I admit it, my memory is far from good…but I do have a favorite memory from Christmas as a child. Well, it’s a few things all rolled into one, and I am going to do my best to write it out and tell my story so you can live it through my words.
My father was a police officer my entire childhood. He worked a lot, and was gone for some holidays, because the law doesn’t stop for holidays. Law enforcement is usually needed even more during holidays actually. He always made a stop home for lunch or dinner, but if his radio went off and he was called out, forks were dropped and he headed out in a hurry.
I did not realize why my dad drank so much coffee on Christmas morning. I was a child, I had no idea, but now I do. Sometimes he had to work through the night. He would get home at the wee hours in the morning and then proceed to help “Santa” get set up, just to sleep for a measly few hours, at best, before us crazy kids were in the bed waking them up at 6am. Best part is, I don’t remember him ever complaining or letting any of us know he was exhausted.
We were not allowed to go into the living room to see if Santa had come, until my dad had checked it out. He would get up and stroll into the living room and on into the kitchen. We would hear him holler “I am not sure, but I think someone was here. There sure are a lot of presents out here” or something to that effect. Of course, we are sitting in bed with mom, giggling and waiting impatiently for him to return. He would make coffee for him and my mom, and stroll on back into the bedroom.
We always let my brother be first in line down the hallway, because he was the youngest. Seeing the tree lit up, cookies half eaten (or gone, thanks to “Santa” aka Dad), and the presents had doubled since the night before. It was so exciting. We would all pick a seat so we could get started. Usually my dad and I would be the ones to hand out the presents to the recipient on the label.
Once all the gifts were passed out, it was game on. Ripping things open, showing everyone what Santa had brought. Occasionally my mom would tell us what order to open certain gifts in, and now I understand that too, and have done it with my husband as recently as this past Christmas! My dad would be sitting with a big garbage bag near him, trying to collect the wrapping paper as we ripped it off our gifts. It really happened this way every year, and if we have the privilege of being together for Christmas nowadays, we do it pretty much the same way.
Gifts are now open, and us kids are eating chocolate at 7am and going through all of our new things. I would call my best friend and talk about everything and plan on a time to go to her house later that day. My dad would head on into the kitchen and start cooking sausage! We would almost always have sausage and biscuits for breakfast on Christmas. Boy do I always want that now if I am with them for Christmas! I can smell them now actually, and I am not even cooking anything!
So, in short, my favorite memory from Christmas as a child is the specific way the mornings had to go and how my dad, despite being exhausted and most likely working a late night shift, was the biggest kid of all and really enjoying that time we spent together.
What are some of your favorite childhood holiday memories??
Until Next Time,
Then Not-So-Single Mom
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