Monday, December 21, 2009

Stop for a minute....

I have been busy this season...shocking, I know. With the addition of my new baby, I have literally felt like I have been in a dead run this whole month. Not that I haven't had fun. I plan on posting all the fun stuff we've done next, but I really wanted to write some stuff down tonight. In the last few days, I have been reminded of some wonderful holiday memories that I have had, and I really wanted to record these. It may be boring to you, but they were cool to me:

1) When I was 11 or so, we had gone to the Capitol Theatre to see Mannheim Steamroller do their Christmas concert (this totally puts me in the 80's). We got there early (as we did with everything my dad drove us to) so we walked over to see the ZCMI windows. They were just about to unveil them when we got there, and it was so cool to be one of the first people to see them. My then Stake President was CEO of ZCMI at the time, and put us in front of the line. I miss the candy windows. We took the kids downtown last night, and I was sad they weren't there.

2) A year before I got married, I was attending the "All-Star singles ward" in the Olympus Cove. I was going through a really rough time that Christmas and was not in the holiday spirit in any way, shape or form. Peter Breinholt (musician) was the Sunday school teacher and the Sunday before Christmas he chose not to give a formal lesson. He just brought his guitar and sang. It was really cool watching snow fall outside the window while he sang "Silent Night". Every time I play his Christmas cd, I think of how much that helped me feel christmasy when I really didn't want to.

3) We had a neighbor growing up that started a luminary tradition on our street. Everyone really got into it the first year and our whole street glowed with white paper bags. It had dumped snow that day as well, and we ran up and down the street with our friends making "Santa's Runway".

4) This was a yearly thing, but when my dad pushed the couch to the wall in the basement, we knew Christmas was here. It's such a stupid thing, but having the furniture in "Christmas position" was so thrilling!

5) For our honeymoon, Bill and I spent Christmas in Maui. We attended a Luau on Christmas Eve, and it was really cool to be there. We went to the beach on Christmas day. A lot quieter than our Christmas's now.

6) The first time I saw the Nutcracker (age 5 or so), I literally danced around the streets of downtown the rest of the day, I thought it was so beautiful. As a high schooler, I worked at the Ballet West boutique, often on Christmas Eve. It was fun to feed off everyone's energy of the season.

7) Bill and I went to Disneyland for our 3rd anniversary, no kids. We had never been together. It was, of course, Christmastime, but nobody was out of school yet. We literally ran down Main Street together, hand in hand. Disney and Christmastime....2 magical events. Perfect Disneyland day. Good weather, no crowds, and no kids to slow us down (J/K).

8) You'll die at this one, but when I was in high school, as a family and a few friends, we watched "A Very Brady Christmas" on TV. As campy as it was, we enjoyed every second. There were 9 different plot lines and we hung on every line. At the end, as were waiting for the last plot line to resolve itself, we found ourselves chanting for Sam, the butcher to come back. He did. Sad.

9) I got to be Mary in our church program. I think I was about 4. My mom sewed me a beautiful blue Mary costume that I still have. Emi wore it in our New York Christmas pageant at my brother's house (with a very cute, but grumpy Angel Caroline...sorry, Kathryn). I remember feeling so proud to carry my doll and be the mother of Jesus. I slept in the costume for weeks.

10) I sang in our Jr. High choir. We sang all over during Christmas time. Mrs. Taggart, the choir teacher, was and is legendary! She drilled the actions of "The Twelve Days" and "Twas the Night before Christmas" into us like Sue Sylvester (Glee). To this day, 21 years later, I can do all actions, as can my sister who is 9 years older!

Thank you for reliving my memories. I had to stop and reminisce so I could enjoy my Christmas today. This year, my memories will probably be Quinn running around singing Jingle Bells....which is great, but he doesn't know how to end the song. Merry Christmas to all! Feel free to share your favorite Christmas memories =-)


12 comments:

Monika said...

These are great! And, thanks to Quinn, now Derek sings Jingle Bells too!

Ashley said...

These are really sweet and Christmas-y and fun to read. I am jealous of the Peter Brienholt one and can totally relate to the furniture in the "Christmas position."

Cindy said...

Love the memories and thoughts for new traditions (love the luminaries idea! and preparing the landing strip for Santa!).....and how did I miss the "Allstar Singles Ward?"....I LOVE Pete!!!....not that I wanted to marry him or anything.....I just think he is sooooo cool....him and his little bald self:)

brooke said...

This is by far my favorite post you have ever done. This totally got me in the Christmas spirit and got me thinking of my own Christmas memories. I love the furniture in Christmas position and the thought of you all cheering for Sam the butcher to come back made me laugh. Love your jr. high choir teacher, a la Sue Sylvester! The best though was your all star singles ward experience with Peter Brienholt. Awesome. I love that guy.

Edwards Family said...

I agree with Brooke. This made my day! Thanks for sharing :) It made me think of my Red Neck Christmas memories :)

Emily K. said...

Ah, Mrs. Taggart and the memories (or nightmares) she brings.

Thanks for stirring my own Christmas memories!

Karen said...

Love this post. Love the memories, the feelings and the Glee reference. Glad to know you're a fan.

Thanks for reminding me about the little things. And strangely enough, it helped me chill out about "making" memories with my family. They just happen. All on their own.

Bill said...

One of the best things about you, Liz is your commitment to preserve family traditions and memories. This was fun. My List:
1. Getting to climb on the roof to hang the lights (Then & Now)
2. Total yardsale wipeout running from the neighbor's house when doing the 12 days of Christmas. (6yrs ago?)
3. Caroling in Tierra Del Fuego Argentina (1991)
4. When Santa showed up in a Winnebego to our family party (1980?) Got me wondering...???
5. Maui Christmas: Unwrapping presents and you (1998)
6. Santa brought the motorized JEEP for Parker and he jumped in and almost ran us and the tree over (2004?)
7. Pinky and the Brain Christmas video (anytime)
8. Saying "It's a Christmas Miracle" or "Chrishmish" ala Ricky's Mom from "Better off Dead" (any year)
FYI...still boggles the mind that we were both in the AllStar Ward and never met there. Peter B. was my home teacher. And my hometeaching comp. lived acrros the street from your parents...talk about degrees of Kevin Bacon!!!!

Rebekah said...

really great memories, thanks for sharing Liz!

Stacey said...

Love this post! I'm going to have to do the same, even though it is a bit late for Christmas...

John said...

Thanks for sharing your memories. Yes, the moving of the couch in the family room definitely signaled Christmas, just as moving the couch back meant we were headed back to school. The other crucial element was the perennial red shag carpet... very 70's but very crucial in my mind.

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