What is your favorite Christmas/holiday memory?

  • captproton

    Posts: 316

    Dec 05, 2009 12:06 PM GMT
    My dad died when I was five, so growing up with no father or male influence around was very difficult.

    But my fondest memories of my childhood primarily involve Christmas, maybe because the holiday held the promise for a better new year.

    I remember one time my younger sister and I got bored shopping with our mom and snuck off to a nearby window display. It didn't have a locked entry, so we walked onto a set with a reindeer playing a piano and a Santa standing nearby.

    I sat at the piano and pretended to play, with robotic moves of course, and my sister just stood off to the side staring into space.

    Soon, a small crowd gathered at the window. I guess we were convincing because no one reacted until I stood up and took a bow.

    It wasn't long before the store clerks found out what we were doing. They shooed us out of the window and the shopping excursion was over. My mom was mortified, but later congratulated us on our creativity.
  • hdurdinr

    Posts: 699

    Dec 05, 2009 1:44 PM GMT
    Ha ha - that sounds like it was fun! - I used to get really excited about Christmas when I was little - but my favorite memory is actually a mellow one of me lying under the christmas tree looking up at the lights and decorations through the branches, with my family in the room watching tv with a fire going. I still love the smell of christmas trees today icon_smile.gif
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    Dec 05, 2009 2:13 PM GMT
    Christmas 1953, when I was 4. Yes, my memory reaches back that far, even earlier.

    When I went to sleep Christmas Eve there was no tree up in the house, and I watched TV in a parlor until shooed off to bed. The outside of our house had lights up, and a few other minor decorations in the house, but I wondered where the big tree was.

    I woke up before dawn, and tip-toed out through the house, hoping that Santa had already come, that I wouldn't run into him and spoil everything. A few small tabletop Christmas trees that were left turned on lit my way in the dark, and the first odd thing I saw was that the double French doors to the TV parlor were closed, which they never were. I had to investigate this.

    I opened the doors, and found -- Christmas. My parents had stayed up almost all night and done it all, like elves. Brought a live tree in they had stashed earlier in the garage and decorated the whole thing. It sat in the middle of a white mountain, down which miniature figures skied. At the base of the snowy mountain was a whole village, with skaters on a frozen pond, and running around the village were the tracks of a brand new Lionel train set, passing through a tunnel behind the tree.

    And everywhere throughout the room were piled toys and other gifts, all unwrapped from their boxes and displayed, a custom my parents continued for many years. It was like the whole room itself was a gift box, that I had opened with the French doors. I ran from item to item, unable to take it all in at once. There was a pedal tractor I could ride, and a sled, and a gas service station complete with cars, and too many things to list here. But for years I had the photos taken later that morning by my parents when they awoke, to help me remember most of them.

    And that was my favorite Christmas, that years later I recreated for my own sons, identical to what my parents had done.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Dec 05, 2009 2:19 PM GMT
    Well let me say I have a number of AWESOME Christmas memories, mostly compliments of my parents, especially my mother who went out of her way to make some amazing memories... she was very successful.

    Most of my earliest memories are of Christmas decorations and very warm moments. I remember when I was 4 or 5 looking at Christmas lights from my bedroom windows at home before going to bed. We then lived in a split level the my parents had built and it was just one of those moments you dont' forget.

    Probably a couple of my best early memories..... One when I was 5 on Christmas morning.. opening gifts in our living room. I was so taken with
    the toy cars (and a "garage" to fix those toy cars). It was awesome some of the things that garage could do.. once batteries were added!

    The other great memory was when I was about 10 on Christmas Eve. We had some family friends over and my older brother and I gave a little "skit" for my parents and those friends. I remember peering out from behind the Christmas tree and seeing how much my mother enjoyed it all.
  • drypin

    Posts: 1798

    Dec 05, 2009 2:47 PM GMT
    Although I was highly frightened by anyone in a Santa costume (probably knowing what a "bad boy" I'd been throughout the year), my memories are a mixture of positive experiences with my immediate family and chaotic ones with my greater family.

