Tag Archives: Christmas

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: Cookies

This was originally posted on 8 December 2009, for the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories.

Today, Genea Bloggers asks the following questions on the Advent Calender of Christmas Memories:

Did your family or ancestors make Christmas Cookies? How did you help? Did you have a favorite cookie?

Did we ever! I love Christmas cookies. My maternal Grandma, Ida, used to bake a few different types of cookies.

  • Spritz cookies are  small sugar cookie that is put through a cookie press and topped with candy sprinkles! These are my favorite.
  • Ice box Cookies are a small cookie as well, I believe they are a brown sugar base with some chopped walnuts in them. The dough is rolled up in wax paper and frozen. When you are ready for cookies, take them out of the freezer, unroll, cut and bake. Yummy!

After Grandma passed away the cookie making was turned over to my Aunt Betty. I would spend Thanksgiving weekend with her. We would decorate the house and start the cookie making. She also made the Spritz and Ice box cookies, but also made many more.

  • Laurie’s cookies are made with graham crackers, walnuts and brown sugar
  • Sugar cookies with cookie cutters that were then frosted
  • Rice Krispie treats were turned into little wreaths with Red Hots as the holly
  • FUDGE (best part of the holidays), there were many, many tins of fudge

My favorites to bake are the Spritz cookies and then Peanut Butter Blossom’s which have the Hershey Kiss center.


Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: Holiday Parties

This was originally post on 7 December 2009 for the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories.

Today, Genea Blogger asks the following questions on the Advent Calender of Christmas Memories:

Did your family throw a holiday party each year? Do you remember attending any holiday parties?

Growing up we never attended any type of family party. The only affair, was the holiday itself.

As an adult, I worked for one company that always held wonderful holiday parties for the family. I truly enjoyed dressing all the kids up and showing them off for the night. There was always wonderful food, beautiful ice sculptures, small gifts for the kids and a special visit with that special man, Santa Clause!

As I have taken time to write each day for the Advent Calender, I feel that my family did not spend any time on the extra fun stuff. I hope my children will remember the times we went to the work holiday parties, because I loved taking them to it.

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: Dear Santa

This post was originally written for Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories and posted on 6 December 2009.

Today, Genea Blogger asks the following questions on the Advent Calender of Christmas Memories:

Did you ever send a letter to Santa? Did you ever visit Santa and “make a list?” Do you still believe in Santa Claus?

I remember writing letters to Santa when I was a child. Did they ever get mailed? I doubt it. As for making a list, we absolutely made them yearly and hoped that we were good enough to get everything we asked for.

As for believing in Santa, of course I do! If you do not believe, you do not get any gifts.

I will say that while we are on the subject of Santa, I think it is great that he finally writes letters back to the kids that write to him. About 9-10 years ago, my three kids all wrote their letters to Santa and each one got a reply (postmarked from the North Pole)! How excited they were to get those letters.

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: Outdoor Decorations

This was originally post on 5 December 2009 for the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories.

In today’s Genea Bloggers Advent Calender of Christmas Memories our theme is Outdoor Decorations.

Did people in your neighborhood decorate with lights? Did some people really go “all out” when decorating? Any stories involving your ancestors and decorations?

Growing up in a big city, their were many neighborhoods to go and see the outdoor decorations. As for my family, we usually limited it to lights on the bushes and maybe the windows. Nothing to extraordinary or strenuous.

We preferred to get in the car, turn on some Christmas music and drive through the neighborhoods who really decorated their homes. My favorite neighborhood, is Lincolnwood, IL. They usually will get featured on the evening news. There are blocks upon blocks of lights, Santa’s (with and without a sleigh), nativaties and trees. One house in particular puts up 3 – 4 trees and makes it look like it is all one tree. The last tree is on the roof off the house and it looks like the tree grew through all the floors and out the roof! How I love driving through this neighborhood during the holidays!

Speaking of outdoor decorations, reminds me of the Christmas of 1994. My son was about 1.5 years. He was still a quiet little boy at this point. He talked, but never too many words at once. We were driving home from my parents, taking a short cut through the side streets. He was in the back seat of the car, in his baby seat, looking out the window. All of a sudden, he was so excited, he kept saying “Mama see! Mama see!” That was his first attempt at conversation. I will never forget how cute he was at that moment.

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: Christmas Cards

This was originally posted on 4 December 2009 for the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories.

Today’s advent calendar at Genea Bloggers asks:

Did your family send cards? Did your family display the ones they received? Do you still send Christmas cards? Do you have any cards from your ancestors?

Growing up, I do not believe we always sent Christmas cards. As a kid, I always liked getting them. When I was a teen ager, we lived in a big house that had two sets of French doors and we would hang them from the door frame, entering into the dining room,  with a string and clip. The string would make two loops across the top of the frame and then the string would hang down both sides of the doorway.

As I became an adult and had children I would send cards out all the time, making sure to add the cutest pictures of the children for everyone to see. In the most recent years I have not sent out any cards and I always buy them to send. I have been working in retail management the past 7 years and there is never enough time to really enjoy the holiday. The cards were the easiest item to drop off of my to do list.

I still display the cards we receive, we tape them to the doors in our hallway. The hallway is small, but we must pass trough it to go anywhere in the house. The cards bring a little cheer to this small section of our home.

I do have cards from family members. I usually keep the ones that are either special or have a family photo on them. I am sure I might have a card or two from a direct ancestor, but not too many.

All I Want for Christmas…

Christmas is just a week away and I have not taken the time to let Santa know what I want for Christmas. I hope that Genea Santa will still be able make at least one of my Christmas dreams come true.

Dear Genea Santa,

Though it has been a long year, and I have been good all year. I only have a few things that I would like for Christmas this year. Most of these I would normally be able to get for myself, but I am not making enough money to get the things I would like this year.

What I would like the most is:

  • A renewed subscription to Ancestry.com
  • Renewed membership to the NEGS
  • Renewed membership to NGS
  • V/MC Gift cards to be used NIGS classes
  • A trip to any genealogy conference or jamboree

Most of all, I would like my brother to submit to a DNA test to aid in my research.



Blog Caroling

O little town of Bethlehem, 
How still we see thee lie!
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep 
The silent stars go by; 
Yet in thy dark streets shineth 
The everlasting Light;
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight. 

For Christ is born of Mary,
And gathered all above,
While mortals sleep, the angels keep
Their watch of wondering love. 
O morning stars, together 
Proclaim the holy birth!
And praises sing to God the King,
And peace to men on earth. 

How silently, how silently,
The wondrous gift is given!
So God imparts to human hearts
The blessings of his heaven.
No ear may hear his coming,
But in this world of sin,
Where meek souls will receive him, still
The dear Christ enters in. 

Where children pure and happy
Pray to the blessed Child,
Where misery cries out to thee,
Son of the mother mild;
Where charity stands watching
And faith holds wide the door,
The dark night wakes, the glory breaks,
And Christmas comes once more. 

O holy Child of Bethlehem! 
Descend to us, we pray;
Cast out our sin and enter in,
Be born in us today.
We hear the Christmas angels
The great glad tidings tell;
O come to us, abide with us,
Our Lord Emmanuel!

Written by Father Phillip Brooks, he was inspired by his visit to Bethlehem in 1865. Music was composed by Lewis Redner, he was the organist in Father Brooks church.

Information and lyrics from World of Christmas.

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