Monday, December 23, 2013

Late Monday Mayhem and Foolishness: Christmas Memories

My friend Eden Winters asked me to tell her about a favorite Christmas memory. My favorite memory is of the time my parents friends, Sue and Scott, asked us to house sit/plant and pet sit for them over the Christmas break. They'd gone to Scott or Sue's folks for the holiday, but someone needed to keep the fish and philodendrons alive... so they tapped /George and Nancy, my folks. We drove our old rattle-trap International Harvester pick-up truck with the two by four truck bed my dad built after the original was destroyed. It was very Jed Clampett and family. I still miss that old truck.

We got to their little student apartment and man oh man, the small one bedroom apartment was light-years
above the single room tow along trailer we lived in year round. There was an indoor bathroom and shower, the water came from taps instead of a frozen over stream. And best of all there was room for a real deal, full sized Christmas tree. Sue left us a note held to the front of the refrigerator with a happy Santa-Claus magnet. I don't recall the exact words, but I sure do recall the upshot of the message. She had a tree we could use, so we could save our tree money to buy presents for each other. Woo-hoo, there were even ornaments and twinkling white lights to put on the tree. I was high on Christmas magic. My eight year old mind could not conceive of a more magical thing...


Goes to show how foolish an young I was, huh? Because after my sisters and I fell asleep in three little sleeping bags on the living room floor of that warm, clean, magical Christmas apartment with the tree's lights twinkling over our faces, our mother baked , built, iced and decorated the most beautiful gingerbread house I have ever seen in my life. We didn't know mom had done it until years later. No. We were sure Santa had come, found us in our temporary lodgings and left something extra-special to make our Christmas the best ever. At around three or four in the morning, Wendy, Nicole and I woke. We saw the gingerbread house. Far too excited to go back to sleep, we lay in our sleeping bags through the rest of the night, whispering about how Santa found us and how clever he was.

My sister Wendy was thirteen or fourteen that year. She knew very well the truth about Santa, and what role parents play as Santa's helpers. But for me, her baby sister, she kept the magic alive for one final, perfect holiday. Thank you sis. I love you, and miss you and mom both. Muah.

1 comment:

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