Friday, November 22, 2013

Christmas 102.1!

The radio station I listen to has started playing Christmas music around the clock.  They play it continuously until around New Year’s Eve.  I think it’s wonderful.  It puts me in the holiday mood and makes me happy.

There are certain songs that I hear that can transport me back to another time and place.  When I was growing up, we lived in a modest three bedroom, one bathroom ranch that sat on a slab. We weren’t rich by any stretch of the imagination and my mom would make a lot of things for me and my sister.  She sewed and crocheted so we could always expect some new doll clothes or a blanket of some sort.   

Our Christmas decorations were stored up in the attic.  We had one of those staircases that folded and went into the ceiling.  When mom pulled on the string and the stairs came down, she always sent me up to get them because I was the smallest.  I had to be careful where I stepped because one wrong move and my leg would go through the floor and end up in a room down below.  There were always three boxes; two boxes of decorations and one box that stored the tree.

We had an artificial tree and the stems of each branch were painted a different color.  So we sorted them into piles.  As time wore on, the paint started to fade and chip away so it got pretty difficult to tell the difference between the colors but we managed.  The limbs were placed in the “trunk” of the tree in order.  The blue went on the bottom as those were the biggest branches followed by red, yellow and so on.  You get the picture.  When we finished we stood back in awe.  We created a tree!! 

The strands of lights were old and looking back on it, a definite fire hazard but we didn’t know any better.   We had a strand of bubble lights and back then, they were a novelty.  Our tree sat in front of the window and looked the same every year with lots of garland and icicles but to us, it was beautiful.      

When we decorated the tree, my mom always played Christmas music.  We had a record player and she played Gene Autry - Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.  I still remember what the cover of the album looked like.  It was white and Gene Autry was standing there in a cowboy outfit and Santa, sitting on his sleigh with all the reindeers, was flying around him.  I loved hearing the sound of that album come out of its sleeve because that meant Christmas was coming and I loved Christmas. 

I still love Christmas to this day.  It just seems like people are a little bit nicer and the generosity of total strangers is overwhelming.  It just makes you want to do something to help someone – usually someone you don’t even know.

Today my tastes have changed and my favorite Christmas song is Little Drummer Boy.  There is just something about that “rum pum pum pum” that gets my heart beating and helps me visualize the scene of the baby Jesus in the manager. 

But a really beautiful Christmas song is Silent Night sung by Sinead O’Connor.  I am not a huge Sinead O’Connor fan but the way she sings this song completely blows me away.  I heard it for the first time at the end of the movie Fred Clause.  Take a listen. 

So thanks Jen and Tim and the entire 102.1 team for helping bring back wonderful memories.  You rock!

Hope your day is cheery and bright!

R. K. Avery