I'll Be Home for Christmas... such a simple phrase. What is it it that draws us home for the season? Is it the sights and sounds of Christmas? Not for everyone, but for me it happened. I really did go home for Christmas!
Our Christmas season was unusually busy. Fall is always busy with hunting for Rigby and Homecoming festivities for me as the high school student govt. adviser; However, throw in Maleck's freshmen football season (Stockton helped coach), Emma's mission call, the announcement of Seleck and Leydi's baby, and Stockton and Amanda's engagement and it was BUSY.
November was filled wonderful wedding excitement and the "picture perfect" wedding on November 18th. December was filled with the busy hustle and bustle of the season plus the long awaited opening of our restaurant Second East. So many blessings to count. However, it was difficult to find time to enjoy the season. But I found I few moments, and they were perfect.
The restaurant takes it name from the street on which my parents raised the seven of us, 200 East. The Friday before Christmas, I went home- home to Second East, and it was the perfect Christmas gift.
I wandered past the post office, up main street, by the old rock church and down the 2nd East. I recalled so many memories on my wander. It felt so good to be home. I recalled names of neighbors, adventures- good and bad.
The mural is a depiction of the painting my grandfather, Max Dickson Weaver did of the old oak tree which once stood at the bottom of 2nd East.
The railroad industry brought the birth of tourism in Cedar City. Main street breathed life into our small town in its early days. Today it charms its visitors and warms the hearts of its residents.
The old rock church is where mom and dad introduced us to God. The nine of us sat on one pew. My faith grew in this cherished community heirloom.
The Lunt home is one of my favorites. It is located on 100 West and was a landmark on my many trips to Cowley Drug. I love its architecture.
Henry and Blanche Dotson lived in this home while I was growing up. It one of the few homes on 2nd each which remains well maintained. Visiting the Dotsons, was a treat. We were allowed to sit in their hammock while we enjoyed pudding pops. They were so good to us.
Lois McConnell lived in this home. She taught me that I must be precise in my work. Cleaning her home, caring for her lawn, and weeding her garden were just a few chores with which I was tasked. We called her "Grandma McConnell." She joined most Christmas morning for gift opening and treated us to a fine meal at least twice a year. We loved her dearly.
Our home on the left was separated from the Slack home on the left by this infamous alley. So many stories transpired here. Ice skating, cops and robbers, "spy games," fort building in the lilac trees, and "strange" renters of the apartment which once stood behind our home- Homicide Chuck , Clarence Haight and Sheeba the three legged dog.
This little house holds my heart.
This was once the home of Syd and Alta Porter. It was this home which I looked out through my front window. Syd owned a mechanic shop in his early years and Alta made the best brownies around. We enjoyed many summer nights playing "kick the can" with their grand kids here.
The street has changed, but the memories remain. I am so grateful Christmas gave me the opportunity to go home again!
The first day following Thanksgiving gave baby sister, Heather, and I the permission to break out mom's record and enjoy the songs of Christmas. This year I was blessed to borrow an old record player and listen to this beloved record of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. I wept when I heard the crackle of the vinyl record-it was my childhood.
On Christmas Eve Day, it was tradition that mom made homemade donuts and that we delivered them. As the years wore on, this task was left to Heather and I as we were the last to leave the house. I shed a few tears when on December 23rd I came home from the grocery store to these homemade donuts made by my sister in law Sofia- a few more tears fell.
On Christmas Eve, we attended church as a family, and then I busily wrapped Santa gifts and watched my dad's favorite Christmas movie, It's a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart. I think this was the first time I watched the movie from start to finish. I think I was finally mature enough to fully appreciate this film. What a man George Bailey was, and my dad he is George Bailey's reincarnate. And my mom... she is definitely his Mary.
Old Christmas records, a favorite Christmas movie, delicious homemade donuts, and a stroll down Second East made my Christmas. It wasn't the gifts given or received this season which made the day special- it was the sights, sounds, and flavors of the season. For this I will always be grateful!Merry Christmas 2023