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By Katie Bourg
Senior Daze 

Christmases come and go, but the memories remain


I seem to suffer from a lack of incentive to get ready for Santa Claus these days. My children have all grown up. The grandchildren have done the same. And my great-grandchildren are busy with their own lives. Everyone is flying off to far away places. How can you decorate a decent tree when you are in midair? And what condo could ever equal grandma’s place? I don’t have any interest in flying over the meadow and thru the woods. I’ve also given up making the best dressing. Cranberry sauce in a can is fine with me, if I even remember to put in on a list.

Years ago, I felt obligated to take my children for pictures with Santa. That had remained important even after my second daughter tried to pull his beard off, and frightened the poor man to death. I laid my daughter’s behavior to fear due to the frantic festivities surrounding us at the time.

I was a little shocked when that same daughter lured me into a building one day recently, and before I realized what she had in mind shouted in a loud voice, “I want a picture of my Mom with Santa Claus!” Everybody but me appeared to like the idea, and I was outnumbered. He insisted I sit on his knee, which I feared would collapse. It didn’t and he was very nice about everything. He wasn’t at the North Pole, even if it felt that way. He was down on Eighth Street, just west of State, in the Slumberease Mattress Factory building. He even offered me a candy cane.

If you are looking for a good-looking Santa and quiet pleasant surroundings, he’s there and waiting. In Santa’s Den. He’s even on the internet at

And he has very strong knees.

In the middle of another happy season we lost another good citizen of the world. Seems like with every joy there has to be a cloud. Mandela was a force for good in a sad world. He has earned his peace. And the world is better off for his having been with us. Our world has problems, but we’ve also made progress toward the real meaning of Christmas.

Peace on Earth won’t ever be a complete accomplishment until everyone has as much chance to reach their dreams as the next fellow. We aren’t there yet. But we are a lot closer than we were in my youth, and Mandela was a key player in the game of getting there. He’s earned his place in history.

Went to a party this week to see the fancywork of others. Saw several things I was interested in. Came home to think about it. My friend Karen Lee is one of many making beautiful cards that are very different. Her work is remarkable. I love seeing others’ craftwork. I’ve slowed up, and don’t do much anymore. But I never get tired of seeing new ideas. And the cookies were good too.

I haven’t done much decorating in recent years. This year I am getting out my very old Nativity scene. My mother started it in 1926, and I still have some of the original pieces. I’ve added more to it over the many decades, especially more animals. I missed them last year. I think we need to become reacquainted. And maybe I’ll call my girlhood friend, who gave me Mary’s little donkey. He’s a favorite. So is the three-legged camel that’s been around so long I can’t remember when he lost his leg. But he still stands tall on three.

Funny what gets important as you get older.

Have a good Christmas.


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