Saturday, December 27, 2008

A little trip down memory lane...

Something I said to my kids that my mom used to say to me:

Child: What do I do first in my room?
Me: Make your bed first.
C: Why?
M: Your room will already look cleaner, even before you put anything away.
C: I hate making my bed!

When I was a kid, I'd always ask my mom that same question and her response would be the same as mine is now. It got to the point, I would just do a shotty job cleaning my room and then I'd just ask her if I could skip making my bed. She would usually let me. It turns out she was right now, I LOVE it when my bed is made, the room really does look cleaner!

A Christmas memory from when I was a kid that I shared with my kids this week:

Every year at our house my Mom and Dad would let us get up at 5 to open gifts. We were told that was the time before we went to bed every year. On Christmas morning, somewhere between 12 and 1 I would get up to look and see if Santa had come yet and once he had, I would go back to bed and then get back up to look again ever 20 or 30 minutes. I LOVED looking what was in my stocking. Each time I would get up, pull everything out, look at it, then try to put it back the same way Santa did, then I'd go back to bed and repeat it a few minutes later. By about 1:30 in the morning, I wo uld have run ins with siblings and then we would start asking if we could get up and open presents. My parents would say no and remind us of the 5am time.

The Christmas we lived in McMinnville, Oregon, the routine was the same for me. But this year, I was up at the same time as my older brother Ryan. We came up with a plan. Actually I think he said something in just, I took it for a great idea and then we executed! Around 2 in the morning, Ryan told me we could get up earlier and open gifts if we just moved the clocks ahead. Mom and Dad would never find out and Christmas would come sooner.

That seemed like a great idea to me. All we had to do was change the clocks on the VCR, the kitchen and on MY DAD'S NIGHTSTAND. Ryan graciously volunteered to change the VCR and the Kitchen and I got the job of sneaking into my Mom and Dads room, sneaking around their bed, and standing in space about 2 feet wide that separated my Dad from his alarm clock to change the time.

It made sense to me though, since I didn't know how to change the VCR time and the kitchen clock was up too high. After this conversation, Ryan went to bed (I don't think he thought I'd do it.) and I took a few deep breaths and went up the stairs and turned left to go into my parents room. I tiptoed in, got to the nightstand, freaked out when I heard my Dad breath out a LOUD snore, then quickly, hit the time button, tapped the hour button twice and then hurried out FAST. By this time is was 3:45ish.

I went down to Ryan and told him I did he, he got up and changed the other clocks, and 15 minutes later I went into my Mom and Dad's room and told them it was already 5!

The got up, somehow more tired than usual and the unwrapping of presents began.

When you have a family of 10, it takes a while to open all the gifts. We typically took about 2 hours. When we were done, and everyone was playing with their new things, I remember my Dad looking at his watch to see what time it was. He was sitting between Ryan and I. (I was in front of the love seat, Ryan was in front of the TV, Dad was in the middle of the floor, close to the archway--in case anyone in my fam is trying to visualize) He looked at his watch, then at the VCR, then back to his watch again. During his breif confusion, he commented we got done early, said "Charlet, I think my watch quit" and then Ryan said, "No, Dedra moved your clock ahead. It's only 5 in the morning!' Then I said 'It was Ryan's idea! He changed the clocks in the living room and kitchen!" I don't remember my parents laughing about it--they got good at holding a straight face I guess, but I also know we didn't get in trouble either.

For the rest of the time that I lived at home, it seems that we retold this story each year at Christmas, and the only bad thing about it, is that once you pull a trick like that, it never works again.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!!! ttfn


  1. Ryan is pleading having no recollection... :) Actually he remembers it quite well. My kids are still cracking up over it. I'm betting something similar is bound to happen here in the years to come. Thanks for sharing Dedra! Just proof to me that he still hasn't grown up!

  2. So funny!! We could never do anything like that my dad was always on shift work so we either had to get up early and open before he had to be to work or wait for him to get home from work (that was the worst) and then we had to wait for my aunts and grandma to come too. We did a lot of waiting.

  3. I loved this story. I had to read it aloud to Dave and he remembers doing something onery too. My boys tell me they rigged the advent calendar so they could play with the toys, who cared about the candy when it was plentiful at times. Thanks for the kudos earlier in the blog too. I have enjoyed teaching and I am anxious to see where I'll be next year!