“Heap on the wood!-the wind is chill; But let it whistle as it will, We’ll keep our Christmas merry still.”

Jack Frost is nipping at my nose. It is cold, 32˚. A flurry of tiny flakes started when I was going to the store. They were wet on my windshield. By the time I got home, the flurry had stopped. The sky is a whitish gray. The sun is somewhere else. The day isn’t all that inviting.

Five days until Santa.

I remember going to Jordan Marsh to see Santa. The line was long, and the store was hot. I had to carry my bulky coat. I kept moving it from arm to arm. The Enchanted Village, windows all along the line’s route, kept our attention so we didn’t whine about waiting. We thought it amazing that all the characters moved. The shoemaking’s hammer went up and down. Children dressed in velvet finery decorated the tree in their living room. They held tinsel or an ornament and moved up and down. Some characters waved moving side to side. It was remarkable.

Where the village ended, we could see Santa just a bit beyond. Every kid pointed him out. He was at the end of the line and worth the long wait. Jordan’s Santa was always the best looking. He wore an embroidered suit like Father Christmas does. His boots were shiny, and his beard was to my eyes real. I told him what I wanted for Christmas then I smiled for the picture, an easy thing to do when you’re on Santa’s lap.

This morning I dropped cookies off for the library’s Christmas open house. It was a tray of Italian cookies from the bakery. I bought myself a cinnamon bun, a bit of Christmas indulgence.

Tonight I’ll wrap my friend’s presents so I can clear out the den. Tomorrow I’ll start baking. All the preliminaries are almost finished. Bring on Christmas!!

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23 Comments on ““Heap on the wood!-the wind is chill; But let it whistle as it will, We’ll keep our Christmas merry still.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    ince Swedish kids meet Santa on Christmas Eve I think most parents didn’t feel the need to go to the store santa but we did go once and I hated it. Even though I knew he wasn’t for real I still was terrified of him 🙂

    We went to Grand, one of the two big stores in our city. Back in teh days the Yule Gnome rarely wore red clothes, the one i
    I met had grey clothes as I remember it. Now days all Yule Gnomes are dressed in red and flies a sled pulled by reindeers. Back in the days it was a horse. I think Disney is to blame for that change, we’ve always liked the old animated films the Disney company made and they drew reindeers 🙂

    32F this time of year is sort of warmish 🙂 Normally it should be several degrees below that and snow all over the place, I don’t miss it at all 🙂

    Have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      We had one come to the house when I was 3 or 4. I sat on his lap, but my brother never came out of the bedroom. He was scared stiff. He is the only one without a picture with Santa.

      The reindeer came about long before Disney. I found this, “The first reference to Santa’s sleigh being pulled by a reindeer appears in Old Santeclaus with Much Delight, an illustrated children’s poem published in New York in 1821 The names of the author and the illustrator are not known.”

      I like that your gnome wore grey. It is too bad he fell victim of dressing like Santa.

      The cold comes and goes. It was in the teens a few days back and single digits at night. We’re having a reprieve.

      Enjoy the evening!

      • olof1 Says:

        Yes reindeers might have been around in the Us since Jesus walked around in shorts 🙂 Over here that poem is unknown and here he used a horse or a goat to pull the sled.

        Disney had a huge influence on us since we only saw those films on tv at Christmas, one hour in total. Otherwise we mostly saw eastern European animations, they were fairly good but nothing like Disney films. We did live in the free world but Swedish television back then could fool anyone, anything from the US was evil in their eyes 🙂

      • katry Says:

        Disney movies are wonderful, and I definitely can’t see Disney as being in any way evil.

        I like the idea of a horse or goat cart, but then the flying would get complicated.

  2. Hedley Says:

    -4F said the Jeep, horrible wind chill when I took the terrier out this morning to sniff air and do terrier stuff.

    My daughter and husband were over yesterday for “Christmas” before they head down to Florida on Wednesday to see his folks. I am trying very hard to accept these new arrangements but it isn’t really in me. I like my Christmas Eve at the Chapel with all the family and Christmas Day with everyone at the table. Oh well, I am old and new families are forming.

    Spoiler Alert – Kat, how did you and KTCC families members discover that there is/was no Santa Claus/Father Christmas/ der Weihnachtsmann ??

