In search of story

December 12.19


Many the Christmas

has faded away,

but here are a couple

preserved for today.

The curly-haired toddler,

a bit knobby of knee,

recalls the first Christmas

for cute little me.

The other, my parents,

with some of their caucus,

a nefarious bunch,

unruly and raucous.

A time to be serious

about four-in-hand,

and to mutter at tinsel

hung strand by strand.

Life wasn’t perfect then,

but still I hold dear

the Christmases seen

in life’s rearview mirror.


That’s my dad in the middle, and my mom is the one looking down at him; I can’t tell if she’s thinking what a great guy he is or his collar needs more starch. You will notice, dear reader, the Christmas tree in the far right of the photo. If you can remember the insanity of hanging tinsel strand by maddening strand, then you also remember the days when ties were what you could always get your dad for Christmas.



2 thoughts on “December 12.19

  1. This post hit me in some hot spots. 🙂 First, I love the header shot. It’s lovely. You were certainly cute, and it makes sense your parents were handsome. I always smile looking at older photos of how dressed up people got to just sit around and have a good conversation or a round of cards. I also remember sprinkling shirts, putting them in the refrigerator, and standing for a long time to get one ironed just right. Yes, I remember hanging each strand of tinsel, and I remember removing every strand to hopefully keep for next year because we couldn’t afford to buy new packages each year. As I’ve matured, I’ve realized what valuable lessons I learned being poor in a one parent home when that wasn’t considered part of the norm. Looking at family photos this time of year just seems like a good thing to do because it warms the heart and the soul and reminds us what was and still is important. Have a great Thursday, and thanks for the gift of this post..

    • YES to everything you said. You were raised by a single parent? Wow. That would have been really tough back when we were kids. As I think you know, I’ve been a single parent for eons and it was still tough even when it wasn’t all that unusual.

      We too took the tinsel down strand by strand and saved it year to year; smoothing the tinsel was as fine an art as ironing those shirts (and wasn’t there a pot of bluing on the stove?) — I actually still have a bag of used tinsel from those days (I think that should be another post — nobody younger would believe it!) The header is a shot of a gorgeous scrapbook a friend gave me years ago; the cover is handmade and I love it. It is a treasured keepsake.

      And you are so right about the dressing up. Boy, have things changed in that regard!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.