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Holiday Memories ... Blog Giveaway Contest

Last Tuesday my blog hit a milestone with the 10,000th visitor since I started the blog at the end of August this year. Even though a couple of artists got in touch with me, thinking perhaps they had won the "Christmas Surprise" package I had planned for the 10,000th visitor, it turns out that the 10,000th visitor will remain a "mystery".

My "Holiday Surprise" goodie package still wants to brighten someone's day when they receive it in the mail, so here's what we are gonna do...

Leave a treasured holiday memory in the Comments section to this post! You have some time to think about it. This "holiday memory" contest will close on Saturday, December 6 (St. Nicholas Day). The names of those who have left a favourite memory will be put in a santa hat and the winner's name will be drawn. All you'll need to do is to check back starting Dec. 7 to see if you have won and get in touch with me. If I haven't heard from the winner within three days, another name will be drawn. So please remember to check back.

Here are some of my favourite memories to help get you into the spirit ...

It can be a Christmas memory from your childhood, perhaps a toy you received that you just loved. I still remember the doll I received when I was five. Oh, I just loved that doll to bits. We went on many adventures together over the course of a couple of years. It was a sad day when she finally fell apart from so much lovin' and had to go to doll heaven.

It can be a holiday memory from your teenage years. I met my first, really serious boyfriend at a New Year's Eve dance. It was THE enchanted evening that many a teenage female with raging hormones dreams about (na, you're not going to get the details LOL). You know, the day when Prince Charming finally arrives to sweep her off her feet! He did too... for about two years....wonder where he is now?

Perhaps it is a humourous memory of a family Holiday dinner... like the time my Dad asked my little brother to say grace before we "attacked" the turkey.

Bobby (as he was known then) said "Grace"!

That was it.

We waited and waited... nothing. "Aren't you going to say grace?, said Dad. "Gosh Daddy you said to say Grace so I did. Can I have some peas please!"

We all burst out in great gales of laughter. The look on his face told us he didn't have a clue as to why we were laughing so hard. Mom passed him the peas!

Wishing for snow on Christmas Eve and my wish came true! It was magic walking home from the skating rink that crisp, December evening... with my tongue stuck out to catch the snowflakes!

Seeing the Christmas lights in Paris for the first time... The Christmas market in Germany with it's wonderful smells and delicious goodies all waiting to be sampled... Baking Christmas cookies with my (at the time) two year old son.....there was more flour on us than in the cookies!

Enjoy your trip down memory lane!

Sharon

43 comments:

  1. When I was about 8 years old we traveled from Ohio to Oklahoma to spend Christmas with my aunts and their families and my grandparents. Since we went by car we didn't have a lot of room for presents. We got a couple small gifts and were happy with them. That Holiday was truly about family, fun, and good times. My brother and I were so busy playing with our cousins we didn't miss the many gifts we usually got.


    Teresa

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  2. My favorite holiday...
    Packing it up and my family (seven of us) traveling to my grandparents on Christmas Eve (my birthday). There, the house was crowded with tons of family members.
    We'd make hot chocolate and go out singing carols all over the neighborhood. I always remember that my grandmas tree seemed ginormous to me as a child and there seemed to be squillions of presents under it. We'd all try to stay up super late with our flashlights ready looking out for the big guy....
    Oh the memories that were made...

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  3. How would you know if you were the 10,000th person?

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  4. ONE CHRISTMAS when I was young, my patents had gotten laid off work and with 5 kids mom didnt know what she was going to do for Christmas, she seemed so sad. we were all baking cookies and there was a loud knock on the back door , as kids always do all 5 of us went running
    there on the back porch was one of those huge boxes that Washers come in with a big red bow on it
    inside were all kids of wrapped presents and all kinds of cookies, fruits, nuts and all kinds of groceries, mom stood there and cried..
    to this day we still have no idea who brought us all those special things.
    so now I always say if u are a believer good things
    always happen

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  5. In response to Linda's question about how you would know you were the 10,000th person? There is a blog counter on the upper right hand side of this blog. There was also a note that said if you were the 10,000th person, you had won a surprise package and to get in touch with me. I was watching the blog through Feedit at the time (because it was so close) so I know where the 10,000th came from and the time. My attempts to locate this person (who did not get in touch with me)failed. So now everyone has an even steven chance to win the Christmas surprise package! I think that's a pretty good solution, don't you?

