20 days till Christmas

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Christmas was a two day affair when I was a kid. On Christmas Eve we would gather at Fourth Street and spend quality time playing with my cousins. My Grandmother observed all the Polish traditions of Wigilia (Christmas Eve) and dinner was very simple, Borscht and fish. However there was no dairy products, no sour cream for the borscht, no butter for bread. I was always hungry on this day, since I was afraid of the soup and had no interest in the fish. In retrospect I was not very smart.

My Grandmother would lead us in prayer in Polish and invoke every relative living and dead. Over the years the prayer got longer and longer. Later we would would break the opłatek (Christmas Wafer ) and wish each other luck and joy in the coming year. We still follow that tradition in our family.

After dinner we would sing Christmas Carols around the piano, play with each other and later get presents from Aunts and Uncles. It was the best of times.

Christmas Eve 1949

Christmas Eve 1949

Christmas Eve at Fourth Street. Cousins and presents galore.

Christmas Eve 1949

Aunt Kay doles out gifts to her boys. Jim is the one on the floor looking at the camera.


3 thoughts on “20 days till Christmas

  1. Yes we were Cinnie……..wow and thank you John ….beautiful memories………and of course the next day after Christmas presents at our own homes, we all went back to Babcia’s for more great food , presents, family, music and joy! Uncles on guitars, my mom on piano and all the wonderful voices of our uncles , aunts and cousins…..then the men would play poker! God bless us all………..share the love………


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