what are your fond memories of holidays past

With the holiday season here I spend a lot of my time thinking back to family gatherings and the fun we had cooking, baking and preparing a meal together at one another’s home. I used to love this time of year with the shopping and everything else that rushed upon us despite other responsibilities—for me it was my day job and dancing/teaching on evenings and weekends. I was usually organized, so I was able to enjoy the season without feeling frantic. Of course, not having children probably allowed me a considerably more relaxed time during holidays.

Part of my fond memories includes dancing through the holiday season both in class and outside. One tradition that most dance studios keep during the holidays is going to skilled nursing facilities and other places housing folks who need a bit more looking after than a family can provide. We would go to two to three every year, so we had a whole program that we would do at each location. It was fun and good experience for the children and also taught them about what it means to do for others. The audiences love seeing children dance. Naturally, no matter how wonderful a performance our older kids and adults delivered, the little ones (our youngest students were three years old) always stole the show. I’m sure that has not changed, and I miss being part of that activity at this time of the year. Yet, I love thinking back to the dances I choreographed and the way the students got so involved in dancing for those audiences. It was a very giving experience for all of our students, and it made us feel as though we were one big family. Like others, the best memories always seem to reverberate an important theme for me during the holidays: family.

What are the memories that you hold dear that may or may no longer be part of your life for whatever reason? Does it give you joy to remember?

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© 2004–12 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.

8 responses to “what are your fond memories of holidays past

  1. I have 2 very favorite memories. When we were small mom and dad put the Christmas tree up after we went to bed. We awoke Christmas morning to find a beautiful tree with all the presents under it. When we got older dad began making Italian spaghetti and meatballs Christmas eve. He cooked all night and once a year on Christmas day all 6 siblings, spouses amd grandchildren, and mom and dad sat down to the most incredible meal imaginable.

  2. Hi Donna,
    I remember as a child having our Christmas program at church every year on Christmas Eve. We circled the pews in the church, the lights were turned off and each of us held a candle as we sang. I played the guitar one year to Silent Night. Mom was so proud of me. When we got home, Santa had always visited! We always had a special gift from Santa on Christmas morning. Mom said we must have been extra good because he stopped back by on his way home. 🙂 *Hugs!

  3. BreastCancerSisterhood

    This will be my second year without James, and since he died the day after Christmas, I imagine this year will come with it’s own set of challenges for me. I’m spending time with my best girlfriends since high school, who live near by, so that will be a huge comfort. Did the same thing last year, and they were a Godsend.

  4. Christmas…Fondest memory…. I grew up in a family of 8 where Christmas was celebrated to the fullest with many traditions….polyanna’s, children’s mass, live nativities, homemade ornaments, nut bread for all the neighbors etc.. I have continued with many of these family traditions as well as adding a few of our own. I have been battling (with the help of my husband, children, family and many doctors) cancer since 2004 (diagnosed while I was pregnant with our 3rd child) and though we have many traditions my fondest memory is a Christmas morning statement our oldest (Samantha)made in 2004(she was 10 at the time).We always go and cut down our own tree and it was always my job to water the tree. That year I had not only given birth 4 months before Christmas but I was doing a round of Taxol that was kicking my butt so watering the tree was something we just forgot. Christmas Eve I kept hearing faint random noises coming from our first floor, to exhausted to go down and investigate, I chalked it up to Raindeer Prancing and fell asleep. Christmas morning came, to the sheer delight of our 2 oldest children (8 and 4) at 6:30 in the morning. Samantha came running into our room (after she had venture downstairs to make sure Santa had come) shouting “Mom, Mom Santa left us presents and OUR Christmas tree is just like you it doesn’t have any hair!!!!” What I was hearing Christmas Eve were the needles falling off the tree. That tree was the most beautiful of trees that we had ever had, full and aromatic, but the children have since always called it our Charlie Brown tree Christmas.

    Sally Martinez
    PS.. located your blog while surfing HFS, Xeloda and brown toes. I have been on Xeloda since April 2012, 14 days on 7 days off and the side effects seem to be somewhat different and random each time each time. Happy though as the side effects have not been cumlative. If you are still on Xeloda a combination of Rescue Remedy Cream, Aquaphor and a curious 8 year old who likes to “peel the skin from Mommy’s feet” have been helpful. If I lived in your neck of the woods I would let you borrow the 8 year old (ha) as for the Cream and the Aquaphor, the Cream can be located on rescueremedy.com and Aquaphor at most drugs stores.

  5. we have three grown daughters so of course my memories are the fun time we had getting things ready for them I recall my oldies daughter wanted to leave cookies and milk for santa then she cried because they were gone.
    one year we saved all our S&H green stamps and bought Christmas gifts for the Girls from the S&H catalog ( wish we still got S&H stamps ) but I don’t
    think any store has them now. wonderful memories

  6. Arriving and being home for the holidays in Canada with family members that have now passed on. Trimming the tree, lighting many Christmas candles, making shortbread and other rich cookies with my dear mom, plum pudding with caramel sauce (precisely made by my chemical engineer dad), Clemantines, English cream candies and snapping open the “crackers” at the Christmas dinner table that held paper hats which we wore with our dressed up clothes on while eating. Many traditions went on year after year. I miss them. No children, brothers and sisters, husband so I’m alone now, yet grateful for wonderful female friends to be with. Thanks for asking Donna, took me back to wonderful memories…

  7. I may have mentioned that I used to do caroling every year or as an actress/singer was always doing some show or play at Xmas time. Those are my fondest memories. When I was A child and into my teens I was always in the church and school choirs. I also remember very fondly, way back we gathered at my maternal grandparents’ for a small Christmas eve supper, went to Midnight Mass and were allowed to open one presnt upon arriving home. Sometimes I don’t even think we slept before Christmas morning was upon us with more gift opening. My grandmother would make A brunch and our favorite dish was a French Canadian meat pie called a toutiere that was delicious. I’d love to rekindle these traditions someday. I think maybe that is why my spirit has dwindled over the years. There is a part of me who misses those traditions.

  8. Gosh Ruth, I sure still remember S&H green stamps. We were so excited to collect them to see what we could buy

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