Christmas Memories and Traditions

If you live in an area that gets snow, do you remember your first white Christmas? I do. I was six years old living in Greensboro, when my parents decided to stay with some friends over Christmas. They didn’t live far, but apparently a blizzard was on the way, and they wanted to have us all together on Christmas day. So we went to spend the night on Christmas eve with them. Their home was a split level house, typical of North Carolina homes of the era, with a circular staircase hidden behind a closet door on the second floor leading to a cozy and rustic attic space. Twin beds with warm quilts awaited their daughter and I, and we stayed up very late too excited to sleep. On Christmas morning, I awoke at dawn and looked out the window to see a world of white with more coming down. I remember feeling that magic was happening, and I stayed at the window in the early light watching the snow fall for quite a while. I still have that sense of delight whenever the world turns into a wonderland of snow.

Another memory begins some years ago when my mother began collecting Lenox Holiday Tartan china, and using her set became our holiday tradition for Christmas day at her home. For several years, I gave her pieces of it as well for Christmas gifts. One year, about 3 years before she passed away, she decided she wanted to have our extended family for a Christmas party at her home and make it a formal dinner. She bought more china plates, rented tables, tablecloths and crystal, and hosted 15 at her home. She set up the dinner table as one long table through her dining area and most of the way into the living room. She was an avid tablescaper, and it was gorgeous, set with low candles, gold ornaments and chargers, and all that china. I wish I had a photo of that table, but it was before my blogging days. It was the last time we were all together like that. It was an amazing weekend for us to stay with her, and see family we didn’t often get to see. One of these days, I’ll have a big party again, and have a sumptuous buffet with those plates. When I inherited them, I sold all my Spode Christmas Tree china, as one really doesn’t need three sets of holiday dishes, LOL!

If you enjoy reading stories of traditions and charm, one of my favorite books, The Heart of Christmas published by Victoria is a gem. The book has Christmas traditions across the United States, shares recipes for holiday cookies, candies, breads, scones, cakes, and desserts, and looks at Christmas gifts, decorations, and ornaments. Wonderful writing accompanies Victoria Magazine’s outstanding photography.

Christmas Cookies are a tradition each year, too. I baked a half recipe of my Christmas Vanilla Sugar Cookies this past weekend, and decorated them.

It is wonderful this year to share our memories, and our hopes for making new ones in the future. A group of us sharing a favorite holiday memory, tradition or story have joined Bernie at Needle and Foot for a blog hop. Some of the blogs will have prizes for sharing, and I am one of those too! Have fun hopping today, and reading some stories.

Leave a comment with a memory or tradition from your home, and you’ll be entered in the drawing to win a copy of another wonderful Victoria magazine book, At Table With Family and Friends. Enjoy 200 recipes, tips on serving, menus for all kinds of meals, and historical trivia. Maybe you have a midnight church service you always attend, a special ornament to be placed with tree trimming tradition, cookies to be baked, a special meal to prepare, or a white elephant gift that is passed around in the family. Share your story, and I’ll draw a winner on Saturday.

Do you remember a white Christmas, or a special event with family?

Fat Quarter Shop is starting their annual Countdown To Christmas sales, something new at clearance pricing every day!

58 thoughts on “Christmas Memories and Traditions

  1. Joy B

    I remember as a child being at my grandparents home in Virginia on Christmas day when it started to snow. Like you, I’ve watched out the window for a long time as the world turned beautifully white. That was the first white Christmas I remember. I’ve only seen a few of them but they are very special. When my children were growing up one of our Christmas traditions was to gather at my home for a chili supper after our Christmas Eve service at the church where I work. Many years, friends would join us, it was a low-key, fun time to be together. I’d leave a big pot of chili in the crockpot while we were at church so it would be hot and ready when we got home. This year we won’t be gathering like that but next year hopefully we can continue that tradition.

  2. I can picture your mother’s beautiful table set with the Lenox pattern. I enjoyed reading your memories. There are so many memories that flood my mind, and each one is so special. Merry Wednesday, Carole.