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      Yikes, your weather has been far colder than ours. We haven’t gotten as low as minus anything yet.

      My sister missed her traditional Christmases when her kids got married. They made some adjustments and decided that Moe would host Christmas Eve all the time so Christmas Day can be whatever. The whole family is there. The kids do pinatas. Everyone eats Moe’s whoopie pies. The house is wonderfully filled with family.

      I was thinking about that this morning when I was writing about Santa. I couldn’t remember when I found out. Either it was so dramatic I buried it deep in my psyche or it was no big thing so I forgot.

    • Birgit Says:

      Hedley, my Canadian uncle sent a Christmas parcel each year, I can’t remember that I ever believed in Santa or the Christchild which was more popular back then. We weren’t this kind of family anyway.

      • Hedley Says:

        Well, I hope that your Canadian Uncle sent you really cool stuff. You must have been excited for the arrival of his gift each year

      • Birgit Says:

        Hedley, cool American stuff and delicious Marshmellows 🙂

  3. Birgit Says:

    Switch to Celsius, 32°C is a nice summer day 🙂
    Back to TV, the world is crazy, looks like something happened in Berlin…

    • Hedley Says:

      Birgit – your friend in Detroit is watching and greatly saddened – glad you are safe and sound in Bochum

    • katry Says:

      I am grieving at what happened in Berlin. I too am glad you are safe.

    • Birgit Says:

      Doesn’t look like a mere accident but who knows. I’ll call my Berlin relatives tomorrow but it’s unlikely that they were part of the Christmas market crowd. Sad Christmas in Berlin.

  4. I’ve lost count by now of how many of your Christmas posts have helped illuminate my own holiday season, Kat. Here’s hoping your Yule is nothing less than terrific and that you have many more to share with KTCC’s loyal readership. Merry, merry! R

    • katry Says:


      We all share so many Christmas traditions, but we put a bit of a slant to the festivities, a bit of our own famiiies. I see mine in my ornaments, decorations and food.

      Thank you!

      Merry Christmas!

  5. Bob Says:

    Your experience with Santa at Jordan Marsh reminds me of the Santa scene in my favorite Christmas Movie, A Christmas Story. Hey kid you’ll shot your eye out. 🙂

    Carlos Bakery, of the TV show fame Cake Boss opened here in Dallas in March. I haven’t gone there but maybe between Christmas and New Years would be a good time to buy a couple of Canoles and Lobster Claws.

    The low this morning was 21 but it warmed up nicely with the sun in the afternoon to almost 40 degrees. It will be 60 by Wednesday. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      That’s a great scene when you’re the kid being twirled and seated.

      Carlos has really expanded. I remember he bought a building and opened the second shop. Now he’s all the way to Dallas.

      It was in the 30’s when I went out but I haven’t been outside since 2 so I have no idea of the weather.

      • Bob Says:

        I think Buddy the cake boss opened up the Bakery in Preston Center because it is next door to both Highland Park and University Park. They are two independent towns right in the middle of Dallas where the ultra rich live. Jerry Jones’ grandson just won the 5A high school football championship playing quarterback for the Highland Park High School team. The Park Cities have their own police and fire departments as well as an independent school district that never takes federal funds. It’s like sending your kid to a private school but the property taxes to support it are sky high. There’s no busing into the district nor forced integration.

      • katry Says:

        His New Jersey bakeries are all in the city so I think the where is based on a variety of factors.

        What is Preston Center like?

  6. splendidone Says:

    Wonderful as always to hear all of your traditions. This is our first Christmas with our oldest Daughter living away, yet she is coming in for a day or two. Traditions change as the years go by and we must adapt. Best thing about the holidays for me are family and memories. I have been busy wrapping gifts in brown paper, although I use colored ribbon instead of string because when I was very young we lived in Florida and the best part of Christmas was getting brown paper packages tied up with string in the mail! Happy Solstice,Merry Christmas to you all.xoxox

    • katry Says:

      I’m glad your daughter is making it home. Being all together is one of the best parts of the holiday. Since my mother died, we haven’t been together for Christmas. We have new traditions and my sister’s family has grown with grandchildren, but my best memories are of family.

      One year I used brown paper, but I decorated it freehand and with stencils.

      Merry Christmas, splendid!

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