Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Past

The years go by, pages of the calendar are torn off, holidays come and go and our lives progress minute by minute to what we call the future.  As a genealogist, I leap backward into the past, sometimes forgetting the day and time as well as the future.  With that leap comes memories of Christmas past.  The ghost of Christmas Past has never visited me, but in my mind I travel back in time.

One of my fond memories is of the enormous Christmas tree that my family decorated when I was five years old.  It was larger than life and seemed to fill the entire room.  As I grew older the trees grew smaller and shorter.  It wasn't a larger than life tree, I was just a small girl looking up at a large, tall tree.  But what a precious memory that has been.  I can still see the angel on the top and have never seen one like her.

As I decorate my Christmas tree of 2011, memories are conjured up about decorating trees in years past.  There was the thrill of seeing the lights on the tree and hoping that none would burn out.  The ornaments that students gave me still remain precious to me.  There are fragile ornaments that my children made in school.  Rounded out with home made ornaments, they make my tree festive and special.  If only I could find the angel that topped the tree over sixty years ago.

Terry .. Christmas at age 2
On my bookcase I have a collection of Santas.  There is one made of paper that my husband gave me years ago.  Another is an old ceramic Santa.  Then there is the large Santa in regal splendor.   It was a gift I gave to my Mother when she lived in assisted living.  She wanted her room decorated immediately after Thanksgiving.  The next day was not too soon.  I can still see her gently touching the garment of her Santa.  Little did I know that she would pass away less than two weeks later.

Christmas is for all ages.  I love the sights, smells and sounds of Christmas.  It is seeing awe in the eyes of children which we can than return in love through our eyes.  One of my favorite Christmas photographs is of my nephew, Terry.  He was two years ago.  Terry passed from us too soon at the age of 46.

Perhaps conjuring up memories brings moments of sadness, but we can always find love through sadness.  Merry Christmas to all of you ... and to all of you best memories.


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