Remembering My Idaho Christmas

By Diana Green

When I was a small child, we did not have a lot of possessions; but we did not know the difference. We had a father that added fun and happiness by sharing his love, acceptance, jokes, and laughter. At Christmastime I helped decorate the Christmas tree with fascinating bubble lights. My dad worked six days a week, so we decorated our tree the Sunday before Christmas.

When the bubble lights were plugged in an outlet, we would pick our favorite color and bet on which would start bubbling up first. We thought the lights were cool and our tree was amazing! We looked for our longest sock before going to bed so that Santa could fill it to the brim. On Christmas Day, Santa would arrive, fill our socks with lots of candy, and place a gift for us to enjoy.

We attended Christmas dinner at my aunt and uncle’s ranch at Mann’s Creek along with my dad’s nine brothers and sisters plus all their children. Noise filled the air with ladies talking, laughing, and catching up on their lives while they were preparing our Christmas dinner. We children were excited about all the new toys and games, so we brought some to show everyone or some for all to play. The men helped when needed and entertained each other with the latest news.

The home had the latest technology of the 1950s. After dinner we would descend into the basement and watch “reel-to-reel tapes” my uncle had taken of family plus a surprise addition of the latest cartoons like Tom and Jerry and Bugs Bunny. We loved watching the cartoons!

There was generally fresh snow and ice on the ground, and it was beautiful. We would put on coats, gloves, snow pants, and warm caps and then go outside to play with our cousins. Soon we become so cold that we wanted to retreat back into the warmth of the house.

My dad’s sisters and brothers along with our cousins were very important to our family. They were not just an extended family but included us in every way possible. Dad and we children all had great love and adoration for them.

This is how Christmas became so important to my happiness in the month of December. It is a time I hold extra-special because it represents the birth of Christ, and it is also a time for showing our love and sharing for family and friends now as well in my past!

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