Family: Still looking for an old-fashioned Christmas

Wow! Here is is December already.

How did that happen?

And where did all this snow come from?

I mean soft and gentle snowflakes cascading gently to the ground to does create a nice Christmas card effect, but this is ridiculous.

As a working girl, not a particularly brave working girl, but a working girl, non-the-less, I found myself driving on the icy roads this weekend while the snow fell mercilessly all around me.

True, it was Christmas card beautiful, but driving in it was not particularly pleasant. In fact, I did not feel the spirit of the season surround me in any way, shape or form. And the lyrics to the song, ‘Walking in a Winter Wonderland’ playing on the car radio did nothing to improve my state of mind.

But, despite travel which was not recommended for the faint of heart or anyone else for that matter, I have to say I can already feel the slow stirrings of that holiday magic.

It’s weird how that happened.

Maybe the embers of that magic, gone cold throughout the year, were stirred slightly when I polished the mantle of an old coal oil lantern.

The lantern belonged to my mother.

I never knew my mother.

But, still, on a snowy, cold day in December when I am caught up in the throes of Christmas planning and decorating and working girl woes, I think of her and, somehow, I feel a kind of connection, like she knows me, somehow.

I hope so.

And, along with this feeling is the belief that somewhere, buried under layers of a modern Christmas, there still exists that magic of long ago.

And that’s what I want.

I want to find that magic.

I polish the old lantern slowly.

Outside the snow is falling and, in the hush of the morning, it seems like time travel could be a distinct possibility.

I close my eyes and will myself back there.

Back to the days of long ago.

Back to Christmases where childhood and innocence played hand in hand. Back to the days when Christmas was a huge tree set up in a simple white church, a brown paper bag filled with a Japanese orange and homemade fudge, brown stockings and a real tree. Back to the time when Christmas was bubble lights and tinsel and home.

I smile as I set the polished lantern on the little old table that, once a very long time ago, belonged to my parents. Enough reminiscing. I have to get to work.

Deadlines, you know.

I grab a coffee mug and my keys and away I go. Out the door.

My first brush with reality is getting my car stuck.

Did I mention the snow? Apparently, my vehicle was the first one to break tracks on what used to be the road in my subdivision. I drove backward. Still stuck. I drove ahead. Stuck even worse. I pounded the steering wheel in frustrtion and muttered self-righteously, “why me?”

Still stuck.

Finally, after I drive ahead and back and ahead and back for a total of two million times I somehow become unstuck.

But now I’m late and any Christmas magic I had managed to find is totally gone.

But, it will come back. I know it will.

It always does.

And when I get home, I will know that my husband, bless his heart, will have turned on the outdoor Christmas lights and their glow will look simply amazing under the soft blanket of snow that covers the trees in our front yard.

It is true that to turn on the lights he simply has to say, “hey, google, turn on the Christmas lights and Google will.

It’s not magic, really. It’s called Google Home and the kids bought the device for my husband for his birthday. He loves it and says it listens to him much better than humans such as myself, listen.

I smile and say nothing.

After all, I’m still looking for an old-fashioned Christmas.

Now, that involves real magic!

Treena Mielke is the editor of the Rimbey Review. She lives in Sylvan Lake with her family.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Shaun Janse van Rensburg, a Red Deer resident, said he is tired of changing clocks twice a year. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff
After COVID, Kenney may consider referendum on daylight savings

Albertans may be divided on several issues today, but there’s a consensus… Continue reading

COVID-19-death toll in Alberta reached 309 according to numbers posted on the province’s website Tuesday afternoon. (Image courtesy CDC)
Another 422 COVID cases reported in Alberta and two more deaths

The Alberta government confirmed 422 COVID-19 cases Tuesday and two more virus… Continue reading

test tube with the blood test is on the table next to the documents. Positive test for coronavirus covid-19. The concept of fighting a dangerous Chinese disease.
COVID-19 death toll verges on 10,000 as second wave continues to surge

Nearly 10,000 Canadians have died due to COVID-19, a mark of the… Continue reading

The Red Deer RCMP has filed another set of charges after an alleged assault at an anti-racism rally on Sept. 20. (File photo by Advocate Staff)
More assault charges filed after Sept. 20 anti-racism rally in Red Deer

Trevor Lyle Roy faces a second set of charges stemming from the event

Your weather forecast for Thursday, August 1st, 2019. (Pixabay)
Expect a slightly windy day in Red Deer Tuesday

Expect a slightly windy day in Red Deer. Although as of noon… Continue reading

Alice Kolisnyk, deputy director of the Red Deer Food Bank, says the agency expects an increase in demand as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Every new subscription to the Red Deer Advocate includes a $50 donation to the food bank. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Support the food bank with a subscription to the Red Deer Advocate

The community’s most vulnerable members are always in need of a hand,… Continue reading

Reimagining ‘The Craft’ for a new batch of aspiring witches

Reimagining ‘The Craft’ for a new batch of aspiring witches