17 December 2015
Kathleen Hamilton shares her heart-warming memories of a family Christmas in 1950s Scotland. ...
All the family went to gran’s house at on Christmas Eve and gathered around the fireplace singing their very loudest carols reserved especially for that night. This was the real meaning of Christmas tomorrow at the first glimmer of dawn we would find our stockings overflowing just as my young heart felt at that moment my sister, mum, dad Gran, aunts and uncles and cousin Terry. What more could a six year old want?
We lived in gran’s house – myself, my sister, mum and dad until we moved to our new house in 1957 just a few weeks before Christmas. Dad took charge of the Christmas decorations he had lights and decoration rigged up everywhere. In the living room stood a wonderful pine Christmas tree which dad had devoted most of his evening decorating. My sister and I were so excited to have our first Christmas in our new house. That night we lay awake long after mom had kissed us goodnight.
We awoke earlier than usual on Christmas morning. Our Christmas stockings were so full that they’d slipped off the end of our bed, making a loud frightening bump and waking us both. The contents were rolling around the floor, including Mandarin oranges and candy. ‘It’s early,’ Dad said as he rushed into our room ‘It’s four in the morning, go back to bed!’ We did but it’s hard when you’re five and seven and your Christmas stocking’s full.
One of my favourite memories of Christmases has to be the one when I saw the most beautiful dolls house under the Christmas tree. It was painted white and had everything – wallpaper, carpets in every room, linoleum in the kitchen, electric lights and furniture. We also got new pencil boxes with our names printed on them with coloured pencils inside and an annual book each - Bunty and Judy. It wasn’t until a few years later that I found out that my dad had made the doll’s house which was the most special gift.
Christmas was so much fun with lots of laughter, exchanging gifts and magic on every face.