Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas Stockings....

When my kids were small they always looked forward to their Christmas stockings. I didn't put the usual oranges and candies in kids both loved olives (!) so each stocking always had a jar of olives in the toe!

They got crayons or markers, fun little toys, and things that were personal for them. Many times their gifts for the stockings cost more than some of their other gifts.

On Christmas morning they could get their stocking and open all those gifts inside whenever they got up. They had to wait to open their other gifts because my mom had to come over, and after I was divorced their dad always came over for Christmas morning, too. So they usually got up early and then had to wait to open their gifts. The stockings were to keep them busy and happy until everyone arrived.

One year, when Molly was just a baby and her brother (Buck) was about 5 years old, their dad was working a rotating shift and it just so happened that he had to work the night shift on Christmas Eve. This meant he wouldn't get home until about 8:00 AM on Christmas morning!

We lived in an odd little house that had been added on to, so some of the rooms were in an odd order. To get from my son's room to the living room you had to pass through the master bedroom. So on that particular Christmas morning, I knew my son would wake up long before his dad could get home. I didn't want Buck to see his presents until his dad was there to share in the fun. Santa had brought Buck one of those springy horses that were so popular back in the 60's....and it was sitting right there under the tree. (Photo below is not mine. Just looks like the horse he got.)

When I heard Buck get up, I told him I didn't think Santa had made it around to all the houses yet and that maybe we should just wait in my bedroom until Santa had a chance to do his work. I told Buck I would sneak a quick peek to see what was going on but that he should stay in my bed and wait for me.

I pretended to peek out into the living room and then I said I thought Santa had gone back to his sleigh to get some more presents but he had already filled the stocking so I would slip out real quick and grab it and bring it back to the bed.

Buck was thrilled to have the stocking and we played with all his little toys right there in my bed until we heard his dad come home. Of course, by that time Santa had finished his work and we were able to venture out to the living room and discover the horse.

I always remember that particular Christmas because not too many little 5 year olds would have waited patiently with only their stocking to keep them happy. But Buck did that year.


  1. Anonymous8:40 AM

    This is a beautiful Christmas story, Janet. Thank you so much for sharing it with us. It left me feeling all warm inside. That's a good thing because we are having a blizzard right now!

  2. Thanks, sombra! Now stay inside where it's warm, build a fire, get out the hot chocolate and enjoy!!

  3. What a perfectly charming and lovely memory. It is moments like that where our hearts are etched in pure joy.
    Thank you for sharing it.

  4. Nice story, Janet. My kids were the same, got their stockings but had to wait until after breakfast to open presents, otherwise they were too excited to eat. My mom made me do the same. But when my kids got a little older, we wised up and tore into our presents with great abandon and had wonderful fun. One of my twins loved olives too, and she always got a jar of them in her stocking as well. Small world. Please do make a stick tree, so I won't feel all alone! :)

  5. Hi Janet-I followed the German custom of opening one thing Christmas Eve. Since James was a member of the Lego Maniacs we always made sure he opened something very complicated that would make him concentrate and forget his Mom & Dad were still asleep.(devilish, no?)He also got mini Lego stuff for the stocking in the morning. More sleep for us and fun for him. I posted a pic of the soldier-artist for you...enjoy

  6. Oh, Janet,

    I have tears clouding my vision and a big smile on my lips, this is so precious. What a great memory!

  7. This is a beautiful Story Janet, what a dear boy he was. Delayed gratification....we need more of that today!

    Hugs Sherrie

  8. That sweet patient little boy, grew into that big strong self sufficient man, that he is today.
    A lovely memory Janet.

  9. Janet
    Wow, what a good boy you have there. Amazing! Awesome for you to have this memory. Stockings are one of the best part of Christmas. It would be nice if everyone had a stocking to open like that on Christmas morning, wouldn't it?

  10. What a beautiful story!! What a great Mum to ignore tradition and put olives in!

  11. Cool stockings and I love the idea of a jar of olives in the toe. :-)

    (I tried several times to comment yesterday and could NOT do it...sigh. Stoooopid Blogger.)

  12. Anonymous11:21 PM

    What a lovely story, you had a similar way of doing things to us, stockings were early (very early!!)morning things and everyone piled onto our bed and opened their stockings together. The main presents under the tree had to wait until after breakfast when the turkey was in the oven, the beds made and the dishes done. Then the rest of the morning was spent opening the gifts one at a time - lots of wonderful memories there. Rowan

  13. What a gorgeous Christmas story, Janet, and what a very well-behaved boy! I can't imagine getting my son to wait to open his presents at that age! Thank you for sharing that story with us, and for your comments on my blog lately. So very much appreciated. Hope this week brings you even more lovely surprises and plenty of Joy :)
    Suze x

  14. I love this..Sharing your stories and Christmas memories.. I can't think of a better way to ease a soul into the Season of blessings and light..
    thankyou for sharing Ms Janet :)
    Peace, Kai xx

  15. cute story, I see you are also enjoying stolling around memory lane!


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