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s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad

lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
When I was about 8 we had moved from Wilmington DE to Richmond VA and it was a HUGE deal to my mom's family (all born, breed and never left DE),  Mom was the first to 'leave the nest'.    The plan was for us to drive up to DE on Xmas day for a week. 

 I got an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas and I so badly wanted to make a cake for grandma.    So my parents let me make the cake.  I iced the cake with chocolate icing. Wrapped up in plastic wrap and held it on my lap for FOUR hours while we drove to DE.   I get out of the car, slipped on some ice and landed... you guessed it, on the cake.  

I was devastated.








What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
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Re: s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad

  • When I lived in France, I went with my host families for the extended family Christmas thing.  With host dad's family, she lined up all the grandkids in the living room and started handing out envelopes.  When she got to me, she put the envelope in front of me and said "whoops, that's not for you" and gave it to the person next to me.  Each kid opened their envelope while I had nothing.  Each envelope held 50 euros.  Talka bout a slap in the face!
  • I remember the Christmas I found out Santa wasn't real.  Christmas Eve, my sisters took the sleigh bells we always hung on the front door and stood under my window shaking them.  I was convinced I not only heard Santa but saw him fly off as well which is what I told everyone excitedly Christmas morning.  My sisters laughed at me and the middle one told me then that Santa didn't exist.  My parents were not happy. 
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  • PhoneCardLadyPhoneCardLady member
    500 Comments Third Anniversary 25 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    http://www.vintage-bliss.com/image-files/tubsy.jpg

    I remember how excited I was to get Tubsy!  She was better than my baby sister that I got in November of that year!
  • When I was like 7-8 we went to Scotland for Christmas. This was a big deal since none of our family had been with any kids during Christmas, and both my brother and I woke up in the middle of the night and opened all of our presents. Everyone was so so SO pissed. I think my granny cried. I feel real bad about that now.
  • My parents and I went to a tree farm to cut down our Christmas tree.  We finally found one that looked like it would fit in our living room (it had high, second story vaulted ceilings so they needed a tall tree).

    We cut it down and attached it to our car, it was so large it was hanging off of both ends by a couple of feet.

    When we got the tree home, it was too large for the living room, so my dad had to take it back outside to cut the trunk with a chainsaw (a la Christmas Vacation).  While he and my mom were lugging the tree back inside, a squirrel decided to climb aboard and we didn't notice until we had it up.

    Once it was finally up inside (although undecorated), we heard the squirrel, freaked out and quickly pulled the tree back outside and tried to chase the squirrel out of the tree.

    We finally got him out of the tree and put it inside for the 3rd time.  We still couldn't fit the star at the top of the tree.

    We will forever have that Christmas and tree be known as the Griswold Family Christmas tree. The next year we got a fake tree that we've used ever since.
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  • One year my grandma wrapped a highlighter for me.  As a gift.  Yeah.

    My sisters and I always helped my dad pick out the Christmas tree, but one year he bought one without us.  We all took one look at the tree he picked and started bawling because it was "the UGLIEST tree EVER."  He had to take it back to town and exchange it for one we approved of.
    panther
  • My Dad hung sleigh bells outside the bathroom window with a string tied to them running inside the house.  When it was time for us to go to bed he would pull the string and tell us Santa was on the roof and we had to go to sleep quickly.  I swear we could hear reindeer hooves walking around on the roof. 

