On a lighter note, memories – new and old

New memories – Yesterday, seeing both my little girls in “The Nutcracker” (Actually I had never seen the ballet before), was a blessing to me.  Also it was a blessing that the Dance Troupe has the compassion to allow four teenagers with special needs participate in major ways as well as to see their excitement as they danced.  One girl with Down’s Syndrome had a solo dance and was just terrific.  What a wonderful way to start this season.  Having to sit quietly and watch a bunch of amateurs dance.  Lot’s of time to notice!

Old memories – I must confess, I’ve always loved multi-color lights.  I went through a white light phase, but after having our first child, I had to go back to multi-color, it’s more fun to me.  Every year our home is ablaze with colors, on the house, on the bushes, trees, etc. Not quite the Griswolds from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, but the electric meter is spinning.  Today, as I started the yearly routine, I was reminded  of my house growing up.  Every year at this time, my father would run one string of lights up the right column of the porch, about twenty feet across the top and down the left hand column on the other side of the porch. No wrapping around the four white columns, but straight up, across and down.  Not little lights, or icicles,  but the honking huge C9 twinkle lights.  Yellow, blue, green, red and some sort of pinkish color, each huge light blinking at it’s own rate.  I always loved those lights.  I would lie awake at night with the lights twinkling outside the bedroom window, thinking of what I wanted for Christmas.  I always missed those lights.
Last year, though, I found those C9 twinkling lights.  I wasn’t looking and there they were at Ace Hardware.  I couldn’t help myself, so I bought them.  I strung them on the garage, up one side, across the top and down the other.  It was to honor my father, allow me to share a memory with my wife and kids, and take me back to simpler days (at least simpler for me). 
This year I was going to get more of those lights and add them to my house, but fortunately I didn’t.  Instead, I put the lights on the garage, some garland around the front door, and a wreath on the house.  Quite a departure from previous years.  Who knows, next year I may go all out.  But for this year, I have greatly simplified (OK, the garland and wreath have multi-color lights in them, but hey you shoulda’ seen the house last year!)  Anyway, I will WAIT ’til next year to decide!  See, it’s all about waiting and watching!

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About Dr. Jeff Van Meter

Author, Speaker, Psychologist, Human Leader
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One Response to On a lighter note, memories – new and old

  1. crookedshore says:

    Thanks Jeff. Isn’t it strange how, as we get older ourselves, the things which are strong in our memories of ‘traditions’ are the things that at the time we often felt were naff. Have you heard your kids saying things to you that you said to your dad?

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