As we prepare for the coming of Christmas, we asked several members of the Abilene community to share a Christmas memory that is special to them. From all of us at Abilene Scene, we hope you have a very Merry Christmas and make lots of new memories this holiday season with your family and friends.
Being in the military, our family has moved around a bit and holiday traditions tend to change a bit during those moves. The mainstay tradition for our family over the years and the moves is that we always cook Chex Mix “Trash” on Christmas Eve, attend Christmas Eve church service and always allow the kids to open one present. Since we’ve been in Abilene and intend on staying here after my time in the military is over, we’ve adopted some new ones that we have done over the last 7 years such as going to the Abilene Zoo and helping our church with Walk To Bethlehem, making a trip out to Winter Lightfest and a new one from last year is attending the Christmas concert with Aaron Watson at the Paramount Theatre which was a blast. Abilene is the perfect place to have a family and build holiday traditions.
Christmas morning, December 1966 was sheer delight as I saw my three-piece aqua play kitchen set! Countless hours were spent practicing my culinary skills by “baking” cookies in the oven and dreaming of meals I could cook. The kitchen set was tucked away in my bedroom and felt like a culinary hideaway as I pulled out store bought cookies from the oven and told my dad I made them. He was a good sport and went along with my wild imagination! Who ever thought years later, my real-life kitchen would also be aqua? It pays to play and dream!
I have a wonderful niece and two nephews that truly bring so much joy into every season. When my oldest niece was little, I decided to start a tradition of decorating a Gingerbread House with her every Christmas Eve. Since that first year, we’ve added two little brothers to our tradition. All three of their faces light up every time we start the decorating process on Christmas Eve — the room is instantly filled with little giggles and frosting smeared faces. I know they won’t be little forever, but I am thankful for the opportunity to make Christmas memories that will last a lifetime.
My first Christmas without my dad was undoubtedly a bittersweet experience. While the absence of his physical presence was deeply felt, it also allowed me to reflect on the cherished memories we had created together during past holiday seasons. The palpable void left by his absence was unmistakable, yet it afforded me a contemplative space to rekindle my most treasured recollections of our past holiday seasons.
Even in the midst of grief, I felt a sense of gratitude. This picture of my two kids while marked by my father’s absence, is also a time to celebrate the innocence and wonder that my little ones bring into our lives. For me and my wife Caroline it shows a presence serves as a reminder that, despite the void left by my father’s passing, new beginnings and the boundless love of family endure. This specific Christmas, I was immensely thankful for the joy and hope my babies bring, as they represent a continuation of life’s beautiful journey.
While my father’s absence was palpable, the celebration of the birth of Jesus served as a poignant reminder of the enduring hope, love, and redemption that Christmas brings.
The opportunity to spend times with our listeners and their families during the holidays is such a great memory for us at La Voz 93.3 FM! During our “Merry Make N Take” we work on Christmas Projects that kids can enjoy each year, things like making ornaments, or decorating their own stockings, then you throw in some pizza and some drinks and it’s one fun Christmas party! Its such a fun time for everyone!
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Suzetta and I were married in August of 1980, and we were flat-broke for our first Christmas. We managed to buy a real tree to be in the window of our Washington Blvd duplex, but seriously only had a few hand-me-down ornaments and even fewer of the dinky red tartan plaid bows we tied to ‘fill the space’. I think we made a treetop star out of foil. But we wanted to get each other a gift, and we agreed it had to be $10 or under. Tops. Max. No going over. Since then, one of the first ornaments to be placed on our family tree each year is this little metal Santa in a Zeppelin that Suzetta gave me that first year. And each year following, part of the joy in our gift-giving was the search for what we could buy, find, or make for $10. And it stayed that way for many years – that was the deal. At some point, to reflect the increase in the cost of living, we raised the limit to $20 – but only if a necessity! Some of our best, most treasured gifts are those $10 presents. Some touching, some goofy…all heartfelt.
The most magical moments of Christmas are seen through the eyes of children. Grandchildren of Philip and Cathy Ashby, Micah Ashby and Ashby Potter, enjoy the sights and sounds of Winter Lightfest.