The holidays are upon us. I swear it crept up faster than normal this year. I like the holidays. They’re definitely not my favorite time of year as I’ve written before it’s all about Halloween. But I do enjoy them. I like Christmas trees, am a big fan of stockings, and I enjoy giving presents. I was recently having a conversation about the holidays and my memories of them as a child. Well my holiday’s as a child were pretty much awesome. I am a nostalgic person in general as we all know. But the holiday’s I think I get more so, and not even necessarily for my own childhood experiences but for a completely different time period.
I think as a child my parents being of the baby boomer generation, they kept a lot of Christmas tradition from their own childhoods. Our family stocking’s my grandmother knit. They have a kind of scary Santa on them and say our name. My other grandmother made giant Christmas bags one green and one red that she would bring over me and my sister’s presents in, mainly presents having to do with Barbie or American Girl Dolls. She also wrapped them in the colored funny pages from Sunday’s paper.
One of my favorite parts was the baking of gingerbread cookies, the frosting was absolutely delicious and my mom would scold us for dipping our fingers in it. My favorite cookie cutters were the metal ones and I loved to the rabbit and cupid. Both which were not for Christmas as my mom would point out but still let me make my gingerbread bunnies and cupids. While baking cookies we would listen to the radio. But not just any old radio program or radio station. We would listen to the story of “Cinnamon Bear and the Crazy Quilt Dragon.” I can not emphasize this enough. I LOVED to do this.
Cinnamon Bear and the Crazy Quilt Dragon was a holiday radio program the came out in 1937. The story focused on Judy and Jimmy Barton who go to the enchanted world of Maybeland to recover their missing Silver Star that belongs on their Christmas tree. Helping on the search is the Cinnamon Bear, a stuffed bear with shoe-button eyes and a green scarf. They meet other memorable characters during their quest, including the Crazy Quilt Dragon (who repeatedly tries to take the star for himself) , the Wintergreen Witch, Fe Fo the Giant and Santa Clause.
We would listen to this every year while making cookies and as I said I LOVED it. Not only because the story was fun for a kid, by the way I still find it fun and I’m 28, but because I got to use my imagination. No one could tell me how I thought the Crazy Quilt Dragon looked was wrong. I got to decide what Maybeland looked like.
The idea of listening to radio was also very romantic to me. I watched A Christmas Story every year, still do. And Christmas during the 1940s well just seemed awesome. Things were simpler. Times were tough during WW2 as they times are rough now with our economy but there was always a message of hope. There was always a brighter side. Whether it was through film, the radio, the news, or FDR on the radio. We just don’t have that anymore. Even during the holidays the new’s is filled with stampede into target, more dead in Iraq, new Barbie maybe used by pedophiles, or holiday sale’s lower than expected. Awesome exactly what I want to hear about after a long day of work and dealing with life. I’m not saying we should sugar coat it but I think there is a better way to word things. I think that back in the day we use to get people’s moral going by having a message of hope at all times in the air instead of doom and gloom. So I’m leaving you with a happy holidays and a favorite quote from Winston Churchill. Because ya things are rough right now for many but they will get better. So enjoy the holiday’s with friends, family, the lot, and sit down and listen to “Cinnamon Bear and the Crazy Quilt Dragon”. Trust me you’ll love it.
Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.