Sunday, December 18, 2005

Looking Both Ways

Sunday mornings one of the local radio stations plays songs from their Country Classic Collection. This morning I listened to Charlie Rich, Conway Twitty, and Charlie Pride sing songs that took me back to my childhood. My mom loved (still does) listening to these guys.

I get pretty homesick this time of year. Phoning home on Christmas day and hearing the sounds of family in the background makes me teary inside. I just want to be home with my parents and siblings. The six hundred miles between us seems to stretch forever at Christmas.

Tonight our only daughter comes home for the holidays. On Friday our oldest son joins us and while our youngest son is still living at home, he is counting the days until he turns 18 (before the end of the month!). We haven't been real big on Christmas traditions. My husband came from a tradition that treated Christmas just about like any other day of the year except for going to church that day, no matter what day of the week it was(isn't that a hot topic this year?!) They were very poor and presents were few. Typical Christmas decorations were not part of his culture or religion. No Christmas tree, no lights on the house, no Santa Claus, no Christmas carols on a radio. The one thing we have carried over from his childhood is the making of Peppernuts. This morning I have the dough rolled out in logs, chilled and ready to bake so that when only daughter walks in the door tonight that is the smell that greets her. From my side of the family the tradition that continues is the hanging of Norwegian flags on the Christmas tree. These flags come in a package of two strings of about 15 tiny flags each and cost only $2. The Christmas that my older sister sent me a package of them I cried.

There was something special this morning listening to my mom's favourite singers on the radio while I was preparing peppernuts for my daughter's homecoming. With a finger on each generation it was as if I was looking backwards and forewards at the same time.

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