Christmas Memories



For me and my family, Christmas was always a family time. I know that sounds a bit cliché, but it was the one time of year when everyone was usually together.

My aunt lived in Anchorage, Alaska and she visited my grandmother every Christmas. My first holiday memories are spending the night in Grandma’s big house, every room filled, presents tumbling from under the tree that almost reached the ten foot ceiling. My parents and grandparents always made a big show of going downstairs to make sure Santa had been there. It was a magical time.

The reason I’m thinking about this particular memory is because two weeks ago, I was cleaning out our attic and I stumbled across an old box that’s moved with us a number of times and we’ve never unpacked it. So I slit open the tape and began withdrawing the contents. Mostly I found a bunch of crap that I should have thrown out two moves ago, but under everything else, wrapped in an old blanket, I found the stuffed bear I received one of those memorable Christmases so long ago. He’s missing and eye and is sort of lumpy, probably from over loving, but that doesn’t matter. He was a gift from my grandmother and instead of sitting in the attic he now sits in my grandmother’s rocking chair, the very same one I was rocked in as a child. I wouldn’t generally describe myself as a sentimental person, but maybe it’s time to change that.

Please comment on this post about a Christmas present you thought was gone, but found years later. One lucky commenter will win a ebook copy of Andrew’s book “A Present in Swaddling Clothes” – All winners will be announced on Christmas Day.

Andrew grew up in western Michigan with a father who loved to tell stories and a mother who loved to read them. Since then he has lived throughout the country and traveled throughout the world. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works in information systems for a large corporation. Andrew’s hobbies include collecting antiques, gardening, and leaving his dirty dishes anywhere but in the sink (particularly when writing)  He considers himself blessed with an accepting family, fantastic friends, and the world’s most supportive and loving partner. Andrew currently lives in beautiful, historic Carlisle, Pennsylvania. More about his books at his website.

The BONUS BUMPER PRIZE QUESTION (don’t answer this yet – write them down and I’ll ask you to email them in on Christmas Eve.)

5. What – in the song – were roasting on an open fire?

16 Responses

  1. Aw, what a lovely story,and so appropriate for Christmas. My own Teddy sits on my dresser and he is as old as I am……so he’s a bit thread bear. 🙂

  2. I love that story. I have always loved teddy bears and my daughter’s own Teddy, given to her at birth, has been to college with her (grad and under grad), got married with her and sits now in her new home with her husband. Teddy has that well loved look you describe, Threadbare, repaired many times and flattened. But still he reminds me of that story, The Velveteen Rabbit. So much love has been poured into that bear over 30 years that to me and to my daughter he lives and breathes.

    And please don’t enter me in the contest. I already own a copy of this lovely book. Let someone else have the chance to enjoy it as much as I did.

    • Melanie

      I love that story. I read it to my niece when she was young.

      I’m so glad you liked A Present in Swaddling Clothes.

      Merry Christmas

  3. Not so much a present as a ‘thing’. We have a bell that was always the thing that I put on the tree when I was a child – it turned up when we cleared out my mother’s house and now I put it on our tree!

    • Charlie

      That’s wonderful. I love it when what lost is found. It’s a bit like finding lost treasure.


  4. Not found it again, but somewhere in my parents loft is, I hope, the model donkey and cart that was my favourite out of my many model animals as a child.

    • Stevie

      I understand. I keep hoping a small carved whale I got as a gift years ago will turn up when my folks clean house.


  5. I’m not sure there was anything lost I ever found again, but there was a tradition that I started when I “lost” (read: was disinherited by) my family. I started purchasing one ornament a year for my Christmas Tree – it was an accidental tradition – I couldn’t afford much and was on my own for my first Christmas flying solo, and a friend made me an ornament when she saw I’d decorated my tree solely with candy canes.

    Every year after that, I added one ornament that spoke to me about how the year had gone.

    Now my tree is full. I “found” family and love again, and every Christmas, I can see it.

    • Nathan

      Thank you for sharing that story. It really moved me. I used to get an ornament a year form my aunt growing up and those are still on our tree now. It’s just filled with memories for me.both with my partner and form my childhood.


  6. A warm, sweet but honest story… lovely choice.

    When I was an early teen a friend and I started writing first leters from and to two fictional characters and then writing stories about them. We did this for a few years. The characters are my oldest friends and much beloved.

    I still have many of the old letters and stories, but for a long time they may as well have been shredded. I starting losing my vision and could not read them. My husband, Jim, typed them all on the computer and now I can read them again. One of the silliest and most prrecious stories was a Christmas story in the odd pseudo medieval kingdom my friend and I created. i go back every Christmas now and look at it again. I chuckle, when I’m not cringing. The story is actually online.. just look for Christmas 766.. I think.

    Nan Hawthorne

  7. I’m not very sentimental either but I do have a Christmas bear that I got many years ago and I’ve still carted around from place to place 🙂

    smaccall AT

    • That’s wonderful. Sometimes you need to touchstone witht he safety and simlicity of childhood, I’ve found I do occasionally.

  8. My husband gave me a beautiful silver and amber bracelet one Christmas… and I promptly lost it.

    I’m actually still waiting to find it again.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: