Christmas memories are as sharp as ever
Recently, while perusing YouTube, I came across a clip of Mitch Miller and his orchestra, playing “Must Be Santa.” Watching it brought back memories of the ’60s, while living on Seneca Street. I was a young girl, and had nine older siblings (six brothers and three sisters) of whom many were old enough to be engaged, a couple married.
Every Christmas all of us would gather for a delicious meal and wonderful conversation. And only on Christmas were we allowed to use the pocket doors to the large living room, where we would all gather. The huge Christmas tree was lit up and beautiful from our efforts the night before at our Christmas Eve get-together. We would sit on the floor or available furniture, and my mother would excitedly hand out the sheets of song lyrics from Miller’s record set. She would play the record and we would all sing our hearts out to the traditional Christmas carols.
Now Miller is gone, and so are my parents and some of my siblings. But that was two days of complete family time, separate and seemingly sequestered from the rest of the world. We had each other’s total attention. No one had phones ringing in their pockets, nor were they even thinking of leaving to go shopping. We knew all that we needed was right there in that room, shielded from the disruptions that laid beyond the pocket doors.
Now that I’m older, I see the wisdom in my mother’s rule that made those pocket door off-limits except for Christmas. They were a symbol of our togetherness as a family. Yes, time goes by and so many things are no more. But the memories are as fresh as yesterday.