    I never caught on until years later when I found the bells in a box. 
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  • Lynda, your cake story reminds me of a non-Christmas story.  I have a favorite "aunt" (just a good friend of my mom's) that loves all things pig.  So when I was in Belgium, I found and bought this adorable chocolate pig for her.  I carried it in my bag for the next 6 weeks, checking it every night to make sure it didn't break.  I checked it before my flight back, on my layover in Detroit, and when I went to show my mom at the airport in Phoenix, it was shattered.  I may or may not have cried (I was 19 at the time).
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  • It wasn't really a great or awful memory, but one Christmas both of my parents had pneumonia. I was about 15, and my brother was 9. My mom got better a little faster than my dad, but she wasn't in great shape either. On christmas eve, my dad called me into his room (he hadn't been out of bed in days) and asked what day it was. When I told him, he freaked out because he hadn't bought anything for my mom, so he gave me his debit card and told me to ask her for a ride to target. She was still sick, so she waited in the car while my brother and I quickly scrounged up presents - a Celtic CD, some blue mittens, and a pack of different colored pens (she's a teacher, this was not totally awful). To this day, she swears their some of the nicest presents she's ever gotten. My brother and I wrapped each other's christmas gifts (my parnets had gone shopping before they got sick). On Christmas day, we had Chinese food for dinner. It was so nice to have an entire christmas without unneeded stress or drama, it's just ashame my parents were too sick to enjoy it ;)
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  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_tell-one-of-christmas-memories-good-bad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:945d5754-7eac-47d4-ad3a-81f2f3fc7c62Post:e361857e-8a0d-4ba7-8349-c962aa4907ba">Re: s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad</a>:
    [QUOTE]When I lived in France, I went with my host families for the extended family Christmas thing.  With host dad's family, she lined up all the grandkids in the living room and started handing out envelopes.  When she got to me, she put the envelope in front of me and said "whoops, that's not for you" and gave it to the person next to me.  Each kid opened their envelope while I had nothing.  Each envelope held 50 euros.  Talka bout a slap in the face!
    Posted by chelseamb11[/QUOTE]

    <div>Ouch.</div><div>
    </div><div>We had an exchange student.  She got gifts.  </div><div>
    </div><div>She was even invited to brunch my Grandma would host for only her grandkids (grandpa and her kids were not invited, only her grandkids).</div>






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_tell-one-of-christmas-memories-good-bad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:945d5754-7eac-47d4-ad3a-81f2f3fc7c62Post:c5b1f3ed-a208-45e9-8817-6ec9839eb2f7">Re: s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad</a>:
    [QUOTE]It wasn't really a great or awful memory, but one Christmas both of my parents had pneumonia. I was about 15, and my brother was 9. My mom got better a little faster than my dad, but she wasn't in great shape either. On christmas eve, my dad called me into his room (he hadn't been out of bed in days) and asked what day it was. When I told him, he freaked out because he hadn't bought anything for my mom, so he gave me his debit card and told me to ask her for a ride to target. She was still sick, so she waited in the car while my brother and I quickly scrounged up presents - a Celtic CD, some blue mittens, and a pack of different colored pens (she's a teacher, this was not totally awful). To this day, she swears their some of the nicest presents she's ever gotten. My brother and I wrapped each other's christmas gifts (my parnets had gone shopping before they got sick). On Christmas day, we had Chinese food for dinner. It was so nice to have an entire christmas without unneeded stress or drama, it's just ashame my parents were too sick to enjoy it ;)
    Posted by krizzo17[/QUOTE]

    <div>This reminds me of the other Christmas my whole family got food poisoning from some expired lunchmeat my mom had just bought from the store the day before.  My little brother was the only one who wouldn't eat the turkey for lunch on Christmas Eve.  He must have known something was up because the rest of us got sick.  It started with the smallest of us (me) and work its way through until my dad had it during christmas day.  </div><div>
    </div><div>I didn't start eating turkey lunchmeat until last year because of it.</div>
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  • I had a cousin pass away one Christmas, she was pretty sickly and had just been discharged from the hospital (too early in most people's opinion).  Ok that was depressing...

    Every year for Christmas my younger cousin and I always got the same things because we had to be equal to show that there were no favorites.  I mean, c'mon!  I was so pumped that I got the Barbie Horse with Stable set... why did my cousin have to get the same thing (and still take all of the parts for herself!) Grrrr...
  • lbarr, so sorry to hear about your cousin who passed.  That makes for a very sad Christmas.
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  • Oh, one year for Christmas almost my entire family got the violent 24-hour stomach flu.  We had my grandparents, aunt, uncle and cousin visiting from California so our house was full and my sisters and I shared bedrooms to make more room.  The night before Christmas Eve, my youngest sister woke up feeling icky, and my aunt woke up to sounds of her puking her guts out.  My aunt went to help her, and later my aunt started feeling pukey.  Then my uncle woke up, went to the bathroom down the hall with diarhea and puked in my dad's trash can.  My mom got sick.  Another one of my sisters got sick.  My cousin was sick.  After breakfast my dad got sick and then my grandpa got sick.  I was waiting for it to hit me, but it never did.

