My family took a bunch of slides when I was growing up.
If we were taking pictures, we were developing them as slides.
That was the way to do it. We could always make a print later if we wanted to…it was harder to make a slide out of a print, I guess.
So, somewhere, there are a bunch of “carousels” of slides with all these memories buried on their surfaces.
I guess that it would be like rubbing Aladdin’s lamp to fire up the old projector and watch all those old pictures…or look at all those old pictures? I guess you don’t “watch” a slide.
It’s a slow day if you can “watch” a slide.
Anyway…I’m thinking about this one picture that I remember.
I have my little back to the camera. I’m little.
I’m wading through wrapping paper that looks like it’s just about up to my thighs.
My mother is sitting in a high-backed chair, holding a flat box and smiling…my sister is bent down looking at something on the floor in the corner of the image.
I guess that my father is taking the picture. He isn’t in it.
I don’t know why that image comes to mind.
We have a lot of pictures somewhere of my childhood. We have a lot of pictures of my young parents.
I’m thinking about that particular image this morning.
Maybe I remember it as being peaceful….happy.
It looks like it was wonderful.
But I don’t think of it as being “my best Christmas”.
When we were first living in our “gutted house”…when it was just rafters and tin, no insulation in some parts of the structure, “rough as a cob”….I went up into the woods and cut a “Charley Brown” tree to put up in the loft.
That was a simple Christmas that year. We didn’t have any money.
It was a great Christmas.
It still wasn’t my “best” Christmas.
I am going to go downstairs and make cinnamon rolls later this morning.
Jenny made the bread dough last night….so I’ll roll it out and layer the brown sugar, melted butter, raisins, and cinnamon on the dough…roll it up and cut it with a piece of string…and then lay them in the pan (on the melted butter and brown sugar that I heated on the stove until it was kind of caramelized and then poured in the bottom of the big pan) . Then I’ll cook them until they “thump” when I tap the top of the browned rolls.
Fresh cinnamon rolls are pretty amazing. We can do some damage to a giant tray of rolls pretty quickly.
But it doesn’t mean that this is my best Christmas ever, either.
It may be my best Christmas ever…I can’t tell right now.
But I doubt it.
My “best Christmas ever” is a collection of all the memories I have of family and friends through the years.
It’s a pastiche of pleasure…a lexicon of love…shoot…what are some other words that do that thing with the letters? I can’t think of other ones…but you get the idea.
Good memories are my gift to myself.
This is my Best Christmas NOW.
Let’s throw it into that deep pool of good memories when I’m done with Christmas this year and…start getting ready for the next one.
It’s going to be part of my “Best Christmas Ever”… soon.