Friday, December 9, 2016

An Old Fashioned Christmas

An Old Fashioned Christmas

Jennifer E. Miller

An old fashioned Christmas. The term generally conjures up images from Little Women. Civil War-aged women in wool petticoats and hooded cloaks, shivering in horse drawn carriages with harness bells jingling. They'd thaw near the hearth eating freshly roasted chestnuts. Homemade Christmas presents lay wrapped in brown paper secured with twine. For lucky recipients, an orange could be found in a knitted stocking on Christmas morning. Speaking of Christmas morning, would children find evidence of Santa? Since they had authentic fireplaces, would there be ashy footprints left behind by The Big Guy? How simple Christmas probably was back then. 

Flash forward about 100 years. What was a Christmas like in 1960? Homemade pumpkin and apple pies perhaps? Locally made chocolate bars and candy canes in stockings? Maybe space toys and baby dolls waited under the tree. Stuff like doll furniture and toy cars were probably still made of wood; and handmade by a family member.

But what is an old fashioned Christmas anymore anyways? It's 2016 after all. Kids want iPods and Xboxes. An old fashioned Christmas nowadays probably dates back to 1986 when children ripped opened packages to find the original Nintendo Entertainment System, complete with the games Super Mario Bros and Duck Hunt. And a plastic gun for shooting down those on-screen birds. Digital watches and cassette tapes filled stockings; we could get oranges anytime at the supermarket.

What would be your ideal old fashioned Christmas?

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