Thursday, December 24, 2009
The Cabbage Patch Dolls & The Bottle of Zambuka
With Christmas Day only hours away. There are so many things to get done, down to he last minute. Wrapping, shopping, family plans, going down the check list, preparing recipes, mailimg out cards and letters, and above all making sure we get that perfect gift for that special person (or people)
For me, i will be doing some house hoping starting with my baby sisters house tonight for our kriss Kringle.
Last night, i could not help but to allow the baby to open one of his gifts early. The one i knew he would be most excited for. The bike. As i sat on the floor next to him unwrapping his gift, childhood memories filled my mind. Christmas as a child was one of the most exciting days of the year for my siblings and i. Was it because of the gifts? No, NOT at all. It was a day of fun, family and festivity. We worked together to help prepare meals, my mother and vuvo (grandmother)as a ritual -baked "masa" portuguese sweet bread, and portugese songs played all morning as we danced to the music that echoed warmth, joy and unity (until someone got drunk lol)That day was about togetherness. It was a time we got together with aunts, cousins, uncles, grand parents, god parents, family friends - who we were told to call aunty and uncle (lol) and neighbours. There was always an hour or two every year for vuvo (grandma) to have a great childhood story session with tales of back home Christmas. No matter how much wrong we did on this day we never got a beating. Mom and dad were to busy entertaining the guests :-)
So as i sat watching Captain (my baby) filled with excitment as he unwrapped his bike, i felt his joy in my heart and remembered as a child the year Cabbage Patch dolls were the "must have" dolls for every young girl. However my sister and i did not have one. Guess our parents could not afford it, as they would say. Hhmmmm. Right. We went the entire year that year playing with our friends patch dolls and wishing we had one.
That year, Christmas Eve 1983, mom and dad called my sister Sue and i out into the living room and dad asked "what is the name of those dolls you guys always talk about?" and my sister and i, at the same time, yelled out "Cabbage Patch Dolls!" I do not remember what he said next...i only saw him pull out 2 patch dolls from underneath the table. One was a premie and the other was a blonde. I don't know about my sister, but i think my heart stopped beating for a minute or more. When i realized it was real and not a dream, i started screaming with joy and kissed mom and dad about a hudread times before Sue and i ran off to our rooms where we stayed for the next few hours playing with our new toys until the guests arrived.
Later that evening, while we were still on our Cabbage Patch high and showing off to our cousins who could not care less because they already had a FEW, Sue decided to take a taste of the tasty looking stuff in the bottle with the branches at the bottom that taste like licorice, ZAMBUKA! Mom and dad had about 10 bottles of liquor on the dining room table where guests were helping themselves too. To make a long story short Suzie drank half the bottle and almost died that night. All i remember were her words that she could barely let out while she was over the toilet puking her brains out with vuvo holding her hair back "Liz where is my cabbage patch doll?" Yeahhh i know! Crazy
After that night was over, when grandma was over her fear of Sue dying, Sue then got her beating. I knew it was coming. After the beating that morning, we went back to playing with the dolls.
Those are my two Christmas stories.
A Christmas note from D.E.V.A
Today, our lives are becoming hetic and fast. People are so over whelmed in their daily routines that they hardly get time to spend with their friends and family. There is no time for fun. And when we do have fun, we feel guilty. Especially for us moms and dads. Don't make your Christmas this year commercial. Get back to your childhood roots. Play music, dance with your cousins, let the young ones do eachothers make-up, play board games or have a marble competition, bake shaped cookies, pull out the dominos or a deck of cards, and don't let everyone leave. Plan a sleep over. Don't have the space? That's ok, niether did we, BUT make the space. Put the guys in one room and the girls in the other. Or, lay all the blankets down in the living room and slip in a Christmas movie or tell stories all night. Get the children involved too. Don't rush. Relax and enjoy the love in the room.
TIP: Don't wait until the next holiday to get together again. As a matter a fact plan the date before everyone leaves. We need to break this curse that our generation (my age group) started.
What is your Christmas story? Or the one gift you will never forget? Share it here with us!