It's Christmas Eve 2005. As I sit here, turning redder and redder due to an allergic reaction to cinnamon soap (I just wanted to smell festive!), I think back to the Christmases of my childhood. Christmases as a Pfeiffer were the stuff the other kids dreamed of. Having a non-conventional childhood, some of my fondest memories are of my parents decorating the jewelry store for the upcoming holiday season. And Mom always had this Bing Crosby Christmas tape that she would play over and over again over the store speakers. I heard it day in and day out for five Christmas seasons inside that store. Needless to say, 15 years after they closed the doors of the store for the last time, I still think of Bing Crosby as the one true singer of Christmas songs. There is no one like Bing. Bing defines my holiday season.
But my absolute best memories of Christmas always involve my younger brother, Tim. We had a Christmas tradition that on Christmas Eve, he would sleep in my room with me. But we never actually slept. We spent the night talking about what Santa would bring us. We would fight sleep until the early hours of the morning. After hours of watching TV on the little grainy black and white TV in my room, and later the color TV that still only got local channels, we would finally give in to sleep. But two hours later we would wake back up. It would only be 4am so we still had time to kill. Around 5:30am, we wouldn't be able to fight it any more and we'd sneek into the living room to check out the gifts from Santa. The gifts I remember most vividly were not for me. I will never forget walking into the living room and seeing the child-sized pool table that Tim had wanted SO badly sitting in the middle of the living room. Sitting atop that green felt-covered table was Tim's other true Christmas wish that year - his very own pair of cowboy boots. I received absolutely wonderful gifts from Santa every year but those two for Tim stick in my mind more than anything. I do remember, though, getting the hot pink skateboard that I just HAD to have after seeing Back to the Future earlier in the year. I never did much with that skateboard - just sat on it and scooted up and down the sidewalk. I was scared that I was going to get hurt! But Tim's pool table and cowboy boots is one of my favorite memories!
And I remember going to my grandparents house on Christmas eve and just watching the clock until we could leave. Christmas Eve was the one night of the year when Tim and I wouldn't mind going to bed early. I remember watching out the car windows on the way home so I could see all the Christmas lights. Oh how I loved, and still love, Christmas lights! I remember Dad taking us to the tops of the Knobs above New Albany so we could see all the lights in the ritzy neighborhoods and then look down upon New Albany and across the river to Louisville. I think those trips are what instilled in me my love of city lights at night.
I remember getting up on Christmas morning and seeing soot on the fireplace hearth from where Santa had tracked it in!!! That was so exciting!!!
Christmas 2005 is the first Christmas Eve that I have ever NOT been at home with Mom, Dad, and Tim. Instead, I am in my own home with my husband, Tim, and our dog. Tomorrow we will venture home to spend Christmas with the family. I hope that with Christmases to come, Tim and I will have children to start traditions with. My absolute goal is to make sure my children have those very same feelings at Christmas as I did as a child. Tim (brother, not husband) and I had such wonderful Christmases...thanks to wonderful parents. I hope Tim (husband, not brother) and I can be as good as they are.