Wicked Shadows of Christmas Past

Friends, today we are sharing memories of Christmas past.

Sherry: I was just a bit over two and a half in the photo below. My sister sits behind me. The first picture is before our presents were open and the second after. I think the mixer and bowl is still at my mom’s house. I loved dolls and that little piano. You can also see a doll house behind the rocking horse. We adored it. I think this might have been at my grandparent’s farm in Missouri and the rocking horse was for my cousin.

Edith: I know somewhere in the morass I have a pic or two of me as a little kid at Christmas but I have no idea where. So this one, from Christmas Eve 1992, will suffice. Husband at the time (him with hair), me (with brown hair), and adorable sons Allan and John David in the pajamas I sewed for them, complete with night caps. They LOVED those night caps! My grandmother always sewed us new nightgowns for Christmas. We got to open one gift on Christmas Eve and it was always hers, so I was passing on a family tradition.

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Barb: This is my son, Rob, age five, and my daughter, Kate, age two-and-a-half, dressed up for their first time at the Boston Ballet’s Nutcracker Suite. I wanted to take Rob, who I thought was old enough, but my husband bought four tickets, including Kate. I was mad. The tickets were expensive, and I wanted to see the ballet. “You’re the one walking the floor with her in the lobby!” I said. There was some drama before we left. Kate had decided that to go to something fancy like this, ladies required a pocketbook, so she was bringing her bright yellow Fisher-Price one along. The plastic powder compact was in it, but not the powder puff! She ended up bringing a cloth diaper along and dabbing her nose with it throughout the performance. Needless to say, I was entirely wrong, and she sat, rapt, through the entire performance (with a bribe of Junior Mints at intermission). Rob slept through the second act.

It all became a tradition, and we went for many, many years. Always with the Junior Mints and always with Rob sleeping through the second act. One year, I was enough of a donor to the Boston Ballet that we got invited to a dress rehearsal–of only the second act. I thought, at last, Rob will see it! But, true to form, he slept through that, too.

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Jessie: I am lucky enough to be the custodian of a vintage tree topper that my great grandparents bought for their own tree sometime in the middle of the last century. Every year it is the last item to be added to our Christmas tree. It is a rite of passage for our kids to reach an age when they entrusted with the task of placing it upon the tree. This is a photo taken last year of my son Theo doing the honors.

 

 

Hennrikus family 1994Julie: In 1995, maybe it was 1994, my sister Kristen and I lived in Charlestown, MA. Our youngest sister came up to visit with our parents, and her boyfriend Glenn. It was the first time we met Glenn, who became a member of the family in 1997. Anyway, I got the family tickets to the Christmas Revels at Sanders Theatre. I gave the visitors the orchestra seats, and Kristen and I sat back in the mezzanine. The Revels are a wonderful tradition, part of which is the end of the first act where the lead player (then the founder John Langstaff) comes into the audience, hands someone the end of a scarf, and leads them into a Lord of the Dance conga line. He grabbed my father first, and Dad brought up the rest of the family. For as long as I live, I will never forget my future brother-in-law getting up and dancing with my family. This picture is from a dinner at our place later that night.

Friends, any memories of Christmas or holiday past you’d like to share?

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About J.A. Hennrikus/Julianne Holmes

J.A. (Julie) Hennrikus writes the Clock Shop Mystery Series under the name Julianne Holmes. JUST KILLING TIME, the first in the series, was published in Oct 2015 and was nominated for a BEST FIRST NOVEL Agatha award. CLOCK AND DAGGER was released in August 2016. CHIME AND PUNISHMENT will be released in August 2017. Julie's Theater Cop series will debut in the fall of 2017. A CHRISTMAS PERIL is the first in this series about an ex-cop who runs a theater company. wears two hats. Her short stories have been published by Level Best Books: “Tag, You’re Dead” in THIN ICE, “Her Wish” in DEAD CALM, and “The Pendulum Swings, Until It Doesn’t” in BLOOD MOON. Julie is an arts administrator and arts advocate. She tweets her writing life as @JHAuthors, and her other life as @JulieHennrikus. She is an avid theater goer and a member of Red Sox nation. Her website is jahennrikus.com, and she blogs with WickedCozyAuthors.com and KillerCharacters.com.

16 thoughts on “Wicked Shadows of Christmas Past

  1. How lovely! Every vignette above evokes a memory of some of my Christmases in the past! I would give you a sound track – we sang carols in three and four part harmony sitting looking at the Christmas tree, sang at midnight services, caroled through the town, sang at the retirement home.

  2. For a few years my sister and I had bedrooms linked by a double doorway. My mother thought it would be nice if we had our own “little” tree, which we put in that doorway. My sister was only three when we moved there, and she could never figure out how the lights were turned on and off on that tree. (Can you guess?) It was years before I told her. She still mentions it.

  3. Julie–our whole family went to the Revels in ’97, too. Rob and his new girlfriend Sunny made out in the balcony until my mother told them to cut it out. Now that they’re married and in their mid-thirties, they find the story very embarrassing and we love to tease them about it.

  4. What fun memories!

    I was always the first one awake and would read for a couple of hours until the rest of the family was up. Even as an adult, I would wake up before anyone else. Once my niece was born, I stopped doing that. I guess I no longer felt the need since we had a kid to carry on the tradition.

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