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Boxing day was not so exciting this year.I never thought about it till later in the day.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

BOXING DAY was a very big deal when I was a child. It was much more important than Christmas for my family.

It only became a really big deal when we came to the US and had children to buy for. I think today there was a let down on BOXING DAY.
I realized even more about this than I had thought through till this year.

With no Children around it was a let down for sure.

We were poor!. Only Children were given CHRISTMAS BOXES , in my childhood. Grown ups did not get Christmas presents in our family.

We were poor and my aunts were mostly in "SERVICE” that means they were servants to the wealthier people in the town. My uncles were soldiers during WW 2.
I grew up with many more women in town than men, since the men went to war and some never returned. There were older men but not too many that I knew.

My Aunts would work very long hours on CHRISTMAS DAY making sure everything went right for the rich folks. The day after Christmas they went to the big houses early in the morning and they made up cold meals for any people in the house and then they took all the leftovers home in "BOXES"

These became known as "CHRISTMAS BOXES" and in my childhood we never asked for gifts or presents we too asked for Christmas BOXES instead.

The day after CHRISTMAS DAY was called BOXING DAY and on that day we had leftover foods of all kinds.
Meat and meat pies along with fruit pudding and fruit pies. It was our feast day.

Happy , happy BOXING DAY.

The servants had the rest of the day off, that was customary. Some of the live-in servants went back later in the evening so they could light the fires in the morning. My Aunt who was a cook always stayed in the kitchen I never saw her on that day. She was very popular with the Lord of the house and so she was admired by my Gran because Aunty Em was such a great cook.

My Mam was a rebel, she refused to be a servant instead she worked first in a chemical plant and later in ship building.

That is my story and you can understand why Christmas was just a church service and the same story every year, there was very little joy on Christmas day in our family almost everyone had to work.

On BOXING DAY we were given excellent food that we never got any other time of the year. Sometimes my Gran was given money and clothes too, so it was our happiest time of the Winter indeed of the year.

When we had our children here in the US. My mother always sent the children a parcel and I would hide it till Christmas.
Very early I forgot to put out the gifts from Mam, the following day I remembered. I went to get them and our son asked why Father Christmas had left them there so I was VERY HAPPY to tell the boys these are gifts from Your Grandmother in England to celebrate BOXING DAY.

Later I told them what it was all about but one son asked me to still keep doing the BOXING DAY gifts because he felt it made it better to get presents for two days and they came from Grammie.

We did do that and it felt like we were honoring our English heritage custom in our family roots.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
DOWNEASTLASS 12/29/2012 9:33PM

    Thank you for sharing this with us, Pat. I had a vague understanding of Boxing Day, but you really made it very real to me!

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POOHGIRL1970 12/28/2012 12:40PM

    I didn't not know about Boxing glad you explained it. Glad your children were about to experience it and hopefully it has become a tradition to them now that they are grown.

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LUNADRAGON 12/27/2012 11:42PM

    Thank you again for sharing your tradition and history. I love reading your stories. Hugs and Happy New Year.
Here is a virtual box for you from me! Full of good wishes, hopes and dreams.

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TERRI289 12/27/2012 10:40PM

    Love this story..thank you for telling it! emoticon

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EFFIEANNIE 12/27/2012 7:48PM

    Loved to hear the significance of boxing day for you. I have learned so many cultural things from my Spark Friends.

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PICKIE98 12/27/2012 7:26PM

    Actually, sometimes when we had leftover things after the holidays, I took them to church to be given to those that asked. Not quite the same, but at least I knew they went to good use.

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MRSAGAIN2 12/27/2012 3:02PM

    What a sweet story.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 12/27/2012 2:53PM

    Cool. I will never look at Boxing Day the same. I had no idea of the significance.

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LITTLEWIND53 12/27/2012 2:21PM

    We have always had Boxing Day here in Canada, but I was told that it was called that because it was the day a person boxed up all the gifts they had received that they didn't want, or didn't fit, or gott more than one the same...... boxed and returned to the store for refund or exchange.

Recently most stores are so busy with thier Boxing Day sales (or many now have Boxing Week sales) that they no longer accept returns on the 26th....

I really enjoyed your version of Boxing Day. Does not sound nearly as "commercial" as the Canadian version.....

Glad you had a good Christmas even if Boxing day was somewhat flat for you.
(((Hugs))) to you both.

