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Twelve Days of Christmas: Twelfth Day

One Christmas I decided that I needed to really get into the spirit and play Santa. I cobbled together the best costume possible with the meager resources at hand. Then I made my sisters play [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Eleventh Day

As a child, we ate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day feasts in our dining room. Mom loved to keep the tradition alive of serving a flaming fruit cake on Christmas Eve. I personally did not like the [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Tenth Day

Two special treats appeared at Christmastime when I was a child. One was clementines.  Today the smell of that little citrus gem immediately takes me back to the one that was always in the toe of [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Ninth Day

My parents bought our home in Ames, New York in 1951. A year later, I arrived and joined my sister. By 1955, we were a family of six. I have called it my home ever since. At Christmastime my [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Eighth Day

My mother’s brother and his family lived in Germany. Every Christmas we waited for a big wooden crate to arrive from Europe packed with beautiful gifts and German treats. One year, he sent [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Seventh Day

I purchased our Christmas Pickle in the late 80’s and with it added a pickle hunt  to my family’s traditions. On Christmas Eve, I hid the pickle deep within the multitude of ornaments [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Sixth Day

My mother and Nana were great bakers. I still use the Betty Crocker spritz cookie recipe for my Christmas butter cookies. One year Nana made Christmas pinafores for the four of us. She made them [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Fifth Day

Mom would select a Saturday afternoon in early November for an appointment with  Canajoharie’s photographer,  Maurice LeBel. He arrived with his tripod, fancy camera, flood lights on poles, [...]

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A Special Christmas Gift

Christmas gifts come in all shapes and sizes. Some have ribbons and some have bows. I wrote this story in 2012 about one of the best gifts I ever received. My story appeared in three holiday [...]

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Twelve Days of Christmas: Fourth Day

Candles are perfect for the dark days of December. Their warm glow softens the harsh shadows of winter. Throughout my childhood in Ames, my family dined by candle light in the dining room. At an [...]