    One story my mother likes to tell is the year my parents told us not to wake them until the sun came out. Of course, Christmas morning was overcast, so they finally woke around 10:30 a.m. to wonder why we didn't wake them and find us sitting crosslegged in front of the tree with tears in our eyes, because we feared Christmas would never start.
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    Dec 05, 2009 3:03 PM GMT



    lol Jamaican Christmases in Canada. Well, they were always full of people arguing, laughing and tons of drama. Boxes of exotic goodies from Jamaica that always made it through Customs. Lol, nothing illicit. (though that would have made for mellower Christmases, all right.)

    Favourites? Two big ones. My sis ( very talented artist) drew 8 x 11 pics of every dog Bill had ever owned to make a gallery. He cried so much I got alarmed. LOVED that!

    Going through downtown Vancouver handing $20 bills to every panhandler and homeless person we saw on the street. The reactions were breathtaking, and extremely humbling.


    -Doug
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    Dec 05, 2009 3:08 PM GMT
    The large family gatherings.

    And my three older Italian aunts, singing and choreographing to the tune of the Village People's YMCA, and not having a clue as to what the song really meant.

    Priceless.
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    Dec 05, 2009 3:17 PM GMT
    ROFL KissingPro!
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    Dec 05, 2009 3:28 PM GMT
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZThrYCy9Zzo

    how do you post a link??

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    Dec 05, 2009 5:16 PM GMT
    My greatest memory of Christmas was when I was 19. It should have been one of the most depressing ones ever, but it actually was the one that I felt the happiest. We had a bad ice storm that year so nobody had any power and at my mothers house it was also freezing.
    A month before Christmas day, my mother called me crying. She told me not to worry about buying her or my step dad anything because they couldn't afford to buy any of kids presents due to a recent job loss. Now since I was 19, I didn't really care about getting anything, but it broke my heart to see my mother so upset. I took it upon myself to play santa that year.
    Now I have two sisters, one brother, and three step brothers, and of course I had to buy for everyone I normally buy for, so I knew I would have to manage my money very well over the next month. I lucked out and found many great deals at all the stores where I and my siblings shop. I was able to buy everybody 8-10 gifts and they were all gifts I knew they would love. I, of course, had to buy myself gifts too so it would look like my mother bought them and not me.
    So on christmas eve, I spent the night at my mom's house. At 2 in the morning I woke up and went out to the trunk of my car and grabbed all the gifts. Luckily I was smart enough to wrap them before I came to her house. I completely filled the living room with presents. On each gift, I wrote from Santa, just as my mother has always done ever since I was born,
    I went back to sleep and woke up around 11 This was strange because my mother always made us get up early around 7 or 8. I went upstairs and she was making breakfast for everyone. She came over to me and hugged me and said thank you. Then she started crying, which of course made me tear up. I have never felt so happy and so proud on Christmas day.
    Even though that day could have been a very sad and depressing one, I was able to turn it into one of the best ever. That is the magic of Christmas. To this day the only people who know I bought the gifts are my mother, step father, older sister, and myself. Christmas has always been my favorite holiday and that one will be one I will never forget.
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    Dec 06, 2009 5:36 AM GMT
    My favourite Christmas memory was when I took the initiative at 16 to stop celebrating this season of greed.

    I can now acknowledge it is simply the birthday of Jesus Christ, sing happy birthday Jesus, have a piece of cake and go to bed. No silly societal or family expectations to submit to for the sake of pretending to be full of love.

    People so critical of religion often forget this is a religious holiday and I have quite a chuckle when my Muslim and antichrist friends celebrate it for the sake of getting a present.
  • FloridaGuy71

    Posts: 93

    Dec 06, 2009 5:45 AM GMT
    erector17 said My greatest memory of Christmas was when I was 19. It should have been one of the most depressing ones ever, but it actually was the one that I felt the happiest. We had a bad ice storm that year so nobody had any power and at my mothers house it was also freezing.
    A month before Christmas day, my mother called me crying. She told me not to worry about buying her or my step dad anything because they couldn't afford to buy any of kids presents due to a recent job loss. Now since I was 19, I didn't really care about getting anything, but it broke my heart to see my mother so upset. I took it upon myself to play santa that year.
    Now I have two sisters, one brother, and three step brothers, and of course I had to buy for everyone I normally buy for, so I knew I would have to manage my money very well over the next month. I lucked out and found many great deals at all the stores where I and my siblings shop. I was able to buy everybody 8-10 gifts and they were all gifts I knew they would love. I, of course, had to buy myself gifts too so it would look like my mother bought them and not me.
    So on christmas eve, I spent the night at my mom's house. At 2 in the morning I woke up and went out to the trunk of my car and grabbed all the gifts. Luckily I was smart enough to wrap them before I came to her house. I completely filled the living room with presents. On each gift, I wrote from Santa, just as my mother has always done ever since I was born,
    I went back to sleep and woke up around 11 This was strange because my mother always made us get up early around 7 or 8. I went upstairs and she was making breakfast for everyone. She came over to me and hugged me and said thank you. Then she started crying, which of course made me tear up. I have never felt so happy and so proud on Christmas day.
    Even though that day could have been a very sad and depressing one, I was able to turn it into one of the best ever. That is the magic of Christmas. To this day the only people who know I bought the gifts are my mother, step father, older sister, and myself. Christmas has always been my favorite holiday and that one will be one I will never forget.



    That is beautiful story.. I got a little choked up reading it. This is what Christmas is all about..I'm sure you're Mother is proud of what a great son she raised.
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    Dec 06, 2009 5:53 AM GMT
    erector17 said My greatest memory of Christmas was when I was 19. It should have been one of the most depressing ones ever, but it actually was the one that I felt the happiest. We had a bad ice storm that year so nobody had any power and at my mothers house it was also freezing.
    A month before Christmas day, my mother called me crying. She told me not to worry about buying her or my step dad anything because they couldn't afford to buy any of kids presents due to a recent job loss. Now since I was 19, I didn't really care about getting anything, but it broke my heart to see my mother so upset. I took it upon myself to play santa that year.
    Now I have two sisters, one brother, and three step brothers, and of course I had to buy for everyone I normally buy for, so I knew I would have to manage my money very well over the next month. I lucked out and found many great deals at all the stores where I and my siblings shop. I was able to buy everybody 8-10 gifts and they were all gifts I knew they would love. I, of course, had to buy myself gifts too so it would look like my mother bought them and not me.
    So on christmas eve, I spent the night at my mom's house. At 2 in the morning I woke up and went out to the trunk of my car and grabbed all the gifts. Luckily I was smart enough to wrap them before I came to her house. I completely filled the living room with presents. On each gift, I wrote from Santa, just as my mother has always done ever since I was born,
    I went back to sleep and woke up around 11 This was strange because my mother always made us get up early around 7 or 8. I went upstairs and she was making breakfast for everyone. She came over to me and hugged me and said thank you. Then she started crying, which of course made me tear up. I have never felt so happy and so proud on Christmas day.
    Even though that day could have been a very sad and depressing one, I was able to turn it into one of the best ever. That is the magic of Christmas. To this day the only people who know I bought the gifts are my mother, step father, older sister, and myself. Christmas has always been my favorite holiday and that one will be one I will never forget.


    Thats great man, thats a great story of giving.

    I think for me coming down to the family room and seeing our "Santa" gift was always a highlight. As per Red Vespa's story any gift from Santa was set up for immediate use and not wrapped. My mum always had/has the kids experience in mind, my nieces and nephews experience a xmas wonderland at her home.

    Xmas eve and listening to our Dad read the Christmas story from Luke is also something I cherish as a memory.
  • FloridaGuy71

    Posts: 93

    Dec 06, 2009 6:07 AM GMT
    My Mother always made Christmas special when I was kid.. the smell of the live tree, decorating the house, baking cookies.

