It’s easy, as an adult, to get bogged down in the un-fun, stressful aspects of Christmas. The mall becomes a madhouse that empties your wallet. Meals have to be planned and cookies baked. The house has to be decorated, inside and out, cards must be sent, and presents need to be wrapped. And that’s not to mention all the tension and drama that can arise when family members come together. But most of us, if we dig deep enough into our photo albums, can find evidence of a time when Christmas was just awesome.
Do you remember how it felt, as a kid, when you woke up in the middle of the night, wondering when it would be okay to rouse Mom and Dad to see what Santa put under the tree? My little brother used to get us all up before dawn, until my parents told us we had to wait until 5 a.m. I’d go in his room around 4:30 a.m., and find him wide awake, bouncing in anticipation. We’d sit on his bed and watch the clock, and talk about the size and shape of packages under the tree that we’d examined and shaken and committed to memory. We’d talk strategy: who’d wake Mom, who’d wake Dad. At 4:58, we’d run to our parents’ room and jump on them. Finally, we’d drag them out to the glory of the tree, already lit up, our one big toy each set up and ready for play.
“My husband and I discovered we both saw the same Santa, when I was 4 and he was 5 in the ’40s.”
Like me, many of our community members at Show & Tell can remember that magnificent moment when they first saw their new bike or doll or teddy bear—and they have the family Christmas photos to prove it. Or, to put a fancypants name on it, they shared their vernacular photography. If you’re feeling low on Christmas cheer, check out these snapshots, like the picture of marcobabe13 (above), holding her new doll in 1952.
Click through the slideshow below, and I promise you’ll be feeling jolly in no time flat.
Slideshow: Christmases Past
Packrat-place is overjoyed to discover a bicycle under the tree in 1958. "The only problem is you cannot ride a bicycle in December in Chicago. I had to wait until spring."
Merry Christmas to our Show & Tell community! Special thanks to Manikin for starting this thread, posting multiple holiday stories—including her Christmas at age 1, her first big-kid bike, and a Christmas doll. Thanks to marcobabe13 for issuing the “Christmas Past” challenge, posting early Christmas photos from her family and her husband’s. Thanks to packrat-place, Pop_abides (posting here and here), miragirl, Bonnie, Hunter, Ted_Straub, Savoychina1, and Vestaswind for playing along.