The Holiday Tales & Traditions Blog Hop
Thank you Bernie Kringel from Needle and Foot for sponsoring this blog hop! This is the second, just for fun hop she is sponsoring this month. Bernie knows we all need a little extra holiday fun and good stories in our December this year, and I was happy to oblige and tell a tale of a Christmas long ago.
I grew up in a suburb of Reading, Pennsylvania (you know, Reading RR on the monopoly board). The 7 of us lived in this split level. Take note of that big picture window, it comes to play later in the story. I was the eldest of 5, 4 younger brothers – ranging from 13 months younger to 10 years younger. This was the house we grew up in, 4 bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths! One of the skills I learned then was to shower fast and be out the door first. I am still quick in the bathroom, even though there are no longer 6 other people waiting to use the bathroom.
Our Christmas tradition for many years, had been to start at my Grandparents house on Christmas Eve. This was their row home, in West Reading. The tradition was developed out of necessity – my parents figured out the only way to make Christmas manageable with 5 kids and get any sleep was to have Santa arrive first at our house. We would go to my Grandparents, and they would assemble Christmas.
It was a long wait, made longer by the celebrating that ensued before we would get to go back to our house. My parents would finish their “santa duties” and meet their friends for cocktails. Some of their friends and other relatives would then come to my Grandparents and about 48 hours later we would have dinner – well at least that was how it seemed to us kids!
Now, you may be wondering about this image. What does a cartwheel have to do with Christmas??? On this particular Christmas there was a surprise waiting for us. I am not sure when in the evening this happened, but I remember my mother saying , “Santa left something else”. She went downstairs and brought up a basket. We were beside ourselves. My youngest brother Joseph cried, everyone else screamed and hollered with excitement. My brother Tom attempted a cartwheel in the living room! We just couldn’t believe our dream came true.
This is not a picture of our kitties, but they looked very much like this as kittens. The were named Chet and Charlie, seal point siamese kittens, and lived with us for a very long time.
As they aged, the looked a little more like this. These are not my pictures of the cats – my childhood pictures are elsewhere, but they help to tell the story. This is a tale that was often retold in our family, as even the neighbors wondered what we got that Tom was so excited. They caught that cartwheel being done and couldn’t imagine what would cause that. I don’t think Tom had reached 6’3″ yet, but he was always pretty tall and the ceilings were not that high in that house. To this day, we celebrate Christmas Eve; he hasn’t done a cartwheel since for Christmas.
So, I hope the enthusiasm and fun of a big Christmas surprise brightens your day. I am smiling as I read this. Please check out Bernie’s blog and the other tales of holidays past. I wonder if there are any other tails in the posts?
Sew Preeti Quilts
Confessions of a Fabric Addict
From My Carolina Home
The Colorful Fabriholic
Me & My Quilts
Sarah Goer Quilts
Needle and Foot
Coming Up on the Blog:
TGIFF – 12/18
#TTot22 – 12/22
Quilting Resolution 12/30
Wrap up 2020!