Christmas in California
Hi! I live in Modesto, California. For my family, Christmas usually begins around November 1st of each year. This is when the TV stations usually start airing all the different Christmas commercials. Around December 1st, my family and I go buy our Christmas tree. We decorate it with tinsel and Christmas decorations that are either hand-made or have simply been handed down to us over the years. It is topped by an electric spinning Christmas Star that was originally bought by my Grandparents back in 1952.
The Christmas tree is the main centerpiece in our living room. But there is a second, and more personally sentimental, centerpiece: a Nativity scene which has been in my family since the 1920′s. It always has a very prominent spot on top of our entertainment center.
While we are decorating our tree, we always listen to Christmas music. Afterwards, my Dad always lights a fire in the fireplace, and we all snuggle up on the couch to watch Christmas movies. My personal favorites are “Ben-Hur,” “A Christmas Carol,” and “A Christmas Story” (the comedy about the little boy who will do anything to get a toy BB Gun for Christmas).
We also put up a special Christmas calender that was made for us by my Grandma back in 1980. It counts down the days until Christmas in a special way: attached to each day on the calender is a tiny Christmas figurine or ornament with velcro on the back. At the top of the calender is a fabric Christmas tree. On each new day of the month, the particular ornament or figurine is removed from that day and attached to the fabric Christmas Tree, thereby counting down the days until Christmas.
On Christmas Eve, one of my parents reads “The Night Before Christmas” to my brother and me. They take turns each year. Then, my brother and I are allowed to open one present each. The next morning, either my brother or I wake up around 7:00am, and go around waking everyone else up about an hour later. After we’ve had breakfast, my Mom always reads to us from the Bible the story of the birth of Jesus Christ. Afterwards, we each take turns opening presents. After that is over, we usually watch a few more Christmas movies, then my Mom starts making the Christmas dinner. It’s always different from year-to-year, but it’s also always delicious and memorable. I hope you’ve enjoyed the facts about my family Christmases in California!