December 24, 2011

When I was a child, this was the day that my dad would take each of us (ten kids in all) to the “five and ten cent store” so that we could buy gifts for one another. The gifts would be small and, as I look back on them, maybe a little amusing: a box of bandaids, a set of barrettes, a box of paperclips… We loved receiving these things; when you live in a house with so many other people, there’s something very cool about having a hundred paperclips of your very own.

What impresses me now, is that my father was able to keep track of all the gifts–he remembered who had purchased what for whom, so that we didn’t receive ten barrettes and no crayons, for example.

Wrapping the gifts was highly secretive and fun, and opening them took hours. We opened gifts on Christmas Eve, one at at time. Our parents usually bought us clothes, our grandmother made pajamas for each of us, one of our aunts gave us a box of Fanny Farmer French Mints (to this day, that is the taste of Christmas Eve for me).

Whoever you are, reading this, I thank you for visiting my website, and hope you have good memories of your own childhood. I love the connections we make through our reading and writing.