Our Christmas gathering is smaller this year but no less festive. We're still a fun, noisy crowd! We missed having Randy and Dawn here for Christmas Eve as they celebrated with her children and grandchildren. (Randy had been thoroughly adopted by "the kids!) 💕
At this time of year we reflect on childhood memories of Christmases past and folks no longer with us. Growing up in Winnipeg Manitoba, my Christmases were always white ... and cold! There was extra sparkle from the colored lights in the clear crisp air. My dad hung blue Christmas lights around our windows and along the eaves of our house all the way up to the English cottage peak. Above our neon house numbers, 820, hung a lighted Santa Claus face. It was no easy task hanging lights when dad's only day off work was Sunday, and it was 20 below! Such was Christmas on the prairies.
The hustle and bustle of downtown Winnipeg in December!
Christmas Eve, family and friends would gather for drinks in our downstairs rec room where the real Fraser fir tree was lit and dangerously close to the glowing heat lamp. (Sometimes reflection makes you wonder how you survived the 1950s and the 1960s! We had it all. Lead paint, open face fans, open face heating elements, no three prong plugs, fuse boxes all relatively unsupervised!) 😬 Uncle Jimmy, married to my dad's sister gave each of us girls $1 ... and we were "over the moon" with excitement. All Christmas Eve friends, family and neighbors popped in for "open house" ... food, drink and merriment. All this wonderful warmth of the season was in stark contrast to the 25 or 30 below Fahrenheit temperatures outdoors. Yes folks, those were the good old days. Mom had spent weeks preparing gifts for we 4 girls while caring for our aging grandmother and my dad. It's not until now, when we do all these things for ourselves, do we appreciate the incredible effort our parents made to give us these wonderful memories. On Christmas Eve we were allowed to open one gift each before bed. The remainder waited for Christmas morn when dad lit the "light bar" and blinded us while taking home movies. (I still have the home movies and Kodak projector!) Oh, the gifts were wonderful too. There were Chatty Cathy dolls, Betsy Wetsy, ice skates, aluminum toboggans, a flying saucer, Miss Canada dolls complete with wardrobe (sewn by my mom) and more. Sue and I received our red cocker spaniel, Ringo, for Christmas in 1964. Wow! That was fantastic as we had naggec for a dog for years! Of course Christmas day dinner was prepared by mom and dad. This meant there were stressful moments in the kitchen, LOL, which were pantomimed one year by Mark and I. Haha. Mom and dad didn't think it unusual at all, as dad remarked, "she's just like her mother!" to which my mom replied "it sounds like home." Well, we all burst into fits of laughter. So that's it. Christmas is a special blend of personal memories tied to family, friends and neighbors. Remember as you enjoy your Christmas this year, it will become next year's memories.
Winnipeg had (has?) wonderful decorations! Dad and mom would take us all for a drive to see "the lights!"
So, on this Christmas Day, everyone arrived about 2 o'clock and we began the festivities of gift exchange. It seemed everyone had use their imagination this year and the gifts were wonderful.
Kris, (Belle in the pink carriage), Diane, Randy & Dawn.
BeeZee and Robbie had a blast opening plenty of gifts.
Sue took a picture of the table setting, and it did look very pretty.
I'm not sure what was going on here, but Randy was laughing so hard he was crying. Haha.
Apparently we did not take very many pictures this year. We certainly had a lot of laughs and a lot of fun.
Merry Christmas one and all. 🎄🎁🎶