When Christmas didn’t have Black Friday

When times were different . ..


I remember Christmas as a child.There was no Black Friday. In New England at that time there were no big box stores, but a real downtown area with a mix of department stores who had restaurants in the basement or the top floor, five and dime stores where you could sit at a lunch counter(okay so I am that old) and other restaurants that drew you in on a wintry day. There were movie theaters, not megaplexes, they were works art, and an inviting place to sit after shopping in the snow – the musicals were always the best.

Christmas candles in the windows of our house, a real tree which shared its woodsy scent and left pine needles in hidden places until Easter. My favorite thing was to sit in my favorite gift , a child’s red leather rocker. I would sit and stare at the tree for hours, watch the reflection of lights in the collection of ornaments, some round, some bird-like and be mesmerized as the tinsel moved either gently or violently as someone passed through the cozy living room.

No one was in a rush, no mad dash to get back to the computer, cell phone, XBox – they weren’t even on my radar as a five year-old. There would be a big family meal in the dining room, which was only used on Sundays and holidays. The best china and crystal would be carefully taken from the china cabinet and the buffet cabinet would hold bowls of fresh fruit and shelled nuts for cracking. And there would be grace said and if Christmas was on a Sunday, there would be church – a big part of my life growing up.

Whatever problems there were, we were not Father’s Knows Best or Leave it to Beaver, but on those indelibly memory-marked times, all was right in my world.

How about yours?

A tidal wave of humanity hits – and proves we have gone beyond decency and the real reason we celebrate – the birth of Christ. If this were an isolated incident, that would be one thing – unfortunately it’s not.

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