Christmas in SF

Christmas’ in SF were grand.

No snow – often a bikeride or a walk to a nearby park to throw the frisbee – just grand.

My mother and I would get a 12′ tree for the living room. This tall tree was bedecked with more ornaments than it had needles. She would have me decorate the tree. I would tastefully decorate it. When she came to view it, “more decorations – I found more boxes.”

Finally the tree was bedazzled with lights, shiny globes, and the tree skirt – a quilt made by ancestors of old – held the floor from capturing the needles.

Soups, cabbage rolls, steak and potatoes were our winter fare. Friends would come over or we would go to their house for Christmas dinner.

Often we would travel the miles to Seattle where we feasted with my dad’s family for my mother’s was long gone. Playing piano, gin rummy, bridge, and listening to Lawrence Welk shows created the ambiance for that sphere of family. A freshly caught rabbit would complement the instant mashed potatoes, and the salads my grandmother prepared – a lime green salad and the cranberry salad.

Christmas for me meant that I could sit under the tree and change the bulbs, reveling in the magic of colorful ornaments that showed a reflected elfin face.

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