Sunday, December 23, 2007

A few of my favorite things

Today I was wandering around downtown, enjoying the last minute holiday hustle & bustle. As I was leaving a shop, I heard a little girl behind me (she was probably about 3 or 4 years old) kinda mumbling to herself very slowly and without much intonation ... it took me a second to understand that she was singing "When the dog bites.... when the bee stings... " so I joined in "When I'm feeling bad... I simply remember my favorite things..." and the whole street burst into song and perfectly choreographed dance, swinging around lamp posts and climbing up on benches.... oh wait... that was a movie. ;) Nevermind. It did however give me the idea to list a few of my favorite Christmas things.

First up - my stocking.

It was hand made for me by my aunt who isn't really an aunt but the wife of my dad's best friend... anyway... she made it for me and I LOVE it. My sisters both had red felt stockings with their names on them, and my parents shared a small red stocking that said "Joy" but mine was like the super-delux version. I thought it was sooooo cool! Of course, it's seen better days, namely days before it was given to a very small me. Over the years I've pulled some of the wooden fruit out of the train car, peeled the star off the Christmas tree and attempted to pry open the pages of the bible (I was shocked to learn that it wasn't actually a little bible... just a block of wood painted gold inside the leather-like cover). But it's one of the fondest childhood memories... standing in front of the fire, playing with my stocking, trying to pick things off of it. Our family tradition was to always put an orange & some money in the stocking so that we wouldn't be hungry or poor the following year. I still do that, even though it's just me.

Next we have a few newer favorite things. My mom made this angel for me one year when I was away at college. It's my very first Christmas tree topper, and I've brought it out every year.

The book I actually stole from my sister at some point.... but it was the bad sister so I don't feel bad. ;) It's The Story of Holly and Ivy and if you haven't read it, you really really should. Ivy is an orphan girl looking for her 'grandmother'. Holly is a doll who wants a little girl for Christmas. They both wish.... and they get more than they wished for. It is such a sweet story and I cry every time I read it.

Last but not least is my all time favorite Christmas present. EVER! I really wish I could remember which year I got it, I was somewhere between a senior in high school and maybe sophomore year in college. In any case, we'd all had breakfast and had just started opening presents (yes, we had to wait). A friend from high school had stopped by, her family had already torn through their presents and she was making her rounds. My nephew (the Marine) was only about five or six years old. He was sooooo excited to give me his present. I can just remember his big big smile and how he was just jumping out of his skin for me to open it. When I opened the box I couldn't quite figure out what it was at first, but then I took it out... and there it was... a Santa sleigh velcro-wrist-strap tape dispenser. I laughed so hard... and my friend who was there started laughing. My family didn't see what it was so I showed it off and my mom told me "He picked that out himself - just for you" And I just can't even describe how excited my nephew was, he was just smiling and launging with us. I swear, I laughed until I was crying. It's just soooo... SANTA SLEIGH VELCRO-WRIST-STRAP TAPE DISPENSER! I don't know what exactly it was about it that made my nephew think of me, but he did, and that was just the sweetest thing ever.

Maybe you had to be there. But those are a few of my favorite Christmas things... and they make me feel very happy indeed.


Bezzie said...

Ha ha! Great story about the tape dispenser!

And I *love* Holly & Ivy. It's my mom's fave too.

Magatha said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Magatha said...

What a great post! My favorite Christmas present ever was a small child's electric Singer sewing machine. It came with its own sixties flowered suitcase case, thread and accessories. I made a ton of stuff on that little machine.
I'll never forget the little booklet of fantasy Christmas stories that came with it.