** Post Your Great Moments of Christmas 2009 **

Jeff Westover

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We have a great tradition of counting up to the season in the countdown thread. This has been such an epic Christmas filled with such memorable events that I don't want to forget what has transpired. I want to share it and I want to save it -- remember it, archive it and cherish it for some time to come. I thought it would be a good idea to share our great moments of Christmas 2009 in this thread in hopes of starting a new tradition here on MMC.

I'll keep this thread pinned and active for a few weeks before we lock it down for safe keeping and looking back. What you share here can be anything -- receiving or giving a favorite gift, sharing a Christmas moment from any event in the season, family laughs, pranks or tears, etc. Whatever it is you want to remember, please share.

So, starting out, here's mine (I have several this year I want to put in the Hall of Fame):

1. Christmas Eve in my house features the Nativity from Luke 2 performed by the kids for the adults (we might narrate or, at a minimum, clap). This year's recounting of the Nativity included a brave solo by my 7-year-old niece, who sang like an angel in the purity of voice that only a child has at the moment the birth of the Savior was remembered. A heavenly host could have done no better.

2. Receiving the long-awaited phone call from our missionary daughter on Christmas night, whose voice we have not heard since she left about 8 months ago. It was a delight to share Christmas with her, if even only by phone. Watching the looks on the faces of her siblings was about as Christmasy as it comes.

3. Opening presents on Christmas morning and seeing the results of our annual Secret Santa effort, where names are drawn and a month's worth of efforts to provide service and goodwill secretly are revealed with to/from tags on gifts that can cost no more than $5.25. What amazing creativity from the kids this year! The highlight was seeing what my 12-year-old daughter did for her 15-year-old and somewhat-cocky brother: she gave him the Ultimate Manliness Kit which included maxi pads (for putting in his manties), manly smelly soap and shampoo, a bra for his "moobs" and a manly blankie for when he gets scared in the dark of night. Nothing got bigger laughs.

4. Opening the package sent by my missionary daughter first thing on Christmas morning featured a letter written for each member of the family and a small gift for each person. She gave me Silly Putty and made my eyes fill with tears as she recounted how I taught her how to pull comics from the Sunday paper with the stuff. Her sense of humor and her special relationship with her siblings shown through in moments such as when 7 year old Emma opened her gift from Aubree and discovered a cheese grater. You cannot tell me that anywhere else in the world there was another 7 year old to receive such a gift and to literally squeal with happiness. "THAT'S AWESOME!" Emma exclaimed, "None of my friends will have a cheese grater as good as mine, it has THREE blades". I laughed until I cried.

5. Reuniting with a wayward brother, who resurfaced after no contact for more than a decade. He is married now and has four children. I got to meet them all, and his wife too. At dinner one night I was delighted by my three year old nephew who had no problem telling the waiter exactly what he wanted for dinner. When the waiter asked if there was anything else he could bring him my nephew said, "Yes, a toy." I knew then we were definitely related.

6. Christmas cards, Christmas cards, Christmas cards! Most from my friends from right here on MMC, from Christmas Talk and from Clausnet.com.

7. Music! And getting to meet David McCullough and Natalie Cole.

Ok, those are (some of) mine....what are yours???

Jeff
 

Father Christmas

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Some wonderful moments Jeff thanks for sharing.

I have one that stands out and that is waking up early and seeing everything still covered in 5 inches of snow. So quiet, peaceful and beautiful, just magic. cheesy

I'm sure I will have another when my girlfriend returns from Germany later today.

Colt
 

RadioJonD

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Great memories, Jeff! Thanks for sharing.

No defining moments come to mind for me specifically. Indeed, many presents were opened and many thanks were given and much love was shared, just like many Christmases before!

The largest, and by far the best gift of Christmas 2009, was for our family to all be together for what is quite likely my wife’s brother’s last Christmas. We learned this past November that he is stricken with ALS, often referred to as Lou Gering’s Disease. The associated symptoms, present as early as late spring, have progressed rapidly. He is only a few months younger than I.

I only wish that I was just half as courageous as he!
 
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JOHNOR

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great thread jeff, some wonderful memories you have their. your nephew sounds like quite a character!

a very special memory for me this year is the wonderful white blanket of snow we had on 23rd december, it was magical as it's quite rare we get a white christmas. our neighbours and ourselves had a snowball fight, built a snowman and had lots of fun, it was very festive and i would love to get that snow again next year.

of course, it was my daughter's 1st christmas this year. as she is only 3 months old she doesn't understand but it was fantastic to spend christmas with my very own little family. i shouldn't wish time away but i CANNOT wait for the next christmases that will come. i just know they are going to be the most special, magical times.
 

