Recently, as I was rewriting a chapter from my memoir into the essay Giving Up Christmas that was published in Tablet Magazine, I leafed through a photo album of childhood memories, mainly to see if I could find a picture that captured the magic of my childhood Christmases. I found those, but I also found something I didn’t expect, something I had completely forgotten about, and something I was stunned to see I had recreated in my adult life with my own family, albeit a bit differently: I found the above photo of the kitchen window of my childhood, looking out over the snowy fields and the pond behind our house, which my dad had decorated with stickers of the nativity scene.
And below is a photo of the window in our present day sun porch, decorated by my younger son, who also takes care to affix an additional gel sticky candle atop the window menorah for every day of Chanukah, just as my dad used to have the three magi appear in the kitchen window in January.
It might not be particularly astounding that my dad and now my family decorate for the holidays by putting stickers on windows, and yet I was moved to find a window of my childhood recreated in my adult life in my own home, in particular because it wasn’t a conscious effort of mine.
December 24 Update: I found this post goes well with Jennifer Rizzo’s Holiday Link-Up Party, sharing holiday traditions via a blog link-ups. So I’m throwing this post into the mix. Feel free to visit her site for more holiday traditions.