These Times

With all due respect to Thanksgiving, I am going to piece together snippets from Christmas Days past in the hopes of having a collage of memories to refer to as this season passes by and becomes one for the history books. I remember saying ‘see ya’ to school friends as we boarded separate buses and went on our merry holiday way to begin a two week sojourn into a world of taffy, candy bars, eggnog and whatever treats a visitor may be sharing. Where I lived, off in the woods, a lot of time was spent outdoors and my 11th Christmas Day comes to mind because a huge snowfall arrived just after Santa Claus did and it sure was fun pushing my Tonka trucks through the snowdrifts. An all-day job THAT was creating a highway from head-high piles of snow!

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The memories of Mr. Potatohead and model cars helping me get through the boring, post-Christmas days are vivid, counting down the days until I would board a school bus to take me back to good old Lebanon High where “our strong bands would ne’er be broken,” and backslapping old cronies as we told our tales of giving and receiving. How jealous was I when Bob told of his receiving a Rupp snowmobile as his Christmas gift. We all made plans to go and take it for a spin around the woods when we could, but Bob didn’t seem as agreeable on that one.

I have even tried to determine which Christmas Day is the first one I remember, and I cannot. Was if third grade with Mrs. Beaupre or fourth grade, where Miss Chapman would ring a handbell out the window to put an end to recess? And I cannot, to this day, answer that question.

Of course, as I aged, the child in me abated and the day was more in watching the nieces and nephews frolic like I once did, opening presents with great anxiety and piling shredded wrapping paper onto the floor, accumulating higher like those snowbanks when I was eleven years old. Was that me, I ask myself, when I was seven years old, a smile nearly broader than my face as I stood amidst the splendor that is Christmas, decorated tree glowing lights of different colors, the squeals of delight and the promise of a fun day before me?

And now it’s one day at a time, realizing my collage of Christmases past would probably remain as that, and now it’s time to add another piece. I wish all of you a Happy Holiday season, and if you are sentimental like me... remember if you can, the highlights of Christmas days gone by – it’s worth it.

See you in the spring!

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