As I reflect on my childhood growing up with four other siblings, I can now come to the realization of how dedicated our mother was to the lengthy preparation for Christmas Day.
The first memory I have is of how soon after Thanksgiving Day, she transformed the house from turkeys, cornucopia, etc., to candy canes, Christmas bells and Santa Clauses. These decorations were not store-bought, but her own creations. My mother made decorations for every occasion, especially window decorations. They were hung proudly in the windows, and could be seen by many who passed by. She was very creative and could use the simplest materials, such as felt and sequins, and transform them into Christmas wreaths and shirt pins. She created these decorations with much love, and with pride I continue to display the wreaths and wear the pins. It would make my mother very happy to also give these pins to many people, such as the postmaster in our small village of Farnham, or to a cashier in a store and to the nursing home staff and patients at Lake Shore Hospital. I shared with my siblings the week before Christmas the wonderful aromas coming from the kitchen as we opened the door, coming home from school. The large dining room table would be covered with cookies. My mother baked cookies, cakes and homemade fudge not only for our family but for our friends and neighbors. These memories are the very special memories I have of the Christmas season. The cherished family traditions that my mother created with love and determination to give her children the best Christmases ever!