Until I was 12 and my mom remarried, we lived with my grandparents and my memory is of all the aunts, uncles and various cousins coming to "our" house for Christmas dinner. For many years grandma had a big black wooden cookstove in the kitchen and it kept things warm on a shelf and made the best pies and turkey. Everyone brought food too and I always felt special since everyone came to our house every year. Grandpa passed away in 1962 and that ended meeting at their house for the holidays. We also always had a Charlie Brown Christmas tree and I was such a fanatic about putting the tinsel on it and keeping it all neat and tidy. I loved the bubble lights we had too.
My family has the traditional Christmas, my mother had 7 siblings and for Christmas we would gather at my grandfathers for a huge meal and a few presents. I remember my grandmother would always buy the grandkids ( 20) , 2 pairs of underwear and a pair of socks. I always looked forward to getting my present. My grandfather has passed several years ago and I miss those days so much, it was a time we would meet all our cousins and aunts and uncles, we didn't know we had. My grandfather always had a jigsaw puzzel he was working on and I would stand by his side and try fitting the pieces together. My siblings (4) and all the grandchildren and great grandchildren meet at my Mom and Dads home for the traditional meal and gift exchange.
My father died when I was 6 and there were 7 of us, so times were pretty tough. I remember we always had a live Christmas tree. I still have a live Christmas tree every year. I buy a new decoration every year too.
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We were always broke when I was growing up, but my mother was a terrific cook. So for Christmas, instead of presents, mom would have the three of us (siblings) decide together on a country that we were interested in, and then she would read up and make us a traditional meal from that country. It gave us a chance to try out new foods we'd not otherwise get exposed to, since dining out at a German or Vietnamese or Ethiopian restaurant would be too expensive, and I fondly remember those meals and the things we learned together about the countries we chose. I know we did those three countries, because they really stick out in my mind; I'm sure we also did Spain and Italy and France, since they're easy (at least, more common) meals to make in the US. Unfortunately, for several of the years, I've forgotten what countries we did.
I was really saddened when, after we all grew up, she reverted to more traditional Christmas meals and gift events.
With the Holidays just around the corner I thought it would be a great idea if we all share some of our Family traditions. This could be favorite ornament's that are hung every year with a special meaning or certain types of meals that are prepared or things that you remember doing as a child.
The important thing is Family and in these times it seems that we are being pull together and are creating new family vaules to past on. So, with that said What are some of yours.
My favorite as a child was being able to open one present Christmas eve and getting a new ornament to put on the tree.
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