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  6. I was a young single mom with little boys. I had been hurt at work earlier that year - and was barely getting by. I had no idea how I was going to get presents for the boys - and I felt so bad. I didn't have money for decorations, so I made a few (sad) paper chains out of notebook paper I had colored green and red. I felt like the worst mom in the world.

    On Christmas Eve, I took the boys to candlelight service at church. We got home and I was wallowing in my self-pity, when someone knocked at the door. It was a couple of police officers who asked my name. I was immediately freaked out, wondering what I could have done. One of the officers left my little front porch and returned a few seconds later with 2 other people I didn't recognize - and ALL 3 of them had their arms FULL of wrapped gifts and grocery sacks!

    I don't know who - or when - or how, but someone had turned my name in to a Secret Santa-type program. There were so many presents it took me forever to unwrap them all - and there were tons of adorable handmade blankets/quilts, sweet outfits (in the right sizes even!), and toys the boys wanted. (My youngest boy was a baby - so he just wanted to chew on paper. lol) The grocery bags included ALL the fixins for Christmas dinner, along with a little recipe book for cooking all the ingredients they delivered. There was also a gift certificate for the grocery store!

    I never found out who turned my name in - or who gave them a list of everything we needed and the right sizes. But every year I think about the kindness and generosity those people showed (spending their Christmas Eve delivering these things!). That was truly a once in a lifetime treat - and it made that Christmas memorable in so many positive ways. I had never fixed a turkey before, and the one they brought was HUGE - and it was only my oldest son and I. But I cooked it too long (?) and dried it out terribly - but we were still eating turkey a couple of times a week in March!! lol

    I hope your holiday season is full of surprises as special as that Christmas was for my family. :)

    Hugs,
    Katherine

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  7. Twenty-eight years ago on Dec 20 I was married in a quaint home wedding. We honeymooned in Colonial Williamsburg. When we arrived at the Williamsburg Inn we received a message that read "mother on her way down."
    I knew my MIL loved my new hubby more than most but thought this a bit ridiculous. What actually happened in our haste to leave and get on our way, we left our suitcases with toiletry articles by the front door. My MIL who worked in reservations at another hotel; had called and was able to make a reservation for my boss and his wife to deliver the items to us. What a surprise to see them at our honeymoon suite front door hours after check-in. We still laugh about that experience to this day. Now we live in Williamsburg and walk the colonial Duke Of Gloucester remembering the yule log run, fires ablaze to warm you along the way, smells of cinnamon and chicken pot pies in the night air, the harpist whose fingers strummed Silent Night, night-time carolers and the note we received on that blistery honeymoon eve.

    My life began during that Christmas season not long ago and continues to this day. Sweeter and more loving than ever with one exception we now cruise the Caribbean for our anniversary.

    Thanks for the walk down memory lane. Merry Christmas to one an all.

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  8. Up until about 10 years ago, we all gathered at my grandmothers house for Christmas Eve. All the families was there, a house full. It was crowded, over 30 people in her small house. She always had pecan pie, sock it to me cake and roasted pecans. She wouldn't let anyone bring anything, this was her time to show her family what they meant to her. By cooking Christmas Eve Dinner. Grandmother is gone now and oh, how I miss that crowded house on Christmas Eve.