Christmasstar

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December 19:

My Christmas officially started on December 19th with our annual family Christmas party.
We had 26 people at my place..... 20 adults and 6 children.
This was my first year for hosting it and it was so much fun.

The little ones rearranged my decorations, carrying around my little singing Christmas trees and giving me the fun of locating my sets of things (reindeer, nativity, novelties) again after they went home. cheesy
My place not being all that big, we where not able to actually sit around the table. So everyone just grabbed a plate, loaded up and found a place to settle down and enjoy.

The gift exchange was fun with the little ones eagerly passing gifts to everyone. At which time someone starts balling up the wrap and tissue paper and trowing it at each other. I am still finding it behind and under things!

After that our family plays a fun game where everyone brings a fun gift...be it something old, or just weird or actually useful, then a # is drawn and if it is yours you get to pick one. If you like it you hang on to it, or if you saw something someone else had that you like you take that instead and they get to open a new one. After all the gifts are taken, #'s go back in the hat and it starts again, giving you one last chance to exchange what you have for something else. The noise and laughter is at high decibels as everyone enjoys the fun!

December 23:


On the 23 for the very first time we did the Christmas pickle tradition! I hid it and it took them 10 min and several "your hot" & "your cold" hints my son found it and the first gift of Christmas was opened by him. (new family game) It was so enjoyed that we decided that it is now going to be an annual event here. cheesy

Christmas Eve:

With just me and my "Kids" (they are all over 20 now!") we open our gifts on Christmas eve slowly. By that I mean it can take us all day depending on how many there are to open. One gets opened when we all get up, then we have breakfast and clean up and another gets opened. We have a few rounds of a game until someone tired of loosing, says "lets open another one!" The day continues in this way until all but the gifts from Oma are opened. The gifts from my mom, their Oma get opened on Christmas morning.

Normally we attend the Christmas eve candlelight service at church, but with 1/2 of us sick we decided it would be best to stay home and not pass it around.


Christmas Day:

Christmas morning everyone runs down to discover Santa stopped by and there is now more than just the gifts from my mom/ Oma under the tree and everyone jumps right in and egerly opens them all.
This is followed by breakfast and a day to just relax, enjoy snacks, a few games and a movie or two.
Then the feast starts....turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, corn, roasted carrots and parsnips etc. A good bottle of wine to top it all off, the candles are lit and after giving thanks, the feasting begins.

Later on after the feast has been cleared away we enjoy dessert. This year it was a chocolate fondue with fresh fruit and homemade marshmallows. Of course, followed by another game!
The day ended with the watching of A Christmas carol.
 

AuntieMistletoeDear

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Auntie’s Time Capsule for Christmas 2009

1. While lighting the annual luminaries with my dad and two newbies, I heard the sound of sleigh bells and looked up in the sky. I got caught by one of my dad's Bridge buddies who was experiencing the luminaries for the first time. He said, "what are you looking for?" I said, "I'm quite sure I hear the sound of sleigh bells and I just had to look." He smiled and said, "they're coming from the door of that house" and gestured across the street. I said, "well this is a night for believing and to be honest it's not the first I've looked up tonight." He just laughed. I smiled at my courage to “keep Christmas in my heart all year”.

2. Meeting my parent’s neighbour's grandson who was about six years old. He and his parents had come to visit for the first time the Christmas before and he remembered the beautiful candles. A runway for Santa or lighting the way for the Christ child. We had fun. I’m a kid magnet. I sang a bevy of Christmas Songs in Donald Duck's voice, ones that he suggested. When he asked me to sing “When the Saints Go Marching In” I said, “you play the piano don’t you” he smiled and asked how I knew and I said, “I don’t get that request from anyone who doesn’t play the piano”. Running across him helped me miss the grandkids less.

3. Learning from my dad that while in Costa Rica, missing Christmas with the family for the first time since about ‘85, my brother found a candle in a bag bought it and lit his own luminary. Realizing that the annual luminary lighting is as important to him as it is to my dad and I. My mom enjoys it too, but she is always scurrying about inside while we set everything up outside. Each year, more and more neighbours exit their homes to join us so they can appreciate it all the more. People travelling to and from the largest church in the city, wave and greet us when they’re walking or honk their horns if they’re driving, but it’s the overall sense of calm and fellowship that makes it so special for me.

4. The arrival of an energetic neighbour with a smile as bright as the lit Christmas tree who looked like she just stepped out of one of RJD’s retro photos with a festive apron that complimented my parent’s colour scheme. She also had a white cocktail dress and served freshly baked homemade rich people ordurves (bleh caviar and such) to the guests. She was in and out in about ten minutes. (Bet she gets hired next year to stick around all night.) Coupled with that moment is the wave of traffic that flows through my parent’s home, every year forty or so guests come and go with only enough comfortable seating for about fourteen people, it’s like each guest has their own tradition of when to stop by and who they’ll see when they’re there.

