Strands of twinkling lights, resembling icicles, dangle from the eves. Christmas trees put on a colorful light show, dance and serenade the neighborhood as I stroll down memory lane.
This time of year, more than any other, is when my mind races back to Christmases past when I was young, and when my children and grandchildren were little. I can’t say for sure who was more excited.
Their countdown to Christmas began before Thanksgiving. Every sighting of Santa only added to their breathless anticipation.
We’d hit the mall and line up to have their photos taken with the Jolly Old Elf. From a little one’s view, he’s a big guy. Some kids wail. Some squirm to avoid sitting on his lap. Others come prepared with a list, requesting gifts for themselves or someone in their family.
I was reminded of those days when I saw a photo of Abigayle, Sean and Jessi’s girl, sitting on Santa’s lap.
Bright blue eyes full of wonder, Abigayle was in awe as she stared up at the bearded, kindly, grandfatherly gent in the red and white suit.
Her plans to ask for anything for Christmas hit a snag. Maybe, Abigayle was too star-struck to do so. Or, perhaps, the obstacle was: she couldn’t. She’s only 11 months old and her vocabulary is limited to: Mama and Dada.
How I envy her parents and all those who are building memories with their little ones.
This is a season that engages all the senses.
For those now experiencing their own Winter Wonderland, there’s a chill in the air as snow blankets the trees, houses and yards. Logs crackle in the fireplace. The smell of apple pies cooling on the counter is just one of the many tasty temptations this time of year.
My favorite part, when our girls were little, was when we’d bake cookies. They would carefully decorate them with icing. Naturally, they had to sample a few as the cookies cooled. Then, they’d put some cookies on a plate along with a glass of milk for Santa.
They’d leave a short note for Saint Nick and then go to bed. As Nat King Cole sings in “The Christmas Song,” “Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow will find it hard to sleep tonight.”
In the morning, they’d rush to check out the gifts under the tree and they’d pause to read Santa’s note to them.
Our wish for you and yours, like the song: “Although it’s been said many times many ways, Merry Christmas to you.”
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Music video: Nat King Cole singing “Christmas Song” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__kQ1PCP6B0
Main Photo – Santa and Abigayle – Sean and Jessi’s girl, photo permission from her parents, Dec. 2013
Photo – Christmas trees – taken Dec.9, 2007, by Sjncousin http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6e/Beautiful-christmas-lights-11.jpg/531px-Beautiful-christmas-lights-11.jpg
Photo – Christmas and cookies – taken Dec. 23, 2010, by Till Westermayer from Freiburg, Germany http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9b/Christmas_cookies_%26_decoration.jpg/640px-Christmas_cookies_%26_decoration.jpg