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  9. BahHumbug...the Chinese Christmas Tree purchased by the American expat her 1st Christmas in China 2007
    by MidiAna Bilik-Franklin
    I was so excited that Christmas trees (fake ones) were for sale at Carrefour (french supermarket, like Fred Meyers or SuperWalmart)!
    They had a strange little display and the trees were numbered. I'm cheap and our apartment is small and were moving in 45 days, so I wanted the smallest one. The little tabletop, 2ft one that you get in the States. It was number 1. I scoop up box number one that was short and squat like the tree on display. I put it on my cart, grocery shop, and go pay. I speak next to no Chinese and read even less Chinese. The check out lady grumbles something at me about my Christmas tree. I shrug. It doesn't scan so she inputs the code numbers. I pay. I leave. People are pointing at my box and saying stuff. I ignore them. My neighbor from the top floor sees me trying to carry all my groceries and the Christmas tree box and kindly helps me get everything inside. He of course is a police officer. I teach English and live at the Police University in China. I had planned to put up the tree when Indigo (my 14year old) was home, but Wisteria (my 3 year old) was crawling all over the box so I give in and open it up. Wow...what alot of parts for such a little tree. I assemble the tree and realize quickly that all the other parts are actually other trees. Augh. This would be a moral dilemna anywhere. I have 8 trees, I paid for 1. I don't want 8 trees. In America, you'd take your reciept and go to the store and say hey, look I accidently got these trees, and you'd give them back or you'd call the store or if you feel that you'd overpayed, you'd just give away the trees. But I'm not in America. So Chris(my husband) gets home and I tell him what happened. He calls his grad student (that would be a police officer who worked and now is coming back to get a masters). I'm like "Augh...are you trying to send me to jail." Within minutes, his student calls and says the manager of the store is coming to my apartment. Augh!!! Course at this point, I'm like- take all the trees back...yuk, I want no part of this Christmas nightmare! But of course Wisteria is playing in the box. Wisteria loves the box. So here comes the student and "the Christmas vendor". Luckily (or just strange) the manager is not here at my apartment. Apparently the "Christmas vendor" is in charge of giving people a Christmas tree when you want to buy one. His job is to open "the box" and give you the tree. I guess it is similiar to buying a bicycle, you point to the bike you want and you pay and then you get the bike. Apparently Christmas trees are not self service. Furthermore, "the vendor" was in alot of trouble for the whole fact that I took "the box" since he should have been guarding them. The man looked so uncomfortable. It was just awful. And Wisteria just loved that box and started crying when he started to take it. So then to make everything even more uncomfortable the man about starts crying and is insisting that I take an extra tree. Augh!!! Finally he and the student have some loud words and the extra tree is deposited by my door and he leaves. The whole thing was just so embarressing. Afterwords the student said "There is no problem. If the christmas vendor did not bring back the box, he would be punished." In my opinion, the whole thing is a problem and now I don't want anything to do with the Christmas tree or especially the 2cd Christmas tree. Bah humbug. I certainly never intended to cause so much trouble with the little tree and I hope the "Christmas vendor" keeps his job.

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  10. FRUITCAKE!
    When I was 16, I had been pursued by a young man from church who joined the Navy. I was not a bit interested in him (red hair and
    freckles!) but my mother insisted on making a fruitcake and sending it off to make his Christmas on the ship something special. In the meantime, I wrote him that I was sorry, but I was not interested and I hoped he would understand. I got a letter in return that said "After I received your "dear john" letter, I threw your fruitcake overboard." Needless to say, my mother never made another fruitcake for men in uniform!
    Pat

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  11. When I was ten me and my siblings were all finally allowed to go down stairs to see what Santa had brought us. My sister and brothers all had these wonderful little gifts Santa had gotten them and I was looking for my small wonder, under the stockings of coarse. I looked and looked and was about to cry when suddenly I saw it"This giant five foot tall pinkish orange florescant dog named Daisey!" I squelled to the top of my lungs and hugged my new dog. Many years later my daddy told me how he got this gift. He went to the department store on Christmas eve(typical man shopping procrastination sydrome) and couldn't find anything I would like. Then this dog popped up and he knew he had to get it! He had to carry it through the store, and stand in line for what seemed an eternity. All his other late shopper buddies saw him and made fun of him for holding my giant pink Daisey dog. THEY THOUGHT HE MUST BE DRUNK(DAD NEVER DRANK A DROP)! He joyfully bought that dog and I will never forget that Christmas! Sanna

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  12. When one of my younger brothers was about 3 years old my parents bought him a tricycle for Christmas. We kept it at the neighbors house, with other gifts, until Christmas Eve. After my brother went to sleep we put out all the presents, made everything look extra festive, and went to sleep.

    About 2 in the morning my little brother woke up and went to check if Santa had come, and of course he had, so he ran through the house waking everyone up and shouting over and over "Santa's been here" as loud as he could.