5. Visiting MMC and Christmas Talk forums while reading and posting with other Christmas Enthusiasts and never once having any trouble getting on when I navigated to either destination. Sharing my annual Christmas book reading with O’Malley the cat, whether he liked it or not. Having an understanding husband who teases me playfully about my belief in Santa, but deep down finds it adorable. Bringing the celebration of Christmas back into my husband’s life. He spent some twenty years barely marking the day until we met and he had no choice and this year he thanked me for taking the lead on the decorations, gift buying, etc.

6. Talking with our grown children and grandchildren and hearing the excitement in their voices and exchanging gifts with my parents and husband and having my imaginary friend from childhood stop by to deliver special surprises in stockings that would fetch a good penny on eBay. The stockings were returned so she can deliver again next year.

7. Most of all, I appreciate that my parents who have had their share of health problems in the past, are still here to celebrate with us and have never lost their love for Christmas and grateful for friendships - the new and old. Oddly enough to include in a snapshot of a memorable moment, is the appreciation of my work ethic. I had a chance to leave work two hours early on Christmas Eve, but I had a deadline I wanted to keep since I'm on vacation for a week. I finished my project and submitted it to my boss, who is also away for a week.

Although it wasn't a perfect Christmas, a sense of inner peace rests within me.

Festive Regards,
AuntieMistletoeDear
 

Christmas-A-Holic

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Great memories everyone! Sorry to hear of the bad news RadioJonD.

December 24, 2009:
We all went to my uncles and I got to see my cousins that I don't get to see much throughout the year. My parents, kids and grandchildren were there. It was mainly for the kids to open their gifts, us adults opened on Christmas Day. We ate and played games. Also enjoyed a very nice and VERY RARE snowfall!!!

Bad news struck but all turned out ok. My cousin and her 5 year old child left and had an accident, their car flipped over. They were taken to the hospital and released and both doing well. THANK GOD!

December 25, 2009:
Woke up to snow on the ground! My very first white Christmas EVER! My husband (Snow-in-Texas) and I ate breakfast and had coffee. My job is closed down but my husband and I went there to feed all the animals. We volunteer for this every Christmas.

At home, my parents, kids and grandchildren came over. We had Mexican food for Christmas this year. It was different but enjoyed it very much! We watched Christmas movies, listened to Christmas music and exchanged gifts.

After company left my husband and I cleaned the house then relaxed and watched lots of Christmas movies.

Christmas 2009 was great!

Now we are counting down the days to Christmas 2010!!!
 

Snow-in-Texas

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Just to add to what my wife (Christmas-a-Holic) posted. My favorite time was when my wife opened her gift that I got for her. She absolutely loves The Beatles, and saw Paul McCartney when he was at Cowboys Stadium. Well I got her the DVD and CD set of his New York performance of the same tour she saw him on. I also got her a zip up hoodie with The Beatles' Abby Road album cover art on it. She was so surprised to get those, I just love giving her gifts I know she will love. She has already watched the DVD of the concert, and she said it was as awesome as when she saw him.
 

trackrebel

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Great thread Jeff...and so far I love everything that has been written...Radio Your...I will pray for Your brother in law.

First and foremost...just being with my family is awesome....my Christmas mood wasn´t as usual, since my fiance wasn´t with us...he left December 7th to be with his family in Cameroon (Africa) until January 7th.......still the time spend with my family was just beautiful and fun as ever....
Especially being able to celebrate Christmas with both my mother´s parents being there....after my grandfather´s bad health this year was very moving for me this year......My grandfather was crying several times this Christmas....and he was very happy as was my grandmother....to see their three beautiful great-grand-children running around and playing and singing along.

Getting a present from my three year old daughter for the first time...She´s in pre-school and they handcrafted a little present for the parents their....It made me so happy....and she was so proud when she gave me the present.
 

canadachristmas

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Great reading everyone's favorites!

Being from Canada, mine would include being snowed in during a blizzard at my girlfriends house making a gingerbread house

Making gingerbread cookies during another cold winters night that tasted awful, but it was still fun

Getting pictures taken with Santa even at the old age of 19!

Spending days putting up the outside lights in late October before the weather changes

Getting the inside of my house ready and all the trees up

Seeing A Christmas Carol in theatres

And my most favorite was driving the 7 hour drive to visit all my extended family in another province for Christmas Eve, Day, and Boxing day. Lots of gathering, a bowling family reunion and plently of food, music and friends!
 

made582

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There are a few things that really stick out to me this year.