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ALICIA214 12/27/2012 1:24PM


I so identify with you...having grown up with a single mum [My dad died when I was seven} our expectations were zero so anything we received was
a bonus...but we received everything that was essential to our well being.
We were lucky enough to live with our grandmother until we were able to
find a council flat to live in ....It taught us to appreciate all that was given to us. I wish you and your family all the very best for 2013

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2WHEELEDSHARON 12/27/2012 12:07PM

    I like this story very much Pat, I hadn't heard it before and didn't know about it. I have Canadian friends who celebrate Boxing Day but it sounds different from your story. Neat!

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SHIRLEYX 12/27/2012 11:35AM

    Thank you for sharing the story of Boxing Day. Here in Canada, it is still a holiday, but I never knew the story behind it!
emoticon emoticon

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RD03875 12/27/2012 11:10AM

    Thank you for sharing your boxing day stories. It is so interesting to read about other traditions.

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1CRAZYDOG 12/27/2012 10:53AM

    What a beautiful story! I can see how boxing Day meant more to you than Christmas. And that's sweet that you have those memories!!

HUGS and hope you & DH are doing well.

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BAKER1009 12/27/2012 9:43AM

    I really had no idea what boxing day was, Pat. Thanks for sharing this story! You've taught me so much in the short time we've been friends and I appreciate that!


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EGGBASKET1 12/27/2012 9:35AM


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MIDCOASTMOXIE 12/27/2012 9:22AM

    Thanks for sharing your memories of Boxing Day! It is interesting to hear your story and the historical frame-of-reference, very enlightening. I know what you mean about Christmas being different without children around. I still enjoy re-living my precious memories of Christmas with my son, it warms my heart. emoticon emoticon

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CHALLENGER15 12/27/2012 9:01AM


I didn't have Boxing Day, but I was always so excited when I received boxes of clothes from some older cousins, who I have now reconnected with in the last few years. I am sure that was part of why I love to sew so much; their clothing was homemade and just wonderful!

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BETHGILLIGAN 12/27/2012 8:04AM

    Great blog, Pat!!! Thanks!

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GOANNA2 12/27/2012 7:51AM

    Thank you for telling us the story of what Boxing Day
means. I also agree that Christmas seems to me different
without little kids around. I went to a Christmas Eve Carol
Service and that made my Christmas. I'm glad you had
a great day - cold and all. We are still in the 30's here and
i still am wishing for cooler weather. emoticon emoticon

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QUEENMOXIE 12/27/2012 7:43AM

    I am so glad that you told me your story about what boxing day is and where it started. I thought it had to do with the sport of boxing. Silly me. That must have been a very exciting time to get all those yummy treats, even if it was leftovers from the well-to-do. Maybe that explains why my father's friend Mr. Baron, use to bring us a big box of left-over Christmas treats the day after Christmas. It makes sense now. I love knowing things like this. Thanks! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GAMMY98 12/27/2012 7:20AM

    thanks for sharing this. I had never heard of any of this until your blog. It is so nice the way your son ask you to carry it on. Hope it is a good day for you today. Thanks again.

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GDY2SHUZ 12/27/2012 2:26AM

    A wonderful way to honour your mother on this special day. I can understand your son wanting to have 2 days of gifts, in this tradition.

Blessings be with you and yours. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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123ELAINE456 12/27/2012 2:16AM

  I Love Your Blog Very Much. You bring everything to life in the blogs. Thank You for telling Us about your Heritage and Family Roots. I find it very interesting finding out what Boxing Day is all about. Thank You for Sharing it. God Bless You and DH. Have a Super Easy nice Day. Stay Safe and Warm. Take Care. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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BRENDAGAIL9 12/27/2012 1:44AM

    You are so right about Christmas not being fun without children. These days are just a very sad day for me because I live alone and there is no expectation anymore. I never get any gifts from anyone but I buy myself fun things like kitchen gadgets that I don't really need but are fun to use. This year I bought a red infusion blender and a red ceramic iron skillet with a handle on each side. A new cell phone will arrive on Friday. I chose not to attend our Christmas potluck yesterday because I just didn't want to be around people. I did have fun doing Santa's costume and putting mine together for our Christmas Secret Santa party.

Thank you for explaining Boxing Day. I never knew what it was all about.

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NASFKAB 12/27/2012 1:28AM

  great story all the best stay well

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LJCANNON 12/27/2012 12:58AM

    emoticon Thank You for sharing Your Family and the History of Boxing Day with us!! Ireally do enjoy the History that you bring to Life in your Blogs!!

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DEBBIEANNE1124 12/27/2012 12:21AM

    I'm glad you enjoyed boxing day. I ahd no idea about it.

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ARTJAC 12/27/2012 12:12AM


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WOWEETOO 12/26/2012 11:49PM

    thank you so much bought the story to life as it is and it's a wonderful story for sure
the lady mary emoticon

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