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WHEN I WAS A CHILD, WE ALWAYS CELEBRATED CHRISTMAS ON THE EVENING OF DECEMBER 24……

 WE WOULD GET INTO THE FAMILY CAR AND WAIT FOR MY DAD TO PUT THE PRESENTS UNDER THE TREE…..

AS SOON AS HE GOT INTO THE CAR, WE WOULD HEAD STRAIGHT TO CHURCH FOR THE CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE….

 IN THOSE DAYS….. THE CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE WAS WHEN  ALL THE CHILDREN PERFORMED FOR THE CHRISTMAS PLAY……

 AS WE LEFT THE CHURCH, EACH CHILD WOULD GET A BROWN PAPER BAG WITH A “JAP ORANGE”…… A FEW MIXED NUTS…. AND A CANDY CANE……

 THE DRIVE HOME FROM CHURCH ALWAYS SEEMED TO TAKE FOREVER……. BOTH MY SISTER BONNIE AND I KNEW THE ROUTINE……

 HAVE A FEW HOME MADE SNACKS…… OPEN UP THE PRESENTS AND THEN SIT DOWN TO ENJOY A CHRISTMAS EVE DINNER…… COMPLETE WITH GERMAN FARMER SAUSAGE…….  GERMAN PAN FRIED POTATOES…… HUGE HOME MADE CABBAGE ROLLS AND PEROGIES LOADED DOWN WITH BACON, ONIONS, AND HEAPS OF SOUR CREAM……

 MY PARENTS NEVER TALKED ABOUT SANTA CLAUS OTHER THAN TO SAY IT WAS A SILLY MADE UP STORY FOR PEOPLE WHO DIDN’T KNOW JESUS……

 IN SAYING THAT…. WE ALSO HUNG UP A STOCKING FOR SOMETHING TO OPEN ON CHRISTMAS MORNING JUST BEFORE CHURCH…….. AFTER CHRISTMAS MORNING CHURCH, OUR HOME SEEMED TO BE FULL OF FRIENDS AND NEIGHBOURS…..

I GUESS IT WAS OPEN HOUSE…… BUT IT WAS NEVER CALLED THAT……

OH FOR THE MEMORIES…….

DENISA AND I HAVE CARRIED ON THE TRADITION THROUGHOUT OUR 39 YEARS TOGETHER……

IT’S -18C AND CLEAR…… YOU KNOW WHERE THE LONG JOHNS ARE……