If there is one thing I do appreciate about the holidays, it’s the nostalgia that Christmas brings. It comes in many forms such as modern ads like what Apple or Tesco have done for the season. But when it comes to Christmas, I’ve always been partial to early 20th century imagery that comes in the forms of films like “It’s a Wonderful Life” or even period piece artwork to capture the Christmas spirit – something like the works of Thomas Kinkade.
Like most people, I’ve had several memorable Christmas holidays. But there’s one in particular that always resonates with me.
I was about 7 or 8 years old and we still lived in the ‘burbs of New Jersey. This Christmas was a blast! Not only did I get the 2-Foot tall Godzilla and Mazinga figures, but the day also included a trip to Radio City Music Hall. I don’t remember what it was we were seeing, maybe The Nutcracker. I remember my mother talking about how wonderful the show was, my father talking about the Rockettes and my sisters – well, they were both older than me so who knows what they were talking about – probably boys. It was a great Christmas and one that will still be talked about from time-to-time when we’re making plans on how we’re going to spend the holiday. It always starts off with, “Oh, remember that time we went to New York for Christmas?”
We chuckle, and reminisce but that’s as far as it goes because there’s nothing tangible to look back on. This was all before the days of social networks, “selfies” and photography sites. Camera phones were a fantasy of the future like Buck Rogers. So when I look back on the days of Christmas past, all I have is my memory. And it’s not what it used to be.
Maybe in a dark, dank cabinet at my mother’s house are some photos of this one particular Christmas. While I remember my parents owning a camera, I don’t remember either of them being all that into photography – definitely not like they are today.
But this is what makes saving memories so important. Making the memories is fun, but it’s just as nice to be able to look back on them, whether it is for the sake of personal nostalgia or for the opportunity to share with future generations and tell a “back in my day” story.
Christmas is a wonderful time to come together with family and friends, both old and new, and celebrate not only what was, but what also could be.
What’s your fondest Christmas memory? Share your story in the comments below.