    1. Susan Bennett

      I grew up in Michigan and cannot remember a Christmas morning without snow. It does make everything beautiful. I have read Victoria magazine for years and they certainly make the holidays magical. I love your tablescapes . You’re inspiring to me. Thank you.

  3. Julie

    Ever the early riser, I was the first to greet Christmas morning when I was three. Our family gift exchange was always on Christmas Eve, Santa left unwrapped gifts under the tree for us to discover Christmas morning. I indiscriminately discovered them all that day, embellishing the canvas tops on my brothers’ army trucks with Chantilly perfume. The whole house was filled with that beautiful fragrance. I don’t remember getting in trouble over what had happened but there was a lot of hub-bub going on around me as my mother tried to preserve what was left of the perfume & my grandmother was busy hand washing the canvas covers in the kitchen sink.

  4. Now we know where your table scaping interest began! I grew up in So. California, so the idea of a white Christmas was foreign to us. Not until I had young children and lived a few winters in Minnesota did I experience snow at Christmas. I still find watching the falling snow incredible. I love to play in it too. Living for the last 30+ years in the mid-atlantic region, it is hit or miss for snow during the holidays. Keeping my fingers crossed for late next week!

  5. Jean

    In Wisconsin, a brown Christmas is an exception. We opened gifts on Christmas Eve and Santa came early to our house…one of his first stops I guess. After supper we all went to the barn for milking except my mom.. chores done we would walk back to the house checking the sky for a sleigh. Surprise, stockings were filled.

  6. karenfae

    somehow I am not surprised that your mother had Christmas china – we know where you got it from – your love of all sorts of pretty dishes to use. Love the snow photos too – nice memories

  7. You have obviously picked up your mother’s skill at tablescaping. I enjoyed reading this post, and how I would love to have seen that table, all dressed and waiting for the guests to arrive. What wonderful memories!

  8. lynn bourgeois

    I am in a mood for reminiscing this morning I guess Great Christmas memories I loved hearing about yours. When I was a child in Nova Scotia, snow was always there over Christmas to the best of my recollection. I remember the reflection of the tree lights on our living room floors. They were hardwood floors that my dad laid when I was an elementary school child, and I have always been charmed by the warm wood glow from lights ever since.
    I have one unusual memory from Christmas past. I was a student nurse in 1965, working through a psychiatric rotation about 100 miles from home, and as it happened I was slated to be one of the students to work over the holiday. I was 17 yrs old at the time, and had always been home as part of our big family Christmas. I grew up in a coal mining town where friendships were tight, and celebrations many. The Christmas of 1965 when I wasn’t home with everyone, my mum and dad with some of our neighbours and friends sent me a Christmas box, not with typical presents, but with notes, and a large candle that would be lit on Christmas eve and would stay lit through till later on Christmas Day. I could feel the love and warmth of family and friends through that night, and into the 25th. While I still longed for home , I didn’t feel the pain of loneliness that might have been present without this outpouring of love.
    Wishing you and yours a Christmas of love and joy in the celebrating of this season.

    1. Wow, this is a powerful memory. How difficult to have to be away from home at the holidays at only 17 years old. So sweet of everyone to send you the box of special notes to make that Christmas special for you.

  9. Rita C.

    Carole, I love your memories! Actually one of my fondest Christmas memories was when I received the sewing machine I was telling you about in your post of the bobbin woes. That was a very special one for me. Another very special memory are all the aluminum trees we had (3!) in our home’s picture windows. Each one had a color wheel. We had a live tree in our living room, and Dad built a big wooden box base for it to raise it about 2′ off the floor (high ceilings!) so all of our presents would fit beneath. With nine kids, we were all spoiled at Christmas with a pile, and we would each claim our space for gift drop. 🙂

  10. I’m from Wisconsin so a white Christmas is a no brainer. It wasn’t until I moved to Texas that I realized some people have never seen or enjoyed snow. Making snowmen, sledding on new Christmas sleds, ice skating on outdoor rinks with warming houses and making snow angels are all fond memories. I’m in the GA mountains now, and always happy to see a blanket of snow here.

