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Winter Memories In Northwest Indiana
Christmas At The Farm
I was 12 years old in 1962 and could not wait for Christmas Eve. I knew my cousin would be coming to my house to spend the night. She had an hour and a half ride from Chicago to DeMotte, Indiana. My grandmother owned a farm and we would all get together at my grandmothers house. The farm was right next to my house. I loved her farm it was so nice and pretty. It was 162 acres and had about 50 acres of woods. She raised chickens, goats, turkeys, and pigs. She also had corn, beans, and 7 acres of asparagus.
My cousin and I would stay up late eating snacks, and playing penny poker. When my mother got home we had to be real quiet so she could not hear us .We had to be real quiet so we could watch the Honeymooners, at 10:30, and then switch to Twilight Zone with Rod Serling. After Twilight Zone, came One Step Beyond, with Joseph Cotton. We use to watch Frankenstein and scare our self. We did not even lock the door as it was such an innocent time as far as not feeling afraid some one would break in the house.
My grandmother had 10 kids in her family and this gave me plenty of cousins. The family was close when my grandmother was alive. We had so many beautiful Christmas Eves in the Old Farmhouse. They are truly precious wonderful memories.I suppose it meant so much to me as I do not have much family now. My mother only had 2 kids. I wish there were more. My Grandmother had about 20 or so grandchildren and a few great grand kids.
My cousin and I would get up and get ready to walk or get a ride to the penny candy store. Our town had O'steens shoe repair and the front side of the store sold penny candy. It was great for picking out candy. The old wooden floor would creak, so the owner knew immediately when someone came. The old woman would cut your hand off if you stole a candy. We knew better our mothers would cut the other one off. The lady would take a small brown paper bag and pick out the candy we wanted. We got a nice size bag of candy for 15 cents, a quarter and you would be in heaven.
Our Family Tradition
What You Need To Make This Sled and Reindeer
This tradition was started in Dec. of 1999. My husband had an accident at work and was laid up for quite some time. I use to bring empty grape boxes home that a friend would give me. They would be thrown out so they were glad I wanted them. I used them to store stuff I was not using as we just moved in our new house. They really came in handy.
My husband was healing from surgery and was very bored from staying home. He wondered what he could make out of the box. So, first he broke the wood box into flat pieces. He had no plan just worked off his imagination.
1. He drew one side of the sleigh and cut it out on his scroll saw.
2. He then cut out the center part of the Reindeer.
3. He laminated the deer into 5 layers each layer with the outside having the legs.
4. He then glued it on a leftover piece of hardwood flooring 10" X 2 7/8 X 14 ".
5. He used pipe cleaners to make the 8 point set of antlers and the harness and glued them in place.
6. I painted the sleigh and small pieces for my husbands project.
The actual height to the highest point of sleigh is 2 3/4", the length of sleigh is 4 1/4". the width of sleigh is 1 3/4". The Reindeer stands 3 1/2" to the top of his antlers and is 2 3/4" tall. The total length of the piece is 7 1/4" and is mounted on a 10" X 2 7/8" base.
He likes to make one each year and give one to a family member for Christmas.
The Big Storm
What Do You Enjoy Most
What did you enjoy on Christmas Eve?
It was starting to snow harder so we started to walk back to the farm. We knew we had to eat all the candy before we got home.The last quarter mile we could barely see. The snow started to really drift by the time we got home, it was almost time for supper.
My cousin and I made it home before supper was put on the table. My aunt was supposed to go to Indianapolis to visit her mom but her and my uncle never left. They said the roads were so bad the police were telling people to go back home. The neighbor across the road came over to tell us he could not get out of the driveway. They could not go to their sons house for Christmas Eve and Christmas. My grandmother invited the whole family over they brought all their German dinner, and the deserts were awesome. My aunt and uncle went to their car and brought in all the food they were suppose to take to Indianapolis. This was turning out to be a great time.
The dinner began with just about anything you wanted to eat. The turkey and salad, home made bread, real homemade butter, whole fresh milk, pork and chicken fresh from the farm, and our own vegetables from the freezer. My mother was the cake,pie,cookies, and desert person. We had wonderful tasting food. Funny thing was back then everything was real food and practically everyone was skinny.
After the supper the adults cleaned up and then played cards. My uncle played Polka music and the kids played in the back front room. At 11:00 pm all the kids except the babies loaded in the wagon and my Uncle Joe with the snowplow on the tractor took us the mile or so to church. After church we open our presents and it was wonderful.
Everyone usually goes home after Christmas Eve not that year. My cousin stayed six more days and we had so much fun. Life was so slow, easy, and peaceful, it was a great Christmas. I will remember it forever.