With Christmas right around the corner, I can’t help but remember the Christmas of yesteryears. Christmas was, is, and prayerfully always will be my favorite holiday. I love the sights, sounds, and feel of it. It’s amazing how certain events can stick with you, and almost make you feel like you just experienced it a day or so before. Well, for me it’s Christmas as a youngster.
I remember the days leading up to Christmas I’d go shopping with my mom. Back then Columbia Street in Bogalusa was a big deal, and Fred’s was the major store. I used to love driving down Columbia Street with all the Christmas decorations and lights. Seeing it in my head now kinda feels like I’m watching an old movie. You couldn’t shop on Columbia Street and not get in the Christmas spirit.
This isn’t Columbia Street but a close reminder from back then 🙂
The night before Christmas, if the temperature had dropped, my whole family (mom, dad, brother, and me) would all sleep in the den. It was warm in there, and my parents didn’t have to worry about trying to heat the whole house. That was so much fun. Knowing everyone I loved was right in one room all warm and toasty was the best feeling ever.
I can remember waking up on Christmas morning and running to the formal living room which is where the Christmas tree was kept. My brother and I would tear into those presents. I knew to expect the latest baby doll and a surprise gift. One year I got a radio and a Whitney Houston cassette. I loved that radio and played it all the time. I’m sure I worked on everybody’s nerves having to hear Whitney Houston playing over and over again LOL!
After we’d open gifts at home, we would put on our new Christmas clothes, pack up the car with more gifts for other family members, and prepare to take off for our thirty-second drive across the street to my grandparent’s house (seriously we did)
That’s when the fun really started. All my aunts, uncles, and cousins would come home for the holidays. My cousins and I played with our new toys. We ate the food my grandmother, mom, and aunts stayed up most of the night preparing. My grandparent’s house was filled with noise and laughter from the youngest to the oldest. I guess that’s why I can’t imagine a quiet Christmas. It wouldn’t feel like Christmas if I didn’t hear talking, laughing, and pots rattling from people going back for seconds or thirds.
Cousins Sheneda and Sobrena Christmas 09′ at our grandparent’s house.
I can’t remember if presents came after or before dinner, but I do know that one thing never changed. My cousins and I all knew we were getting $5 from my grandmother. We did wonder if she’d eventually…maybe move up to $10 when we got older, but nope she stuck with her $5. Hey, it was $5 more than we had LOL!
Christmas is quite different for me now. Instead of trying to force myself to sleep and waking up extremely early, now I go straight to sleep and pray the children will at least sleep past six o’clock. These days, my joy and excitement come from watching my children opening their gifts.
I can say that even though many things have changed, some things remained the same. I don’t wake up early (voluntarily), I don’t get to eat my grandma’s cooking, receive her annual $5, or spend a cozy night with my parents, but every year God has blessed me to still hear and participate in the talking, laughing, and rattling of pots that let’s you know that it is indeed a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!