Tuesday, December 9, 2014

ACCM - Christmas Traditions

We had a few traditions when I was growing up. We had a pretty barberry candle in a glass container that had a white plastic flower attached to the lid. The smell was divine! Burning a bayberry candle is supposed to bring luck/good fortune. I don't know that it ever did, but the candle only came out at Christmastime. My sisters and I used to take the glass lid off and breathe in the fragrance whenever we got the chance. When we were really little we'd be scolded for doing it too often...afraid that little hands would break the lid. I have bayberry candles in my home, but they are out all year long. There are fewer and fewer large candle producing companies that make bayberry scented candles and even fewer that actually use the bayberry plant when making them. My kids love the fragrance too and hopefully will have bayberry candles in their homes as adults.

We had a ceramic yule log that came out at Christmas as well. It had taper candles in it and was covered in wax drippings from years of use. It would usually be placed on our dining room table with the Christmas cookies in tins. Occasionally it would sit on the mantel above our fake fireplace or the flat-top of the dining room radiator. A few years back I found a replica of this yule log on eBay. It wasn't painted which was fine by me. That meant I got to do the colors I wanted. I ordered one and got to painting. I bring it out each year. I don't think it means much to my children, but every time I see it I smile. Good memories.

Even during the hardest times in my childhood Christmas was a time of happiness. The replica is a little smaller than the original (at least by my reckoning), but it was a piece of my childhood I never expected to be able to share.

One last tradition I'd like to share is one that my husband and I started a year or so after having our first child. After we put our stockings by the fireplace my husband would read 'Twas the Night Before Christmas to our boys. They'd sit on his lap (next to him now that they're bigger) and listen to him read it. It was the last thing done before giving kisses and heading off to bed.