Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My ghosts of Christmas Eve past

This Christmas season I was thinking about the people in my Life and how precious they are to me. Last night it was a chilly night. The rain was still drizzling away when  my cousin called and we talked for a while. As I sat in Hubby’s easy chair and listened to my cousin talking about her day and me of course telling about my adventures I realized how very thankful  I am to have her in my Life. We reminisced about visiting our Nana and Tata every Christmas eve in their home and how there were so many kids in the house and yard. We would be there all night with the parents talking at the big table while all the cousins would try to find things to do.   For some reason this sounds dumb but we loved my Nana’s toaster. It had lots of slots and we would play with the toaster forever it seemed. The bread would be put in and then it would slowly go down which as a kid was fun to watch.Then we would munch on Cinnamon toast. Don’t laugh! I am telling you there was nothing to do but talk to each other.

I think of all those kids and how well behaved we were back then. Those were the days where kids sat at kid tables and grownups sat at another. We would be bored waiting to go home so we could go to sleep and wake up for Santa. There were no computer games or anything electronic so we would be laughing playing with our cousins and having to interact with each other. Nobody was staring at their phone.or playing Wii games. The black and white television had limited channels not like today where there are unlimited things to watch and distract you .

The older cousins would hang out with each other and the rest of us would be jumping off the porch one after another! I was at the porch. Lol.I know it sounds so simplistic but I think that it was true Christmas Eve no distractions just family.
Of course there would be Tamales Way too hot! There would be this big silver tall pot full of them. The smells from the kitchen of steamed tamales would carry out to the whole house filtering to some of us kids sitting on the couch. I liked the sweet tamales and my cousin reminded me how she didn’t like my Nana’s because they were way too hot. My cousins Aunt made the best tamales I ever tasted so I agreed with her.

Tamales are so much work so every year I go down to this little store where you walk through the door and wind your way to the back of the store where they have all these ladies working away making hundreds of Tamales.  I buy pineapple raisin sweet tamales and meat tamales at Christmas time. It's always a pain when I I have to go back if all their sweet tamales are gone for the day and return the next day.

This one tradition of Christmas Eve I cling too of my Father's side of the family I am determined for  Jack, Megan and Mike and now baby Jacks German Swedish Irish side of the family to share in my tradition of Tamales and Christmas Eve.
A simple meal on Christmas Eve that brings alive the smiling loud talking all at once family that floods my mind this time of year that sits at the table at Christmas Eve of my Christmas Eve past.
The picture in my mind is of the Uncles and Aunts sitting at the table for so many hours chatting away in competition for attention of the other siblings at the table such a picture of a boisterous large family. Kids opening and shutting the door being reminded not to let the cold air in.
  I can recall the gentle smiling face of my blue eyed Tata who would stand at the kitchen doorway as he was such a great host.I can still see him standing at that doorway looking at his four sons and two daughters. I  remember walking out the porch to see his chickens then rushing in way too cold to be out in the yard !Wiping my new holiday shiny black shoes before I came back in the house.  Nana walking back and forth to the kitchen. To this day I am not quite sure if she enjoyed all those grand kids .
My Aunt Luce with her funny laugh and My Dad in the thick of his siblings talking away with his  great story telling and of course my Aunt Sophie who would always bring us gifts of brand new pajama's who is still with us today.
 You only have to close your eyes and think in your mind of those happy childhood memories that come alive this time of year and hear the whispers of the ghosts of Christmas Eve past to bring those loved ones with you during  this season.Present in your mind always in your heart and treasured forever.Merry Christmas Season!Cheri


Sassafras and Winterberry said...

What a happy memoir. I was right there in the thick of it...with you, and your family! Thanks for sharing this!!

acorn hollow said...

what wonderful memories. You are very lucky to have a cousin so close to share it with.

Larkrise garden girl said...

Hi lucky me such nice blogger friends. I have been Christmas decorating all day and listening to Christmas music. I am sure you all could share tales of family Christmas's as special.Hugs Cheri

Julia said...

I just love reading your post and I was thinking way back to my own childhood.

My mom would bake for days, making meat pies and cakes with nice shiny white and chocolate frosting with little edible silver ball decorations and tiny chocolate sprinkles and lots of pies.

Christmas and New Years were celebrated with lots of visit from family and friends. Thanks for the sweet memories.

Larkrise garden girl said...

Julia,What a nice memory!I bet that's where you get your cooking ability! Hugs Cheri

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful blog! You paint a perfect picture. Yes, I can smell the tamales, hear the laughter and giggles from all the kids. What a grand time we had just jumping off the porch and burning through a loaf of bread to make toast. You forgot to tell that it was a mystical toaster for small kids because the toast automatically went down and we could hardly wait until it was done. Of course your dad would tell all the kids that the radio just said that Santa was spotted in the skies of San Diego. We were so gullible that we would stare into the sky forever hoping to get a glimpse of Santa. Yes, those were the days! By the way, we're having tamales for dinner tonight! Love, Your cousin (*-*)

Larkrise garden girl said...

I remember the radio which told us where Santa was in the sky.Lol Enjoy your tamales.Cheri

Bee Lady said...

Oh Cheri, I have the same memories of my Aunts and Uncles always getting together on my Mom's side of the family and all of us cousins would play together. YOu're so right, we would play because there weren't electronic games then. We'd even make stuff up. From being together so many times growing up, many of us cousin's are friends now. And we have a reunion once a year, many of us meet up more than that, and every now and then we take a vacation togehter. sigh...such good memories. I went by my Aunt & Uncles house not long ago and took pics. In another town. I never posted them because I was afraid it would upset too many people, but I just might anyway. I can still see my Grandpa standing on their porch....

Beautiful post.
Cindy Bee

Larkrise garden girl said...

Cindy Bee, Aren't we all lucky to have such nice childhood memories.HUgs Cheri