COZY HOLIDAY MEMORY SNAPSHOTS

This just popped into my head unbidden. Please share yours!
  1. Helping my mom wrap gifts in the basement at the big folding table as a kid. I am picking out a tag for each present that matches the paper. It smells like the space heater and we're listening to The Carpenters' Christmas tape.
  2. Scanning the night sky for santas sleigh from the back of our station wagon. We lay on that bed of sleeping bags in the "way back" every Christmas Eve for the long car to our cousin's house. My sister and I whispering and giggling instead of sleeping.
    Suggested by   @ameliaville
  3. My family used to drive to Ohio every Christmas. The year Whitney Houston's version of I Will Always Love You was released I remember pulling into my Nana's driveway late at night and my whole family just sat in the car and listened to the song finish while we all looked at her beautiful Christmas light and snow covered house.
    Suggested by   @amieshmamie
  4. Setting out cookies, milk, and carrots for Santa and the reindeer. I was amazed Christmas morning when there were only crumbs left. Blew me mind every year.
    Suggested by   @k8zinker
  5. Being at my grandma's on Christmas Eve and she would always turn on the late local news before we drove home to show us the news report about Santa sightings. We would change into pjs before we left and sleep in the car on the way home. My dad also always came home with us even though my parents were divorced.
    Suggested by   @kelrie
  6. Our family would lie on the LR floor (in front of the fireplace natch) Christmas Eve and listen to Menotti's "Ahmal and the Night Visitors" on vinyl. My brother and I would concoct some snack involving ritz crackers for everyone.
    I have the same recording on CD and listened in my car yesterday. It made me cry listening to a mother's love for her son in a way that I never heard as a child.
    Suggested by   @pathb
  7. Christmas Eve party with the Hopes
    My dad's side of the family was huge. 5 kids + spouses and 15 grandkids and assorted extended family members. We'd gather at my grandparents' and have finger foods and punch, desserts, and goodies. The cousins would exchange gifts then scatter to play or just hang out. Then we'd all go outside and shoot fireworks!
    Suggested by   @jhope71
  8. Bundled up, driving around town on Christmas Eve, searching out the houses with the best lights, the radio tuned to a station playing only Christmas tunes, heater blasting, windows fogging up, eating decorated sugar cookies cut into Santa star shapes.
    A childhood memory so strong and cozy we continued the tradition with our own kids for 20 years....
    Suggested by   @andersun
  9. On Christmas Eve we would get all bundled in our pjs and sit on the couch and my dad would read Santa's rules.
    Basically these were meant to ensure we didn't come upstairs until morning and see my mom frantically sewing gifts and my dad wrapping for all he's worth, but the rules were so funny it was my favorite part. He'd make up Elf names and reindeer ailments. One time Dancer had a back injury from teaching Santa to polka and was self conscious about his brace so we couldn't come upstairs or we'd embarrass him.
    Suggested by   @jennifergster
  10. We still do my favorite memory - we gather at my grandparents' house on Christmas Eve for dinner and gifts, which are opened youngest to oldest. After gifts, my aunt opens trays of her homemade cookies, and we all sit around talking and laughing until my grandma throws us out so she can go to midnight mass.
    Suggested by   @DG
  11. One year my dad got the Christmas ornaments out of the garage and we kept hearing a squeaking sound. We thought there was a mouse in the box of ornaments. Turns out it was just dad's squeaky boots. Do mice even squeak?
    Suggested by   @jaidub