  11. Brenda @ Songbird Designs

    What great memories, and a joy to inherit your mom’s tablescape skills! That sounds like some kind of spread. We, fortunately for us, but unfortunately for the kids, do not get much snow here! I love to see it, as long as we don’t lose power and I can stay inside and enjoy the beauty. Our last good one was several years ago when everyone got stuck. It took Gary over 4 hours to get home and our daughter about 6-1/2 to go from school to day care to get the kids, to their home which is about a 10 mile or less trip! It was crazy. I don’t ever remember a white Christmas. When we do have it, it’s a little before or after. I do remember a New Year’s snow though!! And of course the Blizzard of ’03 when we got 18 inches!!

  12. Debbie Miller Meyer

    I guess mine is not so much a tradition, but a story I’d love to share.

    My Dad had this plastic church that played Silent Night when cranked up. You could insert a big tree bulb in the back and the light would shine through the stained plastic windows making a beautiful glow. He used to crank it up on Christmas Eve and it would play and play. After my Dad passed, my Mom and I put it out every year, but it no longer would play and the little cross that was on top of the steeple was broken off and lost. Mom moved in with us , so the church went under our tree every year just like it had during my childhood. Mom passed in Oct 1989, and that year the church went under the tree. I decided to glue the bottom back to the top and I also inserted a blue light into the back. The bulb was on a cord that my hubby made for me just so the church would light again. It was beautiful. After years of trying to crank that tree up to play, it never would, but this first Christmas after Mom passed I cranked it, still nothing, then I took the little crank off and tried to turn it with my fingers, it moved a little, but still nothing so I put the crank back on and tried it yet again fir the upteenth time and it began to play. Silent Night, just as it did all my life., once again brought all those childhood memories flooding back. To this day, it continues to play, it now sits beside my nativity set all lit up reminding me of my wonderful childhood and all our family memories.

    1. Joan Sheppard

      Holidays surprise us with little miracles and your parents legacy remains. “I have only slipped into the next room” by Henry Scott Holland, a poem I read long ago bubbles up at times like this.

  13. Linda B

    Fun to sit here recalling memories that your blog sparked! Some of my best ones involve my grandparents who lived in Garret County Maryland. One year we left the DC area as a family to drive up to their farm for Christmas, but the weather turned to snow. This was 60 years ago approx. No interstates, just Hwy 50. We were one of the last cars the police let start up a significant mountain, and my dad had put chains on the tires just before we started the grade. Remember that? We did fine, but it was slow going. When we were within 1 mile of the farm, following the snow plow, the snow plow went up 219 instead of continuing on 50, and there was a wall of snow. Fortunately, the church my grandparents attended was right there at the intersection, it was unlocked, and we went in. My Dad had to start the furnace in the basement and I can still recall that smell. Soon there was a tractor trailer in the same plight, and three young men came into the church with us. We spent the night there together, and in the morning sometime we heard the snow plow going down the highway past my grandparents driveway. We had to park across the street because the driveway was drifted so high that when we tried walking up the drive, my younger brother was completely out of sight in a hole. We trudged through, and the three young men came with us and we all had a wonderful breakfast of buckwheat cakes and sausages and were so thankful we arrived safely!

  14. Bridget

    Many happy memories of Christmas here. I am making some right now. As I take a short break from working at home, I am listening to my daughter practice her Christmas music on the piano while she takes a break from her school work. My other daughter is working on her school project. We are snuggled into our nice warm home and watching the window for the snow to start. Well, my husband isn’t looking forward to the snow and the plowing that go with it! lol He can come in to a hot cup of chocolate and cookies.

  15. I love picturing you up in the attic bedroom with your friend. How sweet.
    Your mother certainly passed down her talent for beautiful tables to you Carole. Thank you for sharing these memories.

