We’re on the final countdown. Just days away from a twinkle in his eye, a squinch of the nose, scarf up those cookies and up the chimney he goes.
As a young kid, I spent every Christmas Eve at my aunt Marilyn and Uncle Tom’s house where I would gorge myself on those pastel hard candy covered licorices as I tracked the jolly old elf’s progress toward our home, hoping against hope he’d find me and my sister all nestled in our single set beds. I was glued to the radio, (this was pre-NORAD ) raptly listening to the DJ’s talk of the man in the red suit fighting his way through the clouds toward the twinkling lights of my little old Utah neighborhood.
Later in my teens we moved the party to Grandma and Grandpa’s house, where everyone was greeted by Grandma’ MJ’s coveted ceramic lit Christmas tree holiding court in the foyer, her collection of Avon holiday plates nestled in evergreens and boughs artfully adorning the mantle, and where I would gather the younger cousins in front of the fire to read to the younger kids from Grandma MJ’s coveted edition of The Santa Claus Book.
As Grandma and Grandpa grew older we moved the party to Aunt Jill and Uncle Ben’s, where I spent most of my time either helping dish out Aunt Jill’s famous lasagna or arm wrestling my studly football playing boy cousins—and beating them—while reciting every word from my all-time favorite Christmas movie.