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Merry Christmas, merry memories

From the Farm

December 23, 2011
By Kerry Hoffman , The Journal

I recently read a column composed by another writer that reflected on her favorite holiday memories.

It was a bit funny and got me to thinking about all my favorite Christmas memories.

With a grin on my face, I recalled events from years and years ago.

Article Photos

Kerry Hoffman

For a great portion of my life, I was a stuffed-animal fanatic. Every year I would ask for any kind of creature created of felt and filled with white fluffy stuffing.

I believe half the fun for me was waiting to see what type of animal my parents could find. One year it was the cutest, pinkest, football-sized pig. He stayed with me forever. In fact, he got to ride in the rear window of the first car I drove as a teenager - an old Chevy Impala, I think. (I now recall riding in the rear window myself when I was a child. Ah, those memories of looking at the sky as the car screamed down the highway.)

Another favorite stuffed animal was this huge green-spotted frog with a tan underbelly. I kid you not; if I stood that frog on the tips of his hind toes he was just as tall as me. I again kept that frog as a companion way into my late teens. He just looked so cute on my bed, whenever I chose to make it. When he started losing his fluffy innards, I realized it was time to let him go.

Another one of my favorite holiday gifts I received every year from my grandparents. I was guaranteed a new flannel night gown. I probably put that thing on as soon as I opened it and wore it for 12 days straight. Hey, flannel only gets better with age.

My mother reminded me that as a child there was a time period that all I wanted to wear was flannel shirts. Lately, I kind of missed those innocent times and there was not a written care in my world. I recalled what my mother said regarding my addiction to flannel and I purchased myself a new flannel shirt during a recent visit to a Mill's Fleet Farm.

I also recall a time when all I wanted to eat was scrambled eggs. I have no idea what was up with that and it had absolutely nothing to do with Christmas memories.

As the years have sped past, I have started creating new memories with my own family of four.

Several years ago I purchased a toy gun for each member of the family. Needless to say, for an hour after opening presents we played a rambunctious game of Cops and Robbers.

Two years ago, Joey wrapped a present for me. I don't recall exactly what the present was, but I do recall the one other mundane item he threw in the box as filler.

It was a stuffed green dinosaur about the size of a grapefruit that was our cat's favorite toy. She actually liked to play fetch with it. It also had a gaping hole on its neck with stuffing falling out of it.

We all laugh when we recall this little stunt.

One year we gave Steve a Barbie. That was a hoot as well. Joey and Russell still remember that even though they were just tots at the time. (Hey, it was their idea, not mine.) Steve still grumbles when we bring up the Barbie.

I am so excited this year to give Russell his "special" gift. I know we are all going to laugh so hard at that moment and then laugh every time we look at the picture.

I have yet to figure out what kind of unusual gift to give Joey. I chuckle when I walk past the Superman underwear at a local store, but I am not so sure I want to see Joey in that.

My Christmas memories may not be normal in some people's version of normal, but it's what my family enjoys and remembers for years to come.

May you all have a Merry Christmas and may you create funny memories.

For questions, or comments, e-mail me at



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