Three Muses - Tidings

Marie has asked us to share some Christmas memories.  Mine are centered about the little one-room school and the country church that were the hub of social activities in my childhood.   Tradition on Christmas Eve was to attend Nigh Chapel for the children's program, hymns, and the reading of the story of Christ's birth from the Bible.  Then, the sound of sleigh bells heralded the arrival of Santa, who always brought brown paper bags of treats for everyone.  These contained hard candies, chocolate drops, nuts, an orange and a shiny apple.  I  never questioned that these treats were from the North Pole until the year my parents were on the "treat committee" and, with friends, prepared the bags of treats at our house!    This was probably the same year I learned Santa was Johnny Cashmer, a rotund farmer with rosy cheeks who lived in the neighborhood!   Who knew?  Any Christmas shopping was likely done from the well-fingered pages of the Sears & Roebuck catalog.   We looked forward to receiving the package from my father's mother, which always contained her potato candy (a confection made from a boiled potato, powdered sugar, and peanut butter).  Christmas Day was a gathering of family.  Gifts were simple, few and well chosen, and the afternoon was usually spent playing games of all sorts.

Close your eyes.  Imagine no charge cards, no over-spending, no retail mania, no exchanges, no batteries, children who talked instead of texting, adults who visited instead of watching television, and everyone remembering what Christmas is all about .....
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