  16. Carolyn K.

    My grandparents often hosted Christmas at their 100+ year old farmhouse in Michigan’s snow belt. One year our family arrived early on Christmas Eve day as we had to travel out from Chicago and more snow was predicted for later that night. ( Many a year Grandpa would have to plow out the long, sandy driveway and pull our car out of the drifts so we could reach the house.)
    There was definitely a different feel to the house that year: too quiet, empty cookie jar, no good cooking smells, no greetings at the back door. Oh, my grandparents were there, smiles on their faces, sitting in their favorite chairs with presents sitting on another. But, not a sign of tree or any other Christmas decor, no baking or cooking smells, just quiet. My grandparents had been ill, were recovering and had done all they could; but there was such sadness in that house.
    My family went into overdrive, Mom in the kitchen-baking pans out, Dad emptying out the car, shoveling out the walkways, my sister and I left for the woods. We gathered evergreen branches, ivy, even a scruffy little tree. Back we came to decorate the mantle, tables and, yes, even that “tree”. All presents could now claim their rightful place under it. We pulled out every Christmas decoration we could find and used every bit to fill that old house, and all of a sudden, there was laughter, movement, hot chocolate, coffee brewing, cookies baking, good cheer, Christmas was here!

  17. We live in North Dakota, so in general we always have a white Christmas. I remember one year, when we traveled to Minnesota to my grandparents house out on the farm. Instead of just our small family or 3 kids and parents, we were surrounded by dozens of cousins, aunts and uncles and of course grandma and grandpa. Each of us kids were give a taste of wine at the big dinner (not something we had in my parents’ teetotaler house). That holiday, over 45 years ago, still stands out as one of my favorites.

  18. Darci Marshall

    Thanks for sharing such lovely Christmas memories, it inspires me to stay some of my own! My only tradition is a recipe for “date balls” from my grandmother

  19. Those dishes are gorgeous! And I feel the same about snow, though it can be gone after New Year’s ha! As I type, we are getting our second snowfall of winter. The previous one disappeared, so I wonder if this one will stay?

  20. I don’t remember my 1st Snowy Christmas but I do remember the 1st Christmas after moving to the “BIG” house. The house was on a two lane chip and tar road outside of the city limits with just a small cluster of of houses surrounded by fields. Christmas Eve there was a snowstorm that brought 8 to 10 inches of snow. Which is enough to deal with but there was also high winds which whipped across the fields and piled the snow up around the houses. I was drifted up to the tops of the doors and windows in front and in the backyard there was hardly any snow at all. So after we opened presents and had breakfast we all bundled up and went out the back door to deal with the snow.

  21. What wonderful Christmas memories. And I am glad you now have your Mother’s Lennox China and can make more special memories with it. Soon you’ll be able to have others over for Christmas celebrations and share your beautiful table.

  22. I really miss the snow now that we aren’t in Wisconsin any more. It was always wonderful to have snow at Christmas. And I love your china! What a beautiful celbrations must happen at your house! Merry Christmas!

  23. Snow is magical! We live in Snow Country and always have a white Christmas – after 35 years here I don’t know any other way. So I can relate to your awe about that blizzardy Christmas. And what fun to bring the whole family together for a celebration. The china is simply lovely – what a keepsake. It’s begging to come out again, I just know it!

