Wednesday, December 10, 2008

christmas tags

I've been tagged...by Trish over at 'Nana's Living the Dream'. What that means is that she would like me to play along by listing 'Seven Random Things About Me'. So I'm thinking Christmas tag might be kind of fun!

Here are seven random memories I have of Christmas past (in no particular order)…

1. Oh...the excitement and the anticipation before Christmas was almost more than I could stand as a child. And after all the waiting...what a let-down to wake up sick on Christmas morning. And that happened more than once!

2. Some of my favorite gifts in my early years...Tinkertoys, china tea set, white figure skates, and a Monopoly game. My first Bible was a Christmas gift (that I still have)...as was my first wristwatch.

3. One of my best Christmas memories is that of carolling with our youth group every Christmas Eve. We would meet at about 10:00 pm and carol from door to door until well past midnight. What fun it was...and either our singing was much appreciated or people were caught up in the Christmas spirit...but we received candies, cookies, hot chocolate and all manner of goodies for our efforts!

4. I will never forget our first Christmas tree after we were married. In true storybook fashion...we drove up the mountain and found us a little tree beside the road. It was free…it was fun…but was it legal? Hmmm...I'm thinking maybe not. We joined the law-abiding citizens in future years and purchased our trees from the tree farm like everyone else. One year our tree came from a tree farm located next to a hog farm...and soon our entire house smelled...not of pine trees...but of pig sties!

5. Christmas preparations always bring memories of my dear mother-in-law coming over for a baking blitz. We would start mixing cookies at the crack of dawn…and we would bake all day. Had I been on my own…I would have tired of the process in short order. But Nellie could bake forever…and by the time the day was done, every container…and every freezer was full! Oh how I miss her! Another Christmas memento from my mom-in-law is the first Christmas gift she gave me…a pair of black leather gloves, made in Italy and I still wear them.

6. I went to visit Santa at Eaton's department store as a child. What a thrill to climb those stairs to the second floor...traipse through a huge toy department and wait in line to see Santa. I don't recall ever believing there was a Santa...but it was a fun game to play. Eaton's stores disappeared into oblivion about ten years ago, after filing for bankruptcy...but the building where I visited Santa still stands.

7. Every Christmas I memorized poems…usually one for the church program on Christmas Eve and (in my earlier years) there was always a German poem to learn and recite for my grandparents. How I wish that I could remember even one of them! I do however, still know a German song my grandmother taught me…and which I taught my children when they were small. They spoke not a word of German…but could sing the song quite nicely! It wasn’t meant to be a Christmas carol…but it worked beautifully as one, and brings back wonderful Christmas memories for me. The last Christmas that my grandmother was on this earth, we took our three children to visit her in a care home. We had practiced 'her German song’ and the kids were going to sing it for her. When we got there, we found my grandmother in the large meeting room together with all the others. They were waiting for a group of singers to arrive and present a Christmas program…the singers were a ‘no show’ and the seniors were most disappointed. The manager of the home asked if we might be willing to sing something for the group...as they were so looking forward to their concert. Well, we had our one song ready for Grandma…and we sang it heartily for those precious old folks on that winter night just before Christmas.. The words were “It is so wonderful in my Father’s house”. Decades earlier she had taught me to sing this song...one which spoke of anticipation of our eternal home. Now my children sang it for her…and soon she was able to discover for herself how beautiful it really was in ‘her Father’s house’. Among all my memories of Christmas past…this is one of the best.

Jesus came from His Father’s house to live with us…so that we may one day live with Him in that wonderful place. Christmas past, present and future…that’s what it is all about!

If you feel so inclined...join in the fun and play Christmas tag. And be sure to let me know...I'd love to hear your memories of Christmas past!

Enjoy the day...

11 comments:

  1. Judy, your memories of Christmas are so sweet. I love the scenes laid out before me, I can visualize them perfectly. (I just needed to see you little. .that would have helped) .. .and the song for your grandma. . oh so wonderful.

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  2. I don't remember the German poems either, but I'm sure we could still sing a Christmas program of German carols, and it wouldn't take much practice to brush up and be able to recite Luke 2 in German. Christmas Eve all dressed up in a new velvet dress and new black shiny shoes, sitting in the almost-dark in front of the glowing Christmas tree, while Mom finished getting the little sisters ready, and then needing Dad to hold our hands as we walked from the car to the church because our new shoes were too slippery on the packed snow...one of the Christmas Eve's that I wasn't sick. "Es ist so wundershoen!"

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  3. O Du Frohlichke, O Du Frohlicke,
    I remember singing German songs.
    I could tick off a few that would of been similiar for me.
    I loved getting a brand new dress, but somehow I never got the black patent shoes. My mom sewed the dress, but the shoes had to wait.

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  4. Wonderful Judy...love the tag answers you gave. Makes me feel all holiday like...and I still love O Christmas Tree in German...
    hugs
    Sandi

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  5. Judy, I loved reading these Christmas tags about you.

    I loved Santa when I was a little girl, but I was afraid of him. I only wanted to see him from afar. I would hide if he was strolling around inside the store.

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  6. Sweet are your memories...even the one where you stole a tree. LOL!

    I know one German song, too, but it is about God being the liberator. I think your song sounds perfect for that moment in time.

    Also appreciate learning about a good mother/daughter-in-law relationship such as the one you enjoyed with your mother-in-law. I didn't appreciate mine until it was nearly too late. Thankfully, we were able to finish our relationship on a much more positive tone.

    Love the tags upon your tree!

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  7. Oh this was fun to read! You have some very special memories!

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  8. judy, i joined you in the tag. it was kinda fun doing it and thinking back. come visit ;-)

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  9. Judy, this post was wonderful to read! Christmas alway brings back such special memories so clearly...every carol, ornament, Christmas card, baked treat ...our family traditions.... they all add up to wonderful moments to cherish.

    Hugs, Pat

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  10. 'O tannenbaum, o tannenbaum'..ahh I loved your memories of Christmas Judy. Thanks for sharing them.
    I remember having more than one gathering the same day and trying to keep white leotards clean for my daughters! Don't know why I stressed..hehe

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  11. Thanks for initiating the trip down memory lane. I wasn't sure I'd have 7 but now that I've started, there are alot more that I could share. As Lovella said, you have the ability to use words that make it easy for us to visualize the stories you tell.
    As for German songs - How could it be Christmas without "Stille Nacht" and "Leise lieselt die (der?) Schnee" (my German is VERY rusty but I think many of you will recognize and remember that song)

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