18
Dec
11

Holiday Greetings and Memories

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays

I’ve always told others not to dwell on the past, that it’s the future we have to shape. However, some recollection of where we have come from is a good thing. This is a season I love to look back and remember the “good ole’ days” and fold them into the memories that are being formed as we speak.

I grew up in a family that was rich in tradition and love, and the holidays were kicked off with Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving day started at the crack of dawn when all the guys would head to the woods and hunt until time to eat lunch; most likely a ploy by the ladies to get us out of the way so they could cook in peace. Lunch was always a massive feast followed by a nap then a hunt for the Christmas Tree out in the woods again by all the Grandkids… again to get us out of the way of the grownups on the other side of the family so Dinner could be prepared. The Friday after was (of course) heading into town to see Santa arrive for the season and back home to start putting up the Christmas Trees…typically that plural statement translated into 4-5 trees; one each at the grandparents, the one at home, and one at church… and sometimes one outdoors.

The next four weeks were consumed by daily life and making time to find, make, and wrap gifts. There were Christmas Plays, parties, dinners, and events for the holidays that we would attend and celebrate the company of friends and family. Then, Christmas Eve would roll around- Work would ensue for everyone until around noon when the world appeared to shut down. We would load up and head to one set of grandparents and have a light dinner and everyone would be jolly, and joke leading up to grand scheme of every kid in the family, exchanging gifts.

Christmas morning would dawn and while Santa was always generous, the thing we still recall and enjoy the most were the fresh fruits and hearty breakfast as everyone came through our house. Lunch was back to grandparents from the night before and then a heartily needed nap. The evening was off to the other grandparents- always special because the cousins were all in the same age bracket, so there were fewer gifts exchanged but more games played and a kid’s table that never saw a dull moment. After dinner we all gathered by the wood fired heater and listened to tales from a pre-depression era and had pie, cake, fruit and whatever we wanted. There was always some “preserved” grape juice from the fall that even the kids got to try a small taste of.

These days, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are filled with so much rushing to and fro that I almost have learned to dread it. But then I look back and remember that there’s a reason we do it… and hopefully the next generation will remember these years as fondly as we do the past and who knows what small token memory will influence the way they see the world and what role they will undertake in changing the world we live in.

As we’re a week from Christmas, I lift a glass of my favorite preserved grape juice to you and yours and hope you will have a celebration worth remembering for generations to come.

Peace and Love from Christopher’s Wine & Cheese.

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