    My earliest favorate memory is Me, My Mother and 3 Sisters spending Christmas at my grandparents. I was probably about 5 or 6. We had the traditional christmas eve fish dinner (polish). It was always a tradition that after dinner we were each allowed to open one gift from under the tree. Us, being kids, would always be anxious to open "just one more"... and would beg our grandmother "please...please". Well, Nanny liked her Yuengling (she was always a happy drunk).. she would say, go down the celler and get me another bottle, then we can open another one. Well, this went on all night long. Before we knew it all the gifts from under the tree unwrapped and Nanny was in her chair smiling. Everyone (including my Mother) just laughed about it.. and of course, this didn't include the toys that Santa left the next morning.
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    Dec 07, 2009 5:48 AM GMT
    not my favourite memory, but looks like he had a good time,

    passed out santa
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    Feb 07, 2010 3:08 PM GMT
    Yes my mother was very proud. I didnt do it because I wanted the attention. She had done so much for me so it was my turn to do something for her. I did it because it was the right thing to do and it's the meaning of christmas. I just wish more people would be more self-less, not only at Christmas, but the rest of the year too.
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    Feb 07, 2010 3:25 PM GMT
    My favourite memory is re-acted each year when my families cats make a new home under the tree.
    My favourite one was when we used to get real trees, and the cats would climb the trees, and knock it over, sometimes ripping a peek hole in the gifts!
    Oh cats and christmas trees. Its a definite advantage for the cats over the dog when competing for turkey leftovers...
    it never usually mattered in the end with left overs because the boxing day turkey sandwich claims ALL scraps!
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    Feb 07, 2010 8:52 PM GMT
    I was one of 6 kids. We used to freak out a bit at Christmas with all of the excitement, especially the presents. OK, call us shallow.

    So, I was about 6 yrs old, and all of us kids woke up early to open our presents. Dad said we could do so, once the 7 o'clock bells rang at the church nearby. So, the bells ring, and pandemonium ensues. Wrapping paper flying everywhere. Presents! An orgy of sorts.
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    Feb 08, 2010 3:36 AM GMT
    RST2009 saidnot my favourite memory, but looks like he had a good time,

    passed out santa

    Ah, the inspiration for that beloved Christmas song classic, "I Saw Santa Passed Out On The Floor." (same tune as "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus")

    I saw Santa passed out on the floor
    Underneath the mistletoe last night.
    He didn't hear me sneak
    Down to stairs to take a leak;
    He couldn't have heard a hundred reindeer
    Passing by that night.

    Then I saw Santa vomit in his beard
    Making it no longer snowy white;
    Oh, what a laugh it would have been
    If Daddy had only seen
    Santa drink his favorite booze last night.

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    Feb 08, 2010 3:40 AM GMT
    campetrie saidMy favourite memory is re-acted each year when my families cats make a new home under the tree.

    Yeah, our cats would do that, especially any kittens that happened to be in the house that year, treating the tree like a jungle-gym set. They never knocked over the tree, but some rare and expensive glass ornaments met their demise. icon_sad.gif
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    Feb 08, 2010 3:58 AM GMT
    Aren't the Holiday's over??? Why are we here again?!?!?!?!?
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    Feb 08, 2010 4:00 AM GMT
    a1972guy saidAren't the Holiday's over??? Why are we here again?!?!?!?!?

    Bah-humbug!
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    Feb 08, 2010 4:00 AM GMT
    icon_lol.gif
  • barriehomeboy

    Posts: 2475

    Feb 08, 2010 4:05 AM GMT
    My grandmother was a Finnish girl of 16, and her husband was an older English bloke of 26. Their love nest was a log home in the wilderness of northern Canada in the 1920's. On their first Christmas together, he worked late on the railroad and came home on a dark stormy night, at midnight, to find an axe outside a locked door door and a note tacked to saying "You're not getting in without a Christmas Tree." The tradition in our family is to decrorate the tree on the 24th to commemorate his success in finding a tree in the dark, and spawning the rest of us.
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    Feb 08, 2010 4:17 AM GMT
    barriehomeboy said...The tradition in our family is to decrorate the tree on the 24th to commemorate his success in finding a tree in the dark, and spawning the rest of us.

    I presume the second task also performed in the dark? icon_wink.gif