Friday, December 4, 2009

Honoring the Memory of My Parents

We always thought Mom was the Christmas fanatic, but Dad was almost as bad. One year I was home at Thanksgiving, and I accompanied him to a warehouse store. He took me over to the Christmas decorations and showed me a Christmas village-- the village of Bethlehem, complete with a stable, city gates, palm trees, figurines, etc. He pointed to it proudly. "It's nice," I said, "But I don't have anyplace to put it."
"Yes, you do. It would be perfect on the gateleg table in the hall."
I bought the village.
Mom was into greenery, like the wreath above, or the garlands below.
There was no such thing as too much garland, or too many poinsettias.
Even the corners had to be decorated.

Last year, I chose not to put out all the decorations. This year I put out more, but not all. I only put up 2 of the Christmas trees, for example. Dad would be very disappointed that I didn't put up all the outside lights he worked so hard to make easier to install. I gave up outdoor decorations the year I fell off the ladder and hit my head.
Daughter, C, and I worked on them for 4 hours over the course of 2 nights this week. I put them up to honor the memory of my parents. I'm sure they would be pleased.


maeve said...

Is that your house? The woodwork is spectacular! It must be at least 100 years old. Oh, sorry, I'm not supposed to be focusing on this but on your willingness to put up all of these decorations, notwithstanding your grief. You're an amazing woman!!

I've been reading every day and hoping that Miss Daughter is feeling more stable. You do such a great job of supporting her without enabling. It can't be easy!

Anonymous said...

Very nice decorations. Very nice memories. Thank you for sharing both the memories and the photos. KJK

Reverend Mom said...

Maeve, it's my home, but the church's house. It was built in 1900, and the woodwork is amazing. There are hardwood floors downstairs in the main hall, living room, study, and dining room. All the woodwork was refinished before I moved in 13+ years ago. I feel very blessed to live here. There are double pocket doors to both the living room and the study. They are framed with garland, as you can see.

Thanks. You know how hard it was for me....

maeve said...

The leaded glass is amazing as well. I wonder if they have any idea what this place is worth? It's so beautiful! Mine's just as old and I have the same issues with regard to plumbing and upkeep. Pocket doors too. We need to visit before you find a place far away. I know you will find a place!!!!

Adelaide Dupont said...

I'm sure they would be pleased too.

I especially love the Christmas cow, and the poinsettas.

Lots of lovely memories there with each decoration. Sad ones, too, and bitter-sweet.

Looked at the Nativity scene.

Some of the decorations in my house say "Nana" to me. (She died in 1992). She had a love of Christmas.

The house I live in now is 22 years old. It was built in the 1980s.

Feel fairly ambivalent about Christmas lights, but love tinsel and ribbons. We have no animals this year (nor did we last), so no animal presents.

When I read about the church house/manse, I thought of Rainbow Valley by L M Montgomery, and how the four wild manse children (the Merediths) lived there. Unfortunately the father couldn't celebrate because he was tied in his grief for his dead wife. Probably there's more about it in Rilla of Ingleside, when Rilla writes about parties in her journal. (The book covers the years when Rilla is fifteen to nineteen, in the First World War).

Reverend Mom said...


Elsewhere, this house would be worth much more than it is here in Tiny Village. It is the only brick house in the village. I was thinking after my last post that you and Miss K should come visit us some weekend. By February we'll have a beautiful guest room for you to use.


I'm not familiar with the books you mentioned. I'll have to track them down. The "cow" is supposed to be a reindeer, and sings Grandma got run over by a Reindeer. Mom bought one for each of us. Far Away Sister wasn't pleased, because her then young son began singing the song in public, drawing horrified looks from older women. She found herself repeatedly explaining that his Grandma had given it to him....

Linda B said...

What beautiful memories and a lovely tribute. The holidays bring such mixed emotions. Bless you this Christmas season.

Adelaide Dupont said...

Grandma got run over by a reindeer is certainly a song which unites the generations, if only in shock!

It is obviously a very popular song in America. Am just enjoying a YouTube movie where the song is sung by a child called Mikaela Smith.

We've had a lot of trouble and grief with singing Christmas toys and cards over the years.

To think that Grandma got run over by a reindeer is now 30 years old! It has some traction.

Meanwhile, the tune in my head is: "Right to left, back to front, that's how the brain develops" from The Neurodevelopment Song.

Also there is The Parliament of the World's Religions.

Here are the Wiki articles about Rainbow Valley and Rilla of Ingleside.

Rainbow Valley from Wikipedia
Rilla of Ingleside from Wikipedia

FAScinated said...

Beautiful decorations, beautiful house, beautiful post. :-)