    That evening we all went to bed and I woke up in the middle of the night to sounds of my sister I was sharing a bed with starting to get sick.  I thought for sure I was fucked, but yeah, myself and my grandma were the only ones who didn't fall ill.
    panther
  • This story actually could go with my sig picture below.

    Climb into a time machine with me.  The first year Christmas my exhusband and I were dating I was very excited to be going to the holiday dinner at his parents and meet the remainder of the family I had not yet met. 

    My sister had been away at college and when she arrived home, we got a little too into the "Jack" that Christmas Eve.  As I went to take her home she tumble down some steps towards me and caught my left eye with a hard smack (totally innocent but boy did it hurt).  You guessed it, I woke up Christmas day with a shiner!  So the first time I met the "inlaws" I had a redneck black eye, WELCOME TO THE FAMILY!

  • Every year my sister and I drive around town & look at Christmas lights.  We get hot cocoa & walk around downtown & just hang out.  It's always fun, and it's something I will miss if either of us ever moves away.

  • One time my mom tried to cook Christmas dinner. She doest cook. If I remember correctly, she cooked a pre-cooked ham and that was it. No sides.. I had hashbrowns and top ramen for dinner.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_tell-one-of-christmas-memories-good-bad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:945d5754-7eac-47d4-ad3a-81f2f3fc7c62Post:803f3068-3258-4c20-86db-9703335d2f6f">Re: s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad</a>:
    [QUOTE]lbarr, so sorry to hear about your cousin who passed.  That makes for a very sad Christmas.
    Posted by July2012bride[/QUOTE]

    <div>I think it became more sad when I got older.  I was so young I didn't understand why everyone was so upset and quiet on Christmas.  </div>
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I'm sorry Ibarr.


    Ski - that is funny.


    Sorry about all the sickness some of you had to deal with.  We've been lucky in that regards.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • The worst Christmas I had was when I was 18. The rest of my family had passed away so my sister and I were all alone for Christmas. We had no money, no gifts or anything. I think we had a small tree someone bought for us. It was depressing. My then boyfriend said he would spend Christmas with us but couldn't because it was important to his family for him to be around. A few hours later I found out he was hanging out with friends and not family. Maybe I was just being sensitive but it really hurt. We were all alone on Christmas for the first time. It sucked. 

    I have two really great Christmas memories. One when I was around 7 or 8. We woke up Christmas morning and there was a huge table in our living room. It was covered with toys. I couldn't even see what color the table was because there were so many toys. No free space left. In front of the table there were two beautiful bikes for us. It was epic. 

    My first Christmas with H was also very special. I worked hard that year to make sure we had extra. My daughter was very spoiled that Christmas. It felt good. 
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  • eoreaeorea member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Thanks, Rachers. I cried for the rest of the night. It sucked. He made it seem like I was upset for no reason. Looking back now he feels really bad about it. I think he was too immature at the time to realize how much of a big deal it was to me.
    image
  • I think my worst Christmas ever (and thank goodness it's nothing as dramatic or devastating as eorea or lbarr) was in 2004.  I was stationed in Kandahar at the time with the Army & spent my Christmas pulling guard duty in a tower so the lower enlisted kids could sleep that night.  We couldn't even call home or use the computer because of some crazy sandstorm- it blocked all the signals :(  I couldn't even call home from Afghanistan to tell my family I was ok.  Looking at some of these other stories though, I guess it wasn't all that bad- I had a family back home waiting for me, I was with the toughest but coolest bunch of men you'll ever meet, and we were healthy for the most part.  All in all, I'm lucky that's my worst Christmas.
  • First memory that popped into my head is when my uncle came into our house the week of Christmas, and told us he'd just killed Rudolph.  Boy did he regret that because he had three nieces crying their heads off and screaming. I think we were 3, 6 and 9?
  • My parents used to go all out to make us believe in Santa. We would bake cookies for Santa, and set them out with milk. There were also some carrots for the reindeer. My dad was still in the AF, so he pressed his combat boots into the fireplace ash to look like someone came down the chimney.

