Christmas Day makeover
During the Great Depression, my family had little money to spend on Christmas. Other families began putting up the tree, trimming the house, setting decorations in the front yard and on the roof well in advance of Christmas Day. Not our family. When we children went to bed on Christmas Eve, our home looked the way it always did. No tree, not a decoration, not even a scrap of tinsel did we see as we climbed the stairs to our bedrooms.
But the next morning, our living room had been turned into a welcoming wonderland! There shone a glittering tree — not many ornaments, but each limb had been covered in absorbent cotton and each line of tinsel had been hung individually to make the tree seem overflowing with shining delights.
Under the tree were our presents. Each of my old dolls was waiting for me in a brand new dress. During the year, my mother had taken dress scraps and made new dresses, washed faces and curled doll hair.
One Christmas I received my Flossie Flirt doll. She had eyeglasses and flirted by moving her eyes from left to right. At 94, I still have this favorite doll.
My mother and father stayed up most of Christmas Eve to fill the room with Christmas spirit. I carried on the tradition with my children until they got old enough to help. But I couldn’t convince them to hang tinsel by placing each gleaming line on the tree.