Remember that Christmas….?Comments Off

July 5th, 2010 by pat | in

Suggested by Joyce and written by Pat:

Christmas was dinner at Nanny ‘s and Grampy’s.  After the fun and frenzy of morning gift opening, the next question of the day was always what to wear  to Christmas dinner.  It was a full day affair, starting with dinner at 12 noon and lasting into the evening with a buffet style supper.  This evening meal always began with the lighting of the evergreen candles, and ending with the lighting of the Christmas chime candles.

Oh, so many dear memories:  her fresh Christmas  tree, later replaced by one of those new fangled, artificial ones, which really did look like Charlie Brown’s tree;  there was “Old Morris” and, also, Mrs. Clark, some of  many  guests over the years, because Grampy couldn’t stand for someone to be left alone on Christmas Day; a beautifully set dinner table (including a rough cotton tablecloth, screen-printed with poinsetta’s) which  expanded  over the years to accommodate their growing family; the table groaning with deliciously prepared dishes, a huge turkey and a variety of desserts featuring Nanny’s own Christmas Plum Pudding with Sauce.   But, disturbingly, we began to hear Nanny say she didn’t know how much longer she could continue having Christmas Dinner.  Trying not to hear that, we put our heads down and kept going from year to year,  hoping we could put off the inevitable.  And so another 10 years passed by and we thought our plan was working – Nanny would go on for ever being the center of our Christmas celebrations.  But, of course, they did stop and that first year was heart-breaking.

Instead, Nanny and Grampy began being hosted, in turn, by Evelyn and Joyce and their families.  And those wonderful Nanny and Grampy Christmas dinners of our childhood went into precious memory to be pulled out and re-lived each holiday season.  There would be cries of  “Remember the huge turkey Nanny always cooked?”, “Remember when Nanny started her Christmas baking?”, “Remember that scraggy, little Christmas tree she pulled out, year after year?”; “Remember when Nanny started saying this was her last Christmas dinner but she kept going for another 10 years?”  “Remember….?”.  What we didn’t know, and just recently found out, was that during those additional 10 years, Uncle Albert, Joyce’s husband, had taken on all those preparations himself, not saying anything to us, simply enjoying our pleasure in the continuation of that wonderful, family tradition.  Thanks, Uncle Albert, for the gift of those 10 additional happy years!

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