Monday, December 24, 2007
I have a lot of memories of Christmas, most of them from my adult years. Oh, don’t get me wrong – I do remember Christmas as a child, but they’re mostly a blur, one meshing in with another until they become one long string of Christmases. No, I mean my memories of Christmas are much clearer after I became an adult. I no longer woke up before the break of dawn to rush my parents out of bed, but rather lay in my own, listening to the sounds of the house waking up, my parents whispering in the dining room, the smell of coffee. I’d join them, mother would wish me happy birthday, and we would read the paper quietly together. It wasn’t the same every Christmas; it depended upon whether the others (my sister, brothers and families) were coming in for Christmas breakfast or dinner. If it were breakfast, then the morning was a rush of orange juice cans, egg shells and coffee grounds. If dinner – well the smells of ham baking, or pies, or bread, the oven constantly going; the bustle of activity, last minute cleaning before the group arrived. Then I’d play Santa, sitting under the tree handing out presents, my own set aside. Watching the kids open their gifts – there’s no magic in the world that can compare. And then the dinner where there was more food than any one family could possibly eat. Turkey, ham, yams, potatoes, salads of every variety and color, desserts galore; stories and games, laughter and more eating. And love. A lot of love.
That’s my wish for you this Christmas – family, laughter, memories - but most of all, love.