Monday, December 20, 2010

Wow- It's The Week Of Christmas

Wow- every year it seems Christmas gets here faster and faster... they say that comes with age- Since I have a birthday coming up - I am witnessing life at the speed of light now (which is less than impressive).  The children are home from school and the bickering has began, the ham and turkey are in the fridge waiting to be cooked and devoured.  The menu's are in place.  The baking is at an all time high, and the elastic waist pants are front in center of the closet.  The gifts are wrapped and placed lovingly under the tree. I have shared with others that are not as fortunate as my family this year.  It is time to breath and enjoy the magic and true meaning of the season.  I will not preach on my blog, too each their own- and I will not judge.   I will, however, stroll down memory lane and reflect on Christmas past.

HO HO HO and away we go-

Most of my memories take place at my grandparents house.  I have decided to make a top 10 list- I bet a few of mine match yours...
 1. A Full House- Our family was whole.  We were blessed to have all of our loved ones alive and with us under one roof.  Over time, we have lost members to failing health and age.  I had no idea as a child how I would long to relive special moments.  Had I known, I would have soaked in every single detail that was before me.
2. Fruitcake anyone?  Now I am not a fan of  "fruitcake or cannibalism" - BUT, my grandmother use to make a yummy one with condensed milk (I can and will eat a can of this-ahem -I could careless if anyone is looking)- Condensed milk is kinda like cream cheese...if it is part of the ingredients you KNOW it is gonna be good.  Anyways, this fruitcake was moist and rich- not your typical brick.  Why cannibalism? Hello- a bunch of fruitcakes eating fruitcakes..I thought that one was self explanatory.
3. My Grandmother in her apron- Ok- I have shared in the past that Ellen Roof was a fine cook back in the day and I have also shared how she didn't cook anything "fit to eat" if you asked her.  I can see her in marathon mode- whipping those dishes out, heating those rolls and dictating to her "girls" to get ice in the cups and see who wants "what" to drink.
4. The Blessing and Remembrance of the day- My granddaddy's job and he was good at it.
5. Which brings me to my next memory-  The Feast- oh, it was a feast fit for kings every year.  I was a child so I didn't have to "bring a dish".  That in itself is magical.  Someone brings you a plate- you eat- and enjoy.  ** Side note- somehow my sister got away with this tradition until two years ago- pretty cool magic trick right there- she is thirty-something- sigh**
6. Swapping of Gifts- Toys, Toys, and Socks or possible underwear (that is how I remember it).
7.  Idle Chatter at the table-  is it loud in here?- YES - it is.  After dinner and gift giving everyone would head back to the kitchen for dessert.  This is the time everyone would talk over each other- I know there was a half a dozen conversations going on at any one given time.  Charming - huh and it made my list.  *** another side note- this tradition still carries on loud and proud at any holiday, birthday, day of the week, time of day... doesn't matter***
8. Are there any Pecans left to pick up? - didn't see that one coming did ya?  Well, the Grands had a couple of pecan trees in the yard and we would go out with our Woolco/Kmart bags and start the search.  Hindsight, I now know this was a ploy for the smoking adults to sneak outside and burn one when granddaddy wasn't looking.  mmhmmm-
9. Do you remember?  Time to pull out some of the oldest photo albums that exist outside of a museum.   Pretty sure some of them were brought over during the potato famine- Irish to the core over here.
10. My Granddaddy Could Channel Bing-  This by far, is my favorite memory.  Every year, Granddaddy would sit at the head of the table and belt out " White Christmas".  The chatter stopped and everyone listened. He sounded just like Bing Crosby.  To this day, when it comes on the radio- I can not hold back the tears.  I miss this one - more than any of the others. My granddaddy made an impression on me and I had NO idea at the time.  I think he knows now.

 I hope I could remind you of your memories and made you smile.  I know I have grinned and dropped a few tears today- happy tears.
That said, I wish you all a Safe, Healthy and Very Merry Christmas.


  1. I loved this but you did forget the part about keeping no secrets and no surprises.

  2. I was focusing on Christmas day... but that was part of it for sure!

  3. I have many fond memories of our "McFail" family Christmas dinners when I was a child. The adults at the "big" table, the kids at the "little" table.
    When I moved to B'ham, I was fortunate to share a couple of those family get-togethers with the Gafney/Adams families. Good memories. Thanks for reminding me.

  4. Jenn,
    Thanks for strolling down memory lane with us! I truly enjoyed it! Both sides of my grandparents have gone to be with Jesus! I miss them greatly. I too miss being a kid not having to bring a dish to dinner. I miss my PaPa crying because he missed his mom and dad. I miss my Big Mama running around cooking; I miss her fudge; I miss her!

    Now we make our own traditions with my children. We open 1 gift on Christmas Eve which is new pjs. We wake up on Christmas morning open presents, play, eat and go back to bed. We wake up again and begin cooking steaks. I do enjoy not getting dressed the entire day!

    Merry Christmas my Friend! Happy Birthday my Friend!

    Love you!

  5. Jen thanks for reminding me of all the sweet
    memories we forget too soon. God Bless Grandmother and Grandaddy for making those precious days/times for us. At that time we
    sometimes didnt realize how very lucky we were.
    I bet Grandaddy is signing White Christmas in the "heavenly choir" these days. Grandmother
    as we know her is a real "angel" on earth still.
    Praise the Lord for Christian parents.....
    Much love, Janice