Monthly Archives: December 2011

Christmases Away From Home, 1994, 2011

A year into the Air Force, I celebrated Christmas on an island 6,000 miles from home.  Three dollars a minute for a too quick phone call to mom and dad:  Jean played softball and dad fixed the earthquake damage; mom made a … Continue reading

Posted in fatherhood, Life, memoir, Nostalgia | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Christmas Decorating Part 3: The Nativity Set; or Goodbye to Grandma

I traded my cousin Chris the black jelly beans from my ’83 Easter basket for his football card collection and his electronic Donkey Kong game.  Chris, proud of his jellybeans, showed grandma. “Jimmy!  I counted every one of those jelly … Continue reading

Posted in fatherhood, Life, memoir, Nostalgia | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Christmas Decorating Part 2: Trimming the Tree 1983, 1987, and 2011; or The Joy of Styrofoam Ornaments

Kris and I went ornament shopping together.  Wal-Mart and Hallmark, we bought a few dozen glass balls, mostly blue and red; a string of colored lights; a box of snowman ornaments to write each member of the family’s name, not … Continue reading

Posted in Elementary School, fatherhood | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Christmas Decorating Part 1: Buying Just the Right Tree; or Dads Always Get Their Way

Growing up in Northridge, I loved the weekend after Thanksgiving.  Grocery stores and little leagues set aside huge swaths of their parking lots.  Trucks came and dumped hundreds upon hundreds of twine-tied, dark green trees.  Signs reading “Stu Miller’s Christmas … Continue reading

Posted in Elementary School, fatherhood, Life | Tagged , , , , , | 10 Comments