    In the morning, the carrots, milk and cookies were always gone. My parents would stay up late, assembling our presents and eating Santa's snacks.
  • When we did carrots for the reindeer, in the morning they would be half-eaten with tooth marks in them. My mom always said it was because reindeer eat slowly and Santa couldn't stop at the house for that long, so they had to grab a bite and keep going.
  • I got the gene of not being able to keep a secret from my Mom. I remember the first time I really found that out about her. When we were really little, they totally had us believing in Santa and there were always presents from him under the tree etc. When I was older, I think maybe 7 and not believing in Santa anymore, there was some supermarket shopping Barbie I really really wanted (I know right, why was my big ambition to be a blonde barbie buying groceries for her man in a short tight skirt at the supermarket?). Anyway, my mom had a hard time finding one and when she finally did, she was really excited for me to know and she was struggling to wait until Christmas for me to find out. I forget exactly how it happened, all I know is that she found some excuse to lead me into her walk-in closet to get something and was all "OOPS! What do we have here??" And it was a gift wrapped box with my barbie inside. At first I was so mad at her but then I opened it, forgave her, and was just super happy to get to play with it early. Ever since, I always end up wanting to know surprises beforehand and she's always relieved to be able to tell me. It drives the rest of my family and FI crazy. I want to say we're both working on it but it's hard, man.
  • Special- that's so sweet!  I used to get thank you notes for leaving snacks out for various imaginary gift givers... my grandpa, the Easter Bunny, and Santa all had the same handwriting :P

    and I love your dress!  Soooo pretty with the detail and I really like the straps- they add so much to the dress!
  • I haven't read all of these yet, but my sisters and I used to wake up super early on Christmas morning (like most kids) and try to wake my parents up at like 5 or 6 am to open presents, after they'd been up till 2am wrapping all of them.

    So one year, my mom put the ocsillating fan at the end of the hallway with caution tape stretched to the wall on either side with a sign that said "DO NOT CROSS THIS LINE OR WAKE US UP UNTIL 8AM OR SANTA IS TAKING ALL THE PRESENTS BACK", so all three of us took our pillows and blankets into the hallway and fell asleep there.  My dad ended up waking up at around 7 anyways and took a picture of us sleeping there with the sign.
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_tell-one-of-christmas-memories-good-bad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:945d5754-7eac-47d4-ad3a-81f2f3fc7c62Post:4972e87a-fcaf-42f5-a1fe-17e8e4b3541b">Re: s/o Tell me one of your Christmas memories good or bad</a>:
    [QUOTE]My parents used to go all out to make us believe in Santa. We would bake cookies for Santa, and set them out with milk. There were also some carrots for the reindeer. My dad was still in the AF, so he pressed his combat boots into the fireplace ash to look like someone came down the chimney. In the morning, the carrots, milk and cookies were always gone. My parents would stay up late, assembling our presents and eating Santa's snacks.
    Posted by specialk84[/QUOTE]

    <div>Aw! More proof that your parents are awesome. That is so cute. </div>
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  • One year when I was probably around 10 or 11, I decided to try to sneak around to find presents early. I was poking around in my mom's closet and saw the top of a Barbie box. I was so disappointed as I had stopped playing with barbies years earlier. I prepared myself for getting the Barbie to make sure I smiled and all that.

    Christmas came and no Barbie. I went back into mom's closet and investigated a litle more. It was the box from a Holiday Barbie I had gotten from when I was 7. I guess my mom had saved it to put her in. Serves me right for snooping that I thought I was getting a little kid gift.
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