Posted tagged ‘carolers’

“Yes! Yes I do! I like Christmas! I love Christmas!”

December 10, 2017

Winter wonderland skipped us. We got rain the whole day, heavy rain at times. In the late afternoon, when I let Gracie out and brought trash to the car at the same time, we both got soaked. She wasn’t thrilled. My sister got around 6 inches of snow. I watched the news and saw the snow in Texas, an unusual occurrence in San Antonio. I laughed out-loud when a kid did a snow angel. Obviously snow was new to him. He did the angel face down.

Yesterday was a day of doing little for me. I made four or five trips carrying stuff like the displaced by the tree living furniture upstairs, wrote out more cards and went through catalogs but mostly I just sat. All the hauling up and down stairs made me tired. Today I have more energy and a to-do list. Gracie and I are going to the dump, to the small grocery store for bread and such and Agway for cat and dog food. I will decorate my wreaths and put them outside, and I’ll bring up bins from the cellar with the tree lights and some decorations. If I have any energy left, I’ll at least put on the tree lights. Tonight I’ll make myself a nice dinner and have some egg nog and watch Hallmark.

When I was a kid, Santa Claus had power over me. If I did anything wrong or fought with my brother, my mother threatened to call Santa. That was enough to get us to stop. I remember trips to Jordan Marsh to visit Santa. We’d take the bus to Sullivan Square then the subway to the Jordan’s stop. In those days Jordan’s and Filene’s had entrances from the stores to the subway. They were destinations.

I love Boston at Christmas time. The city is filled with people, some shopping, some just enjoying the festivities. The trees in the Common are lit for the holiday. Frog Pond is open for skating or for just sitting and watching the skaters while drinking a cup of cocoa. The giant tree from Nova Scotia is covered in lights. Small push wagons around the common sell roasted chestnuts and hot popcorn. Garlands hang from stores and street lights. People just seem happier.

My town was always decorated for Christmas. Swags of evergreen were hung from one side of the main street to the other. The store windows had trees and wrapped gifts and Santas. Carolers sang every night. The aroma of sugar cookies and bread wafted from Hank’s Bakery and hung in the air. The fire station was outlined in lights, and Santa was climbing a ladder to the chimney. I loved going uptown at night, and I still remember singing in the square.

I get excited for Christmas even now. I love the lights, and I could eat a dozen sugar cookies. Christmas music plays in the car and around the house when I’m decorating or baking. I sing along, out of tune, but that doesn’t matter. It’s Christmas!

“It’s in the singing of a street corner choir. It’s going home and getting warm by the fire. It’s true, wherever you find love, it feels like Christmas!”

December 9, 2016

 

Last night was freezing. Gracie slept right beside me with her head on my arm. I guess she needed the body warmth. We have sun today, but I’d gladly trade it for a warmer day. The temperature is in the 30’s and will go down to the 20’s tonight. At least we won’t get snow.

Al my Colorado presents are wrapped. The bin holds only unwrapped Cape presents, and I have time yet. Today is busy. Gracie and I are going to the dump then to UPS. I also need to get a Dunkin’ gift card and a few groceries. I have to make fudge for my sister. I’ll be seeing her tomorrow and the fudge is a tradition, a gift she loves. Tonight I’ll watch Hallmark Christmas movies and write out my Christmas cards. I have my Edward Gorey cards, special ones for the family and a few I bought in Ghana. The tree is postponed until Sunday. I am disappointed.

This end of the street is dark, no Christmas lights, except for my house. One of my neighbors does have a white light in each window, but that is it. At the other end of the street three of the houses have lights. And on the next street, one of the houses is amazing. The lawn is filled with lights and lit figures of Santa and his reindeer. The house is outlined. All the trees are ablaze with light. It is the best house in the neighborhood.

When I was a kid, the square at Christmas always had carolers the nights before Christmas when people were shopping. The John Hancock Company gave out free soft cover books of carols, and they were passed out each night to the carolers. I remember one cover had a church with a lit stain glass window. Another cover had three choir boys wearing white gowns and red bowties. I still have a couple of books, one of each cover. I remember singing in the square. We stood on a platform right in front of the drug store and the Children’s Corner. I was in the fifth grade. We probably weren’t all that good but we were enthusiastic. I remember it all.

“Like snowflakes, my Christmas memories gather and dance – each beautiful, unique and too soon gone.”

December 3, 2012

This is an alternative universe. It just has to be as mine doesn’t have sun or temperatures in the 50’s, at least not in December. Today and yesterday have been amazing. Though it rained a little yesterday, it was so warm all day that even at 11 o’clock last night it was still 51˚. Today is just as warm, and there is actually sun, a glowing orb in the sky I barely recognized. It’s a day to be outside enjoying a bit of a breather from winter.

The birds are back. This morning was like a busy day at O’Hare. My friends the chickadees have returned, as have goldfinches, a titmouse, woodpeckers who are enjoying my new suet feeder and the nuthatches who have been, for a while, my only visitors. Yesterday it was two house finches. When I stand at the sink, I look out the window behind it to get the best view of the birds and the feeders. I’m glad to have them back though now I need more sunflower seeds.

My outside lights went up yesterday and were lit last night. I drove around the block so I could see the whole house. It looks lovely, especially the huge star with trailing tails of lights which hangs on the driveway gate and the ornament tree lit by the spotlight. I noticed the sled near the door and the wreath on the front gate could use a bit of light so that will be my quest today, to find exactly the right strands. I also want to flower shop, to buy my poinsettias and boxwood. The rosemary tree is already on order. I love decorating my house for Christmas, and this is only the beginning.

The town where I grew up always decorated the fire station, the town hall and the square. The brick fire station was my favorite. Colored lights outlined the whole building and Santa climbed a ladder on the siren tower. In the square, decorations were strung from one side of the street to the other. A giant wreath was hung on the front of the police box which used to stand in the middle of Main Street. All the stores decorated their windows. Even the fish market had snowflakes falling on the mounds of snow at the bottom of the window, but you could still see the lobster tank.

In those days, the square had the only shops in town. Carolers from the different elementary schools sang each night on the stage which was erected just for Christmas. The sidewalks were filled with people, and you could hear them wishing each other a Merry Christmas. I loved being there just as it started to get dark and the Christmas lights were lit. It was like a fairyland.