1.) My 93 year old neighor would stop every morning on his way to go get coffee and look at my countdown to christmas sign and everytime I saw him he told me how much he liked it.

2.) The fun my nieces had playing with all of my santas when I had to babysit them.

3.) Watching my 20 month old niece on christmas morning running to the pile of gifts and picking one up. Then she would run aroung the room tearing off the wrapping paper as she went and then sit down where ever she was and look over her new gift. Then she would run back to the pile and start over again.

4.) Spending my first christmas season on this wonderful website.
 

Maebeary

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#1 was just having my family here on Christmas! With a 24 and 25 year old, it's nice to know they still want to be here. They both need a job and that's the main reason they're here but I'm sure they'd be here Christmas Day. I hope that one of them will get married and give me a grandchild, too.

#2 Hearing my students say "thank you" when I gave them their gifts.

#3 Our "kazoo play along" at school. I gave them all a kazoo, mini tamborine type thing and a microphone. These were all cake toppers and free from a place called Crayons to Computers. At the end of the last day before break, I told them to get their kazoos out. I showed them how to use them and we did a few Christmas songs... "Jingle Bells," "Rudolph," and "Up on the Housetop." The kids learned the last one in Music. It was a bit chaotic but ocassionally, you could hear the correct tunee. It was fun to say the least. Then, I got to send them all home.

#4 My kids play instruments...Ricky plays the saxophone and Alice plays the clarinet. On Christmas Eve, after eating, they played a few Christmas songs...solo and together.

#5 Making and eating Christmas cookies. :razz:

#6 Making a Gingerbread Train with 2 of my nieces. That was fun and very memorable!
 

Selene

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That was really special Christmas for me...actually, the best I've ever had...

December 23-24...Traditional Christmas shopping with my friends...I call it "Christmas buyings rush"))) The Mall full of people, gift shops and my favorite store with candles (adare them))) - I'm in high spirits!!! I bought a huge amount of candles and lighted them at night...wonderful sight!!!

December 25...We celebrated Christmas at the Uni...that was great!!! We brought lots of food, candles, statures (actually, I don't know how they are called...but something about Christmas). We sang christmas songs (but on German), recited poetry to the audience, I narrated the Christmas history and just had fun. Thanks a lot to my teacher and all the friends who share the Christmas feeling with me. I'll never forget that day))) :merry:
 
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pattilynn

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Radio... prayers here too.

This will sound like a pity party thing but honestly it is not!

after dealing with preditory lenders...bad news we lost our house... good news the darn house was a money pit! :) this allowed us to move to a town we've been wanting to move to for 10 years and to get away from very toxic relatives!

So the first time in years dh and I had a peaceful quiet Christmas day.
 
B

ballcoach

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My best memory of this year was when my brother got home the night before Christmas Eve. We all were together and my parents bought a game for us to play. The Family Feud for Wii and boy did we feud! It was so much fun!
 

caninemom3

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The first weekend in December, on December 5, I think, I went to help decorate my sister's tree. When we get together, we are such "goonbabbles." We put her tree up in between joking and laughing. When we finished, I went to dinner with my sister and my brother-in-law. Then we came back to their house and my sister and I watched A christmas Carol with Alastair Sim.

On Christmas Eve, my husband and I went to my sister's house as usual and I just cannot explain how I feel on that night. I feel a "glow" inside, a kind of warmth. My husband turned on the radio and we listened to an all Christmas station on the way to my sister's house. I sang out loud to the carols (good thing nobody but my husband and God heard me!!) and it was so wonderful. The houses on the way were AMAZING. At my sister's house, the 4 of us talked and visited and opened our presents then my husband and I came back home and opened our presents at our house.

Christmas with my sister is ALWAYS so special. She is my last "family of origin" member alive. We have always been close but because of some of the stuff we have gone through during the years are even closer. I think she is part of that Christmas Eve "glow" I get.


:tree:
 

Santa's Helper

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This Christmas was not a great one for me as I am going through some things that make it difficult to enjoy my favorite holiday, my brother was laid off from his job again and money was tight for all of us this year.

What we learned was that we can have a great Christmas on little money and that we were all together as a family. We had a nice dinner, talked and opened our gifts around the tree.
 

Annette

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we were all together as a family. We had a nice dinner, talked and opened our gifts around the tree.[/quote]

What really counts!! Hang in there friend. cheesy
 

Santa's Helper

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we were all together as a family. We had a nice dinner, talked and opened our gifts around the tree.

What really counts!! Hang in there friend. cheesy[/quote]
Thank you!
 

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