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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
Third day of Christmas
Thursday, December 27 2001

Home for Christmas

Getting home for Christmas has long been a theme of seasonal songs and stories, like the original movie on which the Waltons TV series was based, to mention one among many. I first became of homecoming as a major component of the holidays as a child when it was often an open question whether my adult brother Bob would make it home for Christmas. Our eldest brother, Tom, was already married with a child or two and living hundreds of miles away and not even able to try to come home by the time I was six, but Bob was still single and we were his family.

Whether historically true or a figment of my imagination I can't swear, but I "remember" Bob getting home for Christmas from the Air Force when he was stationed in Newport News, Virginia, in time to see my acting debut at the Belsano EUB Church (see the first Christmas memories entry in the index for a more complete recounting of that incident). Usually in those years he did make it home for Christmas, but if memory serves, by the time I was 11 he was out of the service and working as a long-distance truck driver and more often seemed to make it home just a few days after Christmas. At the time, I was such a positive thinker that this was fine by me (if less so for Mom and Bob) because in a sense it was like having a second Christmas shortly after the official one. Bob often gave me the most impressive gifts I got in those years, things like Gruen and Elgin swiss watches.

The year I turned 15 Bob got married to Lois in Indiana, and about three weeks before Christmas Mom and I travelled there by train—the first real train ride I'd ever had—for the wedding at Lois's family's church. Lois's family, the Zeiglers, had the house decorated for Christmas already, and even had candy dishes set out, the first time I'd experienced anyone celebrating the holiday so early, though it has become commonplace in later years. And Bob's days of trying to get home for Christmas were past to us, as his family was now somewhere else.

This year, for the first time, one of my children was away for Christmas; youngest son Kevin is with some of his girlfriend's family in New Mexico. He is scheduled to get home this weekend, and we'll have the rest of our Christmas gift exchanging then. I hope it won't be the beginning of a regular occurrence like the years when Bob was home late for Christmas, but I hope we'll enjoy the deferred celebration as much as we did back in those Belsano days.

The invitation to send your memories of Christmases related to Blacklick Valley is still open.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Real Newspaper headlines (or so it says here)

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- Survivor of Siamese Twins Joins Parents
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- Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
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—Sent by Anita Llewellyn

Thought for the day

You can preach a better sermon with your life than with your lips.

—Sent by Zan

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