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Thursday, December 4

A Christmas Memory


Each year during December, I often have memories of Christmas in my childhood days. We lived in rural southern Ontario and the winters back then were much like the winter we had here last year. There was always lots of snow on the ground and we always looked forward to having fun in the snow.

Back then, Christmas was a time for family. We didn't get much from Santa. I remember one year when my brother got a metal farm tractor and wagon and a wooden barn that my mother had made. She had cut the entire barn out of plywood, hinged the double door and painted it red. The tractor and wagon fit inside perfectly. This was an amazing gift for my brother, as he was crazy about farm life. He played with these things for hours, pretending to drive into the fields, pick up hay and straw and store it inside of that barn that mother had spent hours making after we kids were tucked in and fast asleep.

I think one of my best Christmases was the year I received a pair of skates from Santa. They fit perfectly. Though they weren't new, they were new to me and they were the first pair of white ice skates I'd ever had. I was ecstatic.

My interests were of an outdoor nature. I loved to visit the old red barn. When I stepped through the door on a cold winter day, it seemed so cozy and warm inside. I would find a spot to sit in the hay and listen to the cows lowing, as they chewed their cuds. I loved trudging through the snow in the barnyard to visit the chickens and geese. A visit to the horse barn was always in order, because that is where my favorite team, Punch and Maude were housed.

Punch and Maude were the team that always pulled the sleigh and they were well matched. Often, on a Sunday afternoon, and always on Christmas day, Grandpa would hook the team to the sleigh and ask who wanted to go for a ride. I never passed up the opportunity to snuggle in the straw with great-grandpa while the horses pulled us over hill and dale, across bridges and over icy streams. We would wave as we passed neighbors who were going about their chores and they would wave back. As twilight descended, we would head back to the horse where there was a hot meal waiting.

My memories of these sleigh rides are happy ones. Those were the days when simple things were what melded families together. Though we didn't have much, we never considered ourselves as being poor. Instead we were rich with the love of family and happy times together.

Enjoy the week and remember to do an random act of kindness for someone less fortunate. Say a kind word or give someone who looks down your best smile. There are times when a smile from a stranger is a great blessing to those who are struggling with the issues of life. ~Blessings, Mary~

22 comments:

  1. Those are such fun memories Mary. I've noticed that many of my best memories are of simple things - not things that were expensive. Your;s seem to be too.

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  2. I'm sure every upbringing has its merits and faults, but I can well imagine that there must be some special memories to those brought up rural in that time frame.

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  3. Great memories.
    I haven't been on pair of ice skates for ages.
    I don't know what it is the snow seem deeper and more of it when I was younger.

    Coffee is on.

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  4. Not too many snowy Christmas memories for me. I think I can remember one Christmas that it snowed.. 1989.. and all my children were grown by then.

    Snow just makes me want to stay in and hibernate.

    You have some wonderful memories, Mary. Thanks for sharing them with us.

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  5. thank you for sharing you found memories with us.

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  6. aww what sweet memories. i remember getting toys like that too when I was little, the simple fun of simple toys is what made us happy unlike the expensive ones kids seem to want now.

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  7. What wonderful memories - sounds a lot like Little House on the Prairie. We didn't have much as kids either, but we sure had fun.

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  8. As I am reading this the "Christmas Story" is on the t.v. It reminds me of growing up in the 50's...seems things were much simpler then. Your Christmas Memory' is just the kind of thing that takes me back and makes me long for the simpler days. Thanks for sharing it with us. Take care and God Bless...

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  9. I love the picture you used on this post! The farm set that your brother got sounds perfect. I grew up on a farm as well, but our "sleigh" was usually pulled by a neighbors tractor.

    I sent your Christmas swap book today. Happy reading!

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  10. Oh my gosh....the way your wrote this out it was like going back in time and actually being there with you in the horse drawn sleigh...with the soft flakes of snow falling on our cheeks....all bundled up yet warm inside...in the heart. Wow...
    Fantastic Mary.

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  11. Thanks for the memories, Mary. I always love hearing about the sleigh. I think because we didn't have much, we appreciated things more.
    I picked up the button.
    Mama Bear

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  12. What wonderful memories ... and a lovely reminder about practicing kindness each day too.
    Hugs and blessings,

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  13. This is such a beautiful recollection of memories. It is my desire that our life on the farm will create such memories for our grandchildren. We are the only family members who live in the country and even the grand nieces and nephews love coming here.

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  14. A lovely winter story. Your mother must have worked hard to make that barn...very creative and memorable. Hope you are feeling better!

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  15. Now that sounded worthy of a Hallmark movie. I love the old days...most of them before my time. Times about family and the true meaning of Christmas....Christ.
    I think I will take your lead and do a post on a special Christmas memory.
    This was great girl...I enjoyed seeing a little of your past. :)

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  16. I absolutely loved reading this, Mary...you painted such a charming picture with your words of your childhood memories!

    (Have you heard of the magazine, Good Old Days? This would be perfect to submit!)

    It's it amazing that it's not the quantity of presents that kids receive but meaning behind special ones and the simple pleasures of memories being made that mean the most!

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  17. You were so blessed to have grown up on a farm...I know that life was hard but there were so many wonderful things that you could do that us city kids couldn't. Listening to my mom talk about growing up on a farm, the sleigh and wagon rides, the animals, the barn, etc, always made me wish I could have grown up on one:-) Beautiful memories you shared with us today dear Mary. xoxo

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  18. Riding in a sleigh with horses pulling it is something that I have wanted to do all of my life!! You are so fortunate to have done that. I was brought up on a farm too and remember a lot of what you were describing!! What fun!! Kids don't know what real fun and memories are do they? Sandy

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  19. Mary-I loved reading about your Christmas Past. So touching!

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  20. I love hearing of my friends memories of their childhood Chrtistmas...
    thanks for sharing yours with us...

    have a wonderful holiday Season...

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