  24. Kimberly

    My most memorable Christmas memory is of me as a child trying to figure out the whole Santa issue. I was starting to get seriously curious how Santa could enter our house through the chimney and how he could see me doing good or bad deeds! It wasn’t that I doubted he could, but HOW did he do it? So I waited in my bed until the house became silent and I was sure that my parents had gone to sleep. (It had to be seriously late because my parents later told me they often stayed up until 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning wrapping our presents!) Once I was completely sure that I was safe to go see how Santa accomplished his miracle, I quietly crept down the stairs trying very carefully to not let our old creaky steps make a squeak! My heart was in my throat trying to be oh so quiet, it seemed like eternity to me to get down those steps! I kept thinking, “Will Santa or my parents hear or see me?” If so I would for sure lose all of my Christmas!!! I got to the half way point on the steps and all of a sudden I was able to see the living room! I almost lost all my air in my lungs! For right there in the middle of our living room Santa was sitting there looking straight at me!!!! He did not move a muscle! He just stared at me!!! I seriously could not get my breath!!! I was losing blood flow to my head and I felt as though I was going to pass out! What should I do? Santa is not yelling at me, my parents have not heard me, but I have been caught right in the act! Once I got my balance and breath back I decided that crawling back up the stairs would be my best course of action. I was so happy to get back in bed, that bed never felt so good! I could not figure out what just happened, but I felt such a sense of relief to be ‘safe’ in my bed. I was pretty sure that my Christmas was ruined as far as Santa was concerned, but at least my parents did not know what I did. (It did not occur to me that my parents would be clued in once they saw that all my sisters got presents from Santa but I had none! lol) The next morning when we all got out of bed and my sisters went down the stairs with excited screams, I went slowly! When I came to the half way point on the stairs and could see in the living room (the same point on the stairs where I saw Santa the night before) I was shocked to see that ‘Santa’ was a world globe sitting on a table! Oh my word!!! What just happened? I could not believe my eyes! All that scare was over a globe sitting on a table?!?! I came down and tried to join in the excitement with my family and try to act like nothing ever happened! As I tried to process the events from the night and morning I decided Santa was not real, but it took awhile before my parents would actually fess up! It was many years before I told my parents what I had done, I don’t think they ever appreciated the drama I had gone through that night! LOL

  25. Bonnie Coleman

    Hi Carole! I’d like to share a Christmas memory from my family. Growing up in rural Georgia, we learned the strong values of family, worship and appreciation for all the gifts of nature. My dad, a WWII vet, was a serious lover of the land and all things natural. He made a fine home for our large family of five children, one of which was severely handicapped. Ever a believer of salvaging the past, he had an old log barn moved to our property. During Christmas, he would set up the barn with a life-size Nativity, in which he had all his own live animals…horses, sheep, goats and donkeys with spotlights focused on them. One special Christmas, it snowed..a rare event in South Georgia indeed! The Nativity was just spectacular that year and many travelers on US Hwy. 15 slowed down to see the Manger scene there. People still brag on his barn scene. He passed at 92 in 2012 but he left all of us such a legacy of faith and witness!! Thanks for listening! Bonnie Coleman

  26. Nancy H.

    We usually traveled to my grandparents home on Christmas Day to be with extended family. It always seemed like a terribly long drive. It would take us over an hour to get there. And when we got there it was pandemonium and that was with only 6 grandkids. My grandmother was a wonderful cook. I remember her meals and she never asked anyone to bring anything to help her so she did it all. We would always have a dinner and then gather in the front room to open our gift. We would generally only get one thing but it was always so special because of the time with family. I guess what I have missed most during the last months is the lack of extended family time.

  27. I have always lived in a place where it snows, so I don’t have a memory of my first time seeing it, but yours is sure sweet! My mom had very pretty china, not necessarily a holiday pattern, but special nonetheless, and we knew it was a holiday meal when she used it. I have it now, and also my MIL’s – I should really get it out one of these days! Your wonderful tablescapes are always fun to see, and now we know who they are inspired by!

  28. I loved reading about your memory of your mom setting that beautiful table with those fancy dishes. My favorite Christmas memories center around cookie baking and making gingerbread houses with my kids. My first attempt at a gingerbread house was actually a church with candy stain glass windows that took two weeks to decorate. It included a parking lot with cars and a sidewalk with gingerbread people.

  29. Snow is kinda hard to come by in the South but on the one year anniversary of my 19 year old sons accident a 6 inch storm blew through central Mississippi ,out of no where. It was on ,or about, Dec. 15 . 1997. He had passed on Dec. 15 1996 and needless to say Christmas that year was very simple and quiet. I took it as reassurance that every thing is ok . There is a story about Chick a Dees on Mothers Day following his accident that is for another time. Our god is a loving God and leaves little touches when we need them.

