Thanks to Craig Davis for arranging a program of stories from Rotarians about their Christmas experiences as a child. We heard stories from across the generations, from the very very old down to those new to the slippery downward backslope.
Harvey shared his memories from the 1920s. There were no lights on the Christmas tree as they had no electricity... As for presents, each kid could ask for one thing they wanted. Often they got utilitarian things like clothes and games.
Gary said that he remembered the Christmas program at school and every one came. He said they got a tree out of the pasture and that in his early days they had no electricity. They decorated the tree with popcorn and paper chains-which he says were ugly. Dad always left to check hogs and while he was gone Santa came and Dad always missed Santa. Gary's favorite gift? A Red Rider bb gun.
Nancy related on how her family used many ornaments each year to decorate their tree, most of them simple and homemade. They always had a red candle that was lit every year only on Christmas. She remembered their Christmas Eve program and before would go to City Hall/Jail to see Santa... She got a bag of fruit and nuts from Santa. They used Dad's big socks for stockings. They opened gifts on Christmas day and then went to her grandparents home for a big dinner.
Kierstan said her family always went to the late Christmas Eve church service. She remembered they always drove by same house that was so well lit. Her family opened one gift on Christmas Eve. In the morning, kids could look at their Christmas stockings and then wake up parents. To make it more challenging, stockings were always hidden. Another game was "hide the pickle" in the tree and whoever found it got a special gift. They always took a "horrible" family picture on Christmas morning (perhaps a future Rotary program?). Now it is very difficult to get the whole family together for Christmas. They still do the Christmas picture and "Skype" in anyone who is not there.
THANKS TO ROTARY GIFT WRAPPERS!
(L to R) Denise Erpelding, Becky Patterson (front), Kierstan Peck (back), Don Patterson, DG Jacque Andrew, Gary Murphy, Becky Harkema, Michelle Redlinger
December 19: Bob Wollenberg - some kind of Christmas program
December 26: Rob Negrete - Lyle Moen & Nancy Rash travel log pics from Alaska!
January 2: Becky Harkema
January 9: Dennis Hunger
January 16: Club Forum!
January 23: Paul Horak - Blood Drive planning
January 30: Jim Gorham