When the holiday season hits, I get a little sentimental.
Do you do this, too?
I think about all the magical things I remember from holidays as a kid. Gifts under the tree on Christmas morning. Family dinners. Even the one year when we drove to Florida on Christmas Day. My brother and I watched movies on a tiny little TV/VCR that my dad hooked up between the front bucket seats. And there was nothing … and I mean, nothing … open on the way. No gas. No food.
My parents were probably thrilled to death when the found a gas station open, where we could eat Lunchables and fill up the minivan tank.
Another favorite memory from my childhood was helping my mom decorate the house. There were garlands and flocked trees and so many lights. (My dad also took his job to decorate the outside of the house very seriously. There was a giant nativity scene in the yard and a massive star lit on the roof.)
Oh, and the beautiful Department 56 Village. My mom would let me help unpack all the buildings and display them on top of her piano. After the homes, churches and businesses, we would add in a skating rink and figurines, vehicles and lights.
Then, we would cover everything with snow.
It sparkled. I’ve always loved that village.
More recently, I would help my mom set up her village in Arizona. But a few years ago, my parents gave me the village pieces to display in my own home.
I was giddy to open the boxes this year.
I set everything up in our kitchen open shelves, carefully placing the houses, churches and a big red barn. I like to use boxes for height and variation. Then, I covered everything with fabric “snow.”
I ran all the cords to the outlet that is controlled by one switch. This makes it much easier to turn it on and off and really enjoy it throughout the holiday season.
And I even added a few pieces we had already collected – including Menards. Because in the Woodward household, a hardware store is a must for any village.
There’s something special about having pieces in my home that I remember from childhood. And I can only hope that someday Henry has magical Christmas memories, too.
After all, that’s what this time of year is all about. Not about a perfect home or the fanciest gifts. I think it’s about magic and memories.
What magical holiday memories do you have from your childhood?
And if you like it, put a pin on it.