  30. Marion

    My favorite Christmas memories are always having a live Christmas tree. Every Christmas Eve dad would read the “Twas The Night Before Christmas” to my twin and me while mom and older sister prepared for Christmas day. On Christmas morning we would all go and sit on the bed and watched one by one open their stockings. After breakfast we would go in the parlor and open the presents by the tree. Santa Claus left his gifts un wrapped by the tree while family gifts were pretty wrapped. Santa Claus we did not visit. Marilyn and I were scared of him. Once when we were very small we went to see him. After waiting on a long line ,we refused to go up and sit on his lap. Dad said we waited this long ,so I will go up and get the gifts. Of course everyone waited was laughing. He said Santa I don’t want to sit on your lap just get the gifts for my daughters.

  31. Joan Sheppard

    Floodgates of memories! One Christmas Eve we left early for midnight Mass with a perfect light snow falling. We stayed late to chat with friends and special blessings for the kids. When we emerged, there was snow enough to cover our shoes! The hills in Pennsylvania are very steep and we couldn’t get the car back up the hill. So we carried the kids on our backs and started to sing to keep them from being scared – feeling very like the Von Trapp family crossing the Alps! Funny how carrying kids UPHILL can keep you very warm indeed. Lots of great memories.

  32. Susan Salo

    My mom had the Spode Christmas dishes and used them every year. Also, I bought her something for the set every year. When she passed I inherited all the china. Since we haven’t had the family at our house for a few years the dishes haven’t been seen. This year, I’ve started a new tradition that a few friends of mine do- the Spode came out and we are using it every day this month! It’s just the two of us but it’s meaningful, especially this year. In SE Michigan the snow is iffy for Christmas, but I love it when we have it!

  33. Cathie J

    Every December 1st, I take out my Nikko Christmas dishes and we use them every day for the entire month of December. I had to buy 4 more dinner dishes this year the finish is crazing on a few of them and they are no longer suitable for use on Christmas. I think it makes every day festive throughout the month. I really like those Lenox dishes. I may start my daughter on a set some time soon.

  34. Rose P

    In 1977 my husband and I were dating. WE WERE POOR!! We had eucalyptus around the apartment. We gathered it all up, put it in a wine bottle and strung lights on it, That was our first Christmas tree. Two years later we brought our newborn baby girl home 2 days before Christmas.

  35. It is snowing here today and we just shoveled our driveway 🙂 My neighbors kids made a snowman. I am ready for Christmas and the break. Of course one of these days we will have a large party and invite all my friends and I will hold them in big and squishy hugs. Sometimes we travel for Christmas, sometimes we have a tree, sometimes we are alone and sometimes we have my sister over. Our traditions are fluid at this time and I am fine with it.
    There is one exception – I must give a Christmas card to Paul. THAT is an absolute must. He always gave me one and I did not. (In India we did not exchange cards within the family – it is a cultural thing, I guess). The dangers of marrying a pagan/exotic woman, you can say. I did not realize how important it was for Paul until the day he expressed it in not so gentle words. I have never forgotten. When we travelled to India for Christmas, I was carrying his card in my suitcase. Lesson learned 🙂

  36. All of my Christmases were white until we moved to Colorado, where I experienced my first 60 degree Christmas! We could not believe it! I much prefer the stillness of fresh December snow just before dawn, it is so peaceful and beautiful.

  37. Since I started out in central Illinois, there was usually snow on the ground at Christmas. It was magical! Loved it! Sledding, skating, even walking to school in it—Loved it all! As a church-going family, we always went to late Christmas Eve services and while we were there, Santa would have delivered our gifts under the tree. My mother couldn’t wait till morning to open them, so we dived into them before we went to bed! Years later I learned that she wanted to look nice in the Christmas pictures, not in her bathrobe with hair all askew. One year, she got the flu, despite getting the flu shot, so my older sister and brother drove us kids the three hours to be with our aunts and uncles and cousins we dearly loved. While Mom was recovering, Dad fixed broiled lobster tail for their Christmas Dinner! Living now in New Hampshire, we usually have snow on the ground for Christmas, and plenty that comes afterward. As a matter of fact, it’s snowing now and we are expecting 6-12 “! Happy to stay inside at this stage of the game. Merry Christmas, Everyone!

  38. So enjoyed this posting. I especially enjoyed visiting all the links for Holiday Tales and Traditions. As we continue to shelter in place visiting these pages feels like visiting with old friends. You really got me thinking about adding a memory or tradition ~ A tradition ~ Raising my family, I always made New England clam chowder in the crock pot on Christmas eve, but what my 5 daughters remember (and loved if you can believe it) was my home made chopped chicken liver pate I made too for the holidays. I am always surprised to when one tells me, mom I remember the chopped liver and loved it. lol that’s no chopped liver when kids like it 🙂

  39. Such wonderful memories Carole. How wonderful that you have your mothers beloved China to use. As a child growing up in an armed forces family and living in so many places, we were only able to go to my grandparents twice for Christmases. They were wonderful and special. Since we were usually just us 6 (parents and 4kids) we always had our own traditions. Baking started with the fruitcakes on my birthday in October. Then on my Mom’s weekends off we would keep up adding to the goodie stash. Being Canadian we always had snow no matter where we were posted in Canada and in Europe my Dad was stationed in Germany so we had snow, too! Christmas Eve we always had a dinner of finger foods, dips, pickles (my Mom made the best pickled beets, pickled onions, and bread and butter pickles) cheese and crackers. We sat in the dining room, surrounded by food and played games while listening to Christmas records and watching the snow coming down. When I had my own family this tradition continued except we moved to the living room and played games and had our feast with pots of tea and hot chocolate in the living room. So many memories of laughter, fun and good food. 😄

  40. My favorite thing about a snowfall (I grew up in MI) is the way the light changes as it reflects off the whiteness – magical, ethereal, and oh, so special. Even where we live now in TN where it rarely snows and when it does there’s not much of it, we sometimes get that special light and it always makes me happy. Merry Christmas!

  41. A white Christmas does feel magical, doesn’t it? Even though most of my Christmases have been white (really, it’s the ones that weren’t that stand out), I still love to have snow on Christmas. It’s even better if it actually snows on Christmas Day, too 🙂 We got snow this week, so hopefully that will still be on the ground come Christmas Day.

  42. Tina W

    It’s been fun reading everyone’s special Christmas memories! My story begins in the summer in central California when we would help my dad cut wood that he would sell. We made huge piles of brush as a result. On Christmas Eve, my grandparents would come for dinner. Afterward, my dad, grandpa and us four kids would go out and burn the brush piles. It was to show Santa the way to our house! Of course when we got back home, the presents would be under the tree and we would have “just missed” Santa!

  43. Gail

    A favorite tradition was getting dressed up on Christmas Eve for a fancy supper at home and then my sister and I would put on a piano recital for our parents.

  44. Snow was often present, rarely in the way but I do remember it changing plans a few times. I do remember with fondness our own little nativity pagaent that my aunt would orchestrate each year. Eventually, as we got older it stopped but the youngest would do it with some family friends their age and then the grands did it! It was fun to see them doing what we did!

  45. Wonderful memories, and great decor, as always. Our family did not have any special traditions. Being the last of the immediate family, I do truly miss them all now more than ever.

  46. Sandi

    I don’t remember how old I was but I remember getting a bike for Christmas and was so excited. My twin and I snuck down the stairs to peek under the tree and there they were. They were a pretty green. Thanks for sharing your memories.

  47. Carolyn K.

    Dear Carole,
    I loved your Christmas story and wanted someone to read my long ago, almost forgotten memory. I really didn’t realize I was entering your contest and I was thrilled when you sent me such a lovely reply. So, today’ s e-mail was a wonderful surprise! Thank you, thank you.

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