    Needless to say, we all got up and celebrated Christmas at 2 in the morning just so we could share in my brother's happiness. The glee and wonder on his face and in his voice is something I will never forget and it still makes me smile 40 years later!

    Katina
    kjkoukla(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  13. My Grandma's wedding ring looked like a ring from a gumball machine and one year for Christmas my grandfather surprised her with a beautiful new wedding ring that I still don't know how he paid for it.She was so surprised that she couldn't speak the whole day,she just smiled.I remember that Christmas very well.

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  14. When I was 8 yrs. old, I went with my dad to Montgomery Ward to pick up the Christmas gifts my mom had ordered. I had asked for, begged for, a life-sized doll. There was a tall box in the group of boxes we picked up. Then my dad stopped at another store, and I stayed in the car while he went in. During that time, I actually had the nerve to open the tall box, to see if it was the doll I'd asked for.

    And yesiree, it totally was. I was thrilled and ecstatic. I also got into a LOT of trouble with my mom when we got home, for opening the box. That was one of my very best
    Christmases, as a child, even though I got in trouble. I think my dad was on my side, and understood what I did, but my mom sure didn't!!!

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  15. The Christmas that sticks out in my head the most is the first Christmas after we'd moved from Michigan to Arizona. I think I was nine. It was so strange to be warm and dry. It didn't feel like Christmas at all.

    Now that I'm older, and living in Michigan again, I sure wish I was living in Arizona again! Now, a warm Christmas would feel just fine to me!

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  16. I remember when I was 8 and wished for a new bike for Christmas. Previously I had always had my brothers old bikes but I wanted a girls bike. There it was Christmas morning all shiny and new-a blue and white CCM girls bike!

    Elaine R
    emrosser@shaw.ca

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  17. I drove out to Montana in a snow storm. Had to borrow my boss's car. But it was the first Christmas in 20 years that I went home and it was the best one ever. My Da's face lit up like the tree. Nice idea Sharon and congrats on your 10,000the visitor. What a milestone. Hugz, Scary

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  18. Several years ago when I was working full time at the local military base..we didn't have a lot of family around and I worked with a lot of single military and couples who had no family here..So we started a tradition of having Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners at different homes, mine included and invited those military and their families who were here without their extended families. We all brought food, ate, had a wonderful time, and played board games the rest of the day. Those were some of the best holidays we celebrated...with those away from home.

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  19. One of my favorite holidays memories is attending Christmas Eve church service with my family and friends. Afterwards we all gather at our friends' house to share laughter, the Christmas spirit and lots of great food.

    Cheryl S.

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  20. My favorite holiday was in 1996, I was pregnant with my daughter and my husband drove us to New Mexico from Tennessee to see my family.
    No one knew we were coming and I hadn't seen any of them in 7 years.
    My sister didn't recognize me at first and my momma cried.

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  21. it was my sisters first christams! she was so excited and played witht he wrapping and boxes more than her actual toys!!

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  22. One of my favourite holiday memories is of the year my grandparents came to visit and my grandma taught me how to make the family favourite holiday cookies. She'd been sending us some every year, but I felt so grown up (I think I was seven or eight) and special that she'd chosen me to teach.

    I don't think anyone else has her shortbread recipe.

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  23. Well, so far my best holiday memory has been this past Thanksgiving and preparing for Christmas the past few weeks. Just last week, All of my family was at my Granny's, and me and my cousin Jessica had a blast singing everything from Christmas carols and Southern gospel, to my Aunt Jody's rendition of Jingle bells. And Jessica even seranaded us with "Me and God" by Josh Turner! Talk about a different thanksgiving!! But to top it off My boyfriend got to come over and we had even more fun playing tag that night.
    Then a week before that was when my Mother, little brother, boyfriend, and I, put my family's tree up. We usually don't have anyone helping us put our tree up, but this year I am with my first boyfriend, and we have almost been together 6 months. People think there must be something wrong seeing as how this is both of our's first "serious" relationship, we are 14 and 16, and we've already made it so long and we haven't broke up once...and don't plan to. He helped us put the tree up, and he fit in just like a part of our family. But the best part of putting the tree up was when I put the angel on top, then got on my knees on the chair to admire it...Eric put his arm around me, and my Mom plugged it in to light it up, and just as she did he turned me and kissed me. It was truly the Christmas tree scene i have been dreaming of since i was a little girl. Helping him put his family tree up two days ago was certainly fun...his Dad cracks me up..and his Mom, who has seemed rather cold to me, actually warmed up after the comment was made about us being together 5 1/2 months. I think she has finally realized I will be around a while :) I know I am hoping I have many more holidays like this. I can't wait for new year's this year ;)

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  24. I remember the year I got my first tape deck, and a stack of tapes to go with it!

    It's a tradition in our family to open one present on Christmas Eve. That was mine.
    I very carefully picked out a song from one of the tapes, got it ready-- and the next morning (at 12:01, because, you know, technically it ~was~ Christmas then!), I turned it on and ran up and down the ahll yelling "Merry Christmas!" to my family.

    As I recall, we children were given breakfast, allowed to open our stockings, and sent outside to play in the back yard while the adults got a bit more sleep!

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  25. One of my favorite memories was just last year. My husand and myself went to visit my daughter, husband and 3 grandchildre who I adore so much..Early Christmas morning, I heard them talking in the one bedroom they were sharing for the night so I went in..They had made this tent and begged me to crawl in with them..There I am past my 50's having to crawl into this tiny tent where we spent our next 2 hours (it was 5 am) singing Christmas carols and talking about everything....hugs, Skye

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  26. Sharon - I hate to piggy back off your blog but I just - well a week or so ago - put this holiday memory up on my blog. My oldest turned 24 the Tuesday before our US Thanksgiving this year. The memory is all about what was almost his first Thanksgiving - http://nickisnook.net/2008/11/25/thanksgiving-24-years-ago/

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  27. When I was in 2nd grade we were living in Midland, Texas. We drove across the border and spent Christmas in this little cheap motel in Mexico. When my sister and I woke up there were pinata's and my favorite gift of a Baby Tender Love (the doll to have at that time). I was so excited that my new baby had breakfast with us at this little diner attached to the motel. I can remember dragging that doll everywhere and she is now in a basket with other childhood memories in one of my guest bedrooms.

    Lesley

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  28. One of my favourite memories was a few years back when we spent the holidays with my in-laws. They had a houseful of cats and no room for a Christmas tree. Rather than disappoint their grandchildren (my kids), they got some paint and some blank cds and, with the kids, painted a mural on the wall in the dining room. The cds were "ornaments" the the kids decorated and then tacked on to the painted tree. They had such a good time and were so proud of that tree.

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  29. My favorite holiday memory is when I was first married and worked Christmas eve night. I came how to a toasty fire and the tree lit up and I think back on that happy uncomplicated time of my life.
    Barb

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  30. I remeber the time I was peeking at presents under the tree and the tree fell over on top of me...My grandma luckily came in and helped me get it back up.. but wait oh no that didn"t stop me later i went peeking again and it fell again and yes she came to the rescue again scolded me this time and threatened to tell my Mom...Well that worked i quit doing that and never did again. On the more serious note I will always remember my Mom rolling out all the huge Nut and poppyseed poticas she made every xmas and new years...They are the yummiest ever!!! They would take her all day to make them. I miss her sooo much at the holidays and the smell of her baking and her fun bird yeast rolls...that looked like birds in a nest...she would shape the bird and its beak and all...and she made fresh apple pie and strudels and we got to have from the leftover crust pie crust cookies...the kind you sprinkle with cinnamon sugar wrap the piecrust in a roll and cut them to rolled cookie size. We could hardly wait for them to get done. She learned to make the best piecrust from a french pastry chef and trust me it was to die for. My gram would make a pastry dough more sweet and fill with ricotta cheese and eggs boil it in cheesecloth and then bake it awhile and then put it in a pan of butter with parmesan breadcrumbs and fry it...The slovenian people and croations call it Strukla. I hope they are making them in heaven for the angels. Merry Christmas blessings to all! Hugs,Ina

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  31. my special memory revolves around a ceramic ornament.

    it was a girl in a red coat with a wite trim. painted on
    she was holding something..i am not sure anymore what that was

    i was always the one who unwrapped that ornament and placed it on the tree...

    i have fond memories of the ornament to this day.

    :)

    thanks sharon for reminding me of the pleasure ...no matter how simple it might be...
    a memory might bring..or a smell will evoke..
    it is the simplicity that brings huge rewards

    happy holidays m'dear

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  32. My father was a photography nut
    (but a good one) and every Christmas when my brother and I
    were little we couldn't just run
    downstairs and see what Santa brought.....we had to wait to come
    down the stairs until Dad has his
    movie camera set up to take our
    pictures.....now I love to look at
    those movies....

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  33. When I was 6 I absolutely adored my first grade teacher!! So much so that I had decided I wanted to be a teacher, too. She would let me have leftover work sheets, pencil stubs, paper clips...anything that she could spare. I would take these treasures home and play school endlessly with my siblings and parents. For Christmas that year I wanted a "teacher" desk. Not any desk, mind you. No, I wanted one of those massive oak or metal numbers with all the drawers. My father was laid off from work that year, and money was especially tight. Of course a "teacher" desk was not at all practical as we had a very small home. My parents tried to persuede me to pick something else to ask Santa for. No, I wanted my desk. Christmas morning when I ran downstairs with my brother and sister...there in the corner was the most magnificent desk I had ever laid eyes on. I had never seen one like it! It was not quite as big as the one my teacher had, but it had a multitude of drawers, some with divided compartments for goodies like pens,clips,rubberbands, etc. It was solid wood, finished in a beautiful deep cherry stain. I screamed on the top of my lungs, "Thank you Santa". It was my favorite gift. How did my parents swing the finances for such an expensive gift? My Mom and Dad went "curb shopping". They had come across a big console television. My Dad spent every waking hour stripping it of its "guts" and reworking the piece so that I could I have my desk. It stayed with me through High School, and into my first apartment. Unfortunately it was lost in a fire several years ago. But that was such a special Christmas for me that year...to actually get my heart's desire was so great. And then when I was older, I understood how my parents struggled that year with Dad not working, and how they weren't sure how they would provide gifts for us kids. That made it even more special! A gift of pure love.

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  34. My favorite Christmas memories are about decorating the tree. Every year, my husband treks out early in December to find the perfect live tree. Our children come home and we decorate while singing along to all the German Christmas music. The kids invite all the friends who have no relatives in town or those whose families don't celebrate Christmas. We sort through all the ornaments and have a good laugh about who made what and when. It's a great start to the season.

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  35. Loved reading these Christmas memories, I have so many Christmas stories but will share 1 with you as requested.
    We always go to Spain and this particular year when Jazz was 4 he put out biscuits, carrots and drinks for Santa and the reindeers. He then went off to bed happy, chatting excitedely to his brother Dwain and sister China. Very soon they fell asleep. About 5 in the morning 3 children were stood beside my bed excited and asking if they could go and see if Santa had left there pressies. Dwain and China dived into their presents, Jazz had other ideas. He looked to where the food and drink had been left the night before and then shouted out"Oh my God Santa has stolen the plates and cups... pointing to where they had been by the fire on a little table; sure enough no plates, no cups... this littel boy was soooooooooo angry. To calm him down we told him to write to Santa and ask him to return them the next night. So he sat down with his dad and wrote as best he could to Santa asking him to return the missing items. He left the note beside the fire and went to bed on Christmas Day night. Boxing day he woke and ran to the fireplace and found the plates and cups returned along with a note from Santa. Santa explained that he was so far behind with his deliveries on Christmas Eve that he had to take the refreshments with him so as not to disappoint all the other boys and girls waiting for their presents. This satisfied Jazz and he still has that letter from Santa in his mementoes box...
    The moral of this story is that if you are a nana or grandad don't put the plates away when you have eaten the biscuits and pies and drunk your drink because you could end up with an irate child.
    May you all have a wonderful, joyful Christmas xxx
    Thank you Sharon for this opportunity to share Christmas memories x
    tried to post this three times, going to try as anonymous
    Dawn goldbettyboop at g mail.com

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  36. I would hate to have my comment go astray after so much typing, to me it is akin to mountain climbing in its level of difficulty.My holiday story is when I was about 10yrs old and not much of a swimmer, just able to tread water(almost,not really). I went to a pool at a seaside resort that had one of those sloped bottoms where one minute you are touching the bottom and the next you are out of your depth.Well you guessed ,that's what happened to me,it was stinking hot and I was having a lovely time, albeit a little nervous,and whamo I am out of my depth and going under for the third time. Instinctively I frantically grabbed hold of the kid next to me who couldn't have been much of a swimmer either as we both went down. I was terrified and got kicked out of the pool for trying to drown someone and banned for the entire summer! I spent many a hot day looking through the fence wishing someone had given me a hug and asked if I was OK instead of throwing me out!

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  37. My favourite memory is of a homemade Christmas. Usually for Christmas we received some clothes, candy and bath salts or similar. This one year, my treasured doll's pram had a makeover. My mum had made a new dress for my doll, sheets for the mattress, a quilt and a pillow with pillow case. It was so beautiful, and I still remember it as my favourite Christmas ever. I try and continue the tradition of a handmade Christmas by making things for my loved ones each year (in addition to bought things).

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  38. Wow, I've enjoyed reading everyone's holiday stories!! Mine is not so "exceptional". It's the memories of the *tradition* of Christmas that I love....the dependable, steadfastness of what happened in my home during the Christmas season. My Mom always baked cookies....and always had a kitchenfull of my friends over to decorate them. I'm afraid most of the nonpareils, Jimminies and crystal sprinkles ended up on the floor! lol. We always went tree shopping on the Eve...and I never worried that we wouldn't find the perfect tree to bring home and decorate...because we did! Then there was the little plastic church with the light inside....how I loved to wind the key so the little music box inside could play its carol. And it was always my "job" to set up the manger after the tree was done.
    So many memories....such good times.
    Doreen aka LuniLadi
    cosenzas@optonline.net

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  39. I was 5 yrs od and due to my parent's divorce, my mother and I had moved back to her home on the farm. I had brought my beloved cat on the trip with us and naturally, she disappeared on the farm. After being gone 6 months, everyone had given up hope of finding her. My mother asked me on Christmas Eve what I wanted most for Christmas. I replied "I want my cat to come home". Suddenly, there was a scratching at the door. We opened the door and there, in the midst of a raging snowstorm, was my beloved cat and three good sized kittens! To this day, I truly believe that was a Christmas miracle! That year, I really got my Christmas wish.

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  40. I have enjoyed reading everyone's stories and can relate to many of them. There are so many memories that come to mind. My Dad worked construction so there were many years my parents struggled to buy gifts for five kids, but we never would have suspected. We always got the things we wanted and there was always a feast with my Mom's famous pies....she was a fabulous cook. Oh how I miss her, especially this time of year. One of my favorite memories is unwrapping my first transistor radio (telling my age here!) While we opened our gifts, my little radio was playing Christmas music in the background. To this day, every time I hear "Little Drummer Boy" it takes me back to that Christmas. And now that the pies are my responsibility, I think of my Mom every year while I'm baking. Of course my pies don't hold a candle to hers!

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  41. My favorite memory is that I got engaged on Christmas Eve. This was 23 years ago and we are still happily married. Have a wonderful Christmas time! Julia

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  42. Back in the days of hardwood and linoleum floors, slippers were a must, especially in the winter.
    As Christmas approached, I would sneak out of bed and being unable to find my slippers, would tip-toe down the cold hall to the living room, where the Christmas tree sat in the corner. I would plug the lights in, sit over the heat register with my nightie tucked under my cold feet and allow the hot air to keep me warm, as I gazed in wonder at the percolating bubble lights and sparkling glass balls which hung near me. On the floor was a stable scene that lost a member every year. With only the virgin and babe left, I wondered about that first Christmas and the meaning of it all.
    When Dad got up to start breakfast, he would shoo me back to bed and tell me that soon the waiting would be over.
    Leslie

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  43. We grew up very poor and to have a tree was hard enough for my parents....so one year, we had the Invisible Christmas tree. No Joke....Dad hung lights fron the ceiling and shaped them into a cone style by attching them to the flooor boards of the old farm house we lived in. Christmas Morning was so exciting for us, Santa even leaves presents under invisable trees! Dad said he would because he would see the most beautiful tree ever, just we all did.
    Paremts huh?
    Tina Swain

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