years, and I can't think of one year that Christmas wasn't full of magic and joy. Riches beyond words, that's the joy of Christmas tradition. 

Comments

Magic and joy . . . yes! That's what Christmastime is all about. You've described the wonder and anticipation and magic perfectly! Riches beyond words, indeed. XO

Your description of joyous childhood Christmases is lovely and heartwarming! I love picturing your mom sewing flannel nightgowns for her daughters and that they were loving and practical gifts. I have to ask, Margene - are those skunk slippers in the foreground of the photo? That is a tradition that should be continued!

Yes, those childhood traditions are hard to beat since they were made when there was still so much wonder about the holidays! My mother made the two of us matching Christmas outfits every year, and I always felt so special wearing an outfit that a grownup was also wearing. Circle skirts with Christmas trees! Velvet dresses with lace trim! Just one of the many things my mother did to make Christmas special, and I see your mother did the same.

What a special person you are to have kept the wonder alive.

I give my kids new pjs for Christmas :) I remember big big feasts on Christmas Eve at my Gram's house that was over flowing with seafood. Lovely reading your traditions.

Magic and joy are the absolute best part of Christmas! The photo is so awesome! And, those skunk slippers - yes, a new tradition!! XO

You evoked so many memories. Flannel nightgowns--my favorite was "my blue heaven"--angels on white puffy clouds against a blue sky. The word ".piecing" to apply to eating snacks and goodies instead of a formal dinner. Grandparents were almost always a part of,the Christmas Eve celebration. Lovely to think back on!

What a lovely post, Margene. I don't remember my mother ever sewing nightgowns for us, but she did one year for her granddaughters -- with matching nighties for their dolls! Traditions change... TRUTH! ;)

I loved that you said "pieced". My family always said that too. We did piece through the days "ruining" our dinners. Ha! Thanks for your memories.

I love this pj tradition!

What a wonderful trip down memory lane, Margene - my childhood Christmases were different in the details (no new nightgowns :-) but the same in the overall warmth and joy of gathering with family. Peace, my friend.

I can just picture your family bustling with excitement on Christmas Eve - you painted the picture perfectly.

Having five siblings sure would spice up the holidays!

You capture the essence of Christmas with wonderful descriptions that evoke such lovely visuals! My mother made all of our clothes when we were young including toys and dolls too. I remember new nightgowns, but not associated with Christmas. That must be more of an American tradition that we were not privy to in Europe. Thanks for sharing your memories.

That scene is so familiar! The tree more so than the skunk slippers! And thank-you for the reminder of watching Santa's route on the black and white t.v.

Wonderful memories-love the new gown each year.

This is so perfectly written, I can see and feel it! The new flannel PJ's and black and white TV are familiar memories! My kids talk nostalgically about their childhood sound of a dial up modem, something kids "nowadays" will never hear...funny how times change.

Beautiful memories, Margene! I hope you have many more opportunities to cherish old memories and create new ones! xoxo

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