Photo By: Mel Fechter

Mentoring Mankind with Memories and Musings

Jun 23,   Spring and Summer in Shangri La
Mar 20,   Adventures in Cyber Dating
Mar 13,   Stories of WWII are Fading Fast
Feb 22,   Canst Thou Protest Too Much?
Jan 26,   New Medical Paradigm On Horizon
Jan 16,   COLLEGE DAZE Is On the Horizon
Jan 10,   My Book Is On Its Way to Publication
Dec 18,   Red Letter Days Mark Milestones
Dec 17,   Today Was a Red Letter Day
Dec 1,   the 2nd Year of My Voyage is Over
Nov 20,   I Find Family and Friends at Hallmark
Nov 5,   My Book From the Male Viewpoint
Oct 12,   Music & Movies Mark My Milestones
Sep 18,   My New Life Appears on the Horizon
Aug 23,   Life is a Pathway with Many Forks
Aug 21,   The Importance of Doing My Best
Aug 4,   Life Imitates Hello Myrmidon
Aug 1,   Writing a Book Has Changed My Life
Jun 13,   Plants are Amazing Creatures
May 25,   Will You Accept My Apology?
May 1,   A Journal is a Window on Your Life
Apr 30,   A Road Trip to Shangri La
Apr 25,   Movies as Matchmakers
Apr 23,   Me at Seventy-Three!!!
Apr 19,   Make Time for Your Friends
Apr 14,   Can One Make a Difference?
Apr 9,   a snipit from HELLO MYRMIDON
Apr 1,   What Price Glory, Sweat, Tears
Mar 30,   To Retrieve or Not Retrieve
Mar 29,   Discourse on Decisions
Mar 25,   Memory Retrieval
Mar 24,   I Join the World Community
Mar 22,   Website Lessons
Mar 3,   My Miracles, Part 2
Mar 2,   My Miracles, Part 1
Feb 9,   Phones of Old, Part 2
Feb 8,   Phones of Old, Part 1
Feb 7,   Twitterpated!!!
Jan 25,   Jacob and Esau, Part 2
Jan 24,   Jacob and Esau, Part 1
Jan 10,   A New Goal?
Jan 9,   My Earliest Memories
Dec 31,   2016: Successes and Failures
Dec 30,   2016: My Self-Discovery
Dec 28,   I Finally Hear My Angels
Dec 27,   Angels and Me
Dec 26,   Angels Inspire Me
Dec 24,   the Littlest Angel
Dec 23,   Story of My Name Part 3
Dec 22,   Story of My Name Part 2
Dec 21,   Story of My Name Part 1
Dec 19,   Prior Challenges Part 2
Dec 17,   Prior Challenges Part 1
Dec 16,   My Website Challenge
Dec 15,   Astrological Review of 2016
Dec 14,   North Coast Winter
Dec 13,   an Angelic Intervention
Dec 12,   Birth of HELLO MYRMIDON
Dec 11,   Christmas Lights Fade
Dec 10,   Christmas Art Project
Dec 9,   Finding a Perfect Tree
Dec 7,   Christmas with KW
Dec 6,   Christmas around the World
Dec 4,   Mom’s Story Part 2
Dec 3,   Mom’s Christmas Story Part 1
Dec 1,   My First Blog

Guest Blogs

Mar 24,   SusanDay on Being a Grandparent

2nd Dec Ghosts of Christmas Past

Can you believe it? I still try to reach for the #1 to begin writing the year. That seems to be a metaphor for much of my life. I was more comfortable when our world was not so ruled by technology, so I still have no cell phone. But what am I complaining about, imagine how my mom felt about computers and men on the moon. She was born in 1907, and was riding home one day in a horse drawn buggy when she was 5 yrs old. The horse spooked while they were stopped to let her off, and she broke her leg when it got caught in the buggy wheel. It boggles the mind to think of going from a world like that with no cars to one that saw men drive a rover around on the moon. More than half her life was already gone when as a child I remember telephones with cranks to call someone on your party line, or signal the operator to ask “number please”so you could tell her “305-J please”. And long distance calls were audibly routed through many stations to complete the call. Now we can instantaneously contact someone half the world away on the internet, and view them in real time as we talk. It makes you wonder what changes are ahead that will be mind boggling as well, and how oldsters at the time will cope with them.

As this brand new Christmas season begins, I have been thinking about how Christmas was for us as kids growing up. I recall very little excitement around the holidays. We always had a tree, even when we lived in the trailer while my mom went to school after my dad died, where we had no room to store decorations or money to buy new ones. So it was a table top tree, with no lights. Mom used her spool of pink hair ribbon to make several streamers the length of the tree, and then tied them together at the top with a bow. They streamed down over the tree like a waterfall. Then she got out the spools of thread from her sewing basket and we tied them on the tree with colored yarn. Even the empty wooden spools got used by coloring them with crayons.

Why do I remember that tree so well, and not the presents that were under it? No idea. But it is a good example of how Mom managed to provide us with the traditions in spite of difficulties. My sister tells of asking Santa for a chemistry set for several years to no avail. Santa apparently felt it was too dangerous for her. My sister said finally one Christmas she realized she didn’t want it anymore, and it left her feeling a sense of mourning. I don’t remember wanting anything in particular, but I always knew I would get some socks, and a blouse. Santa always wanted me to be well dressed I guess, because he continued to give me blouses until he went to heaven with Mom a few years ago. As a teen I remember happily getting things for my hope chest.

One present I do remember was from my junior high years when my adult brothers marched in one day with an American Flyer electric train. Wow. The only problem was that they were the ones who always got to put it up, and play with it. But each year they brought us new pieces for it, so we really enjoyed it. I still have it, lock, stock, and locomotive, so when our new house becomes a reality there will be a special place for the tree and the train beneath it again. Too bad my brothers won’t be there to see it. After we moved out of the trailer we always had a record player, so Bing and Perry and others would always be playing during the holidays. I still have those actual records too, and a player, although a more recent one has replaced the original. I am sure they will fill our new home with those same melodies.

I always loved the lights on the tree, especially the bubble ones. They disappeared from stores for a lot of years but have subsequently made a comeback, so I am sure there will be bubblers on the tree as well. Why is it I only remember such silly little things? In Hello Myrmidon I hope to have a sketch of a photo of the Christmas tree in 1952 when my sister and I got dolls and buggies for Christmas. I actually have no other recollection of that Christmas except that photo, even though it was the last Christmas we had with my dad. I was almost 9 at the time, so I should remember something, but I don’t. I guess that really shows that although the traditional trappings were kept for our whole childhood, the real spirit of the season was always muted.

I was wondering about why that was today as I woke up, and it occurred to me to try to recall what my mom told me about Christmases while she was growing up. Many things came to light for me, and I began to understand why we didn’t get as excited about Christmas as other kids did. That will be the subject of my next trip through the archives. It is not a particularly cheery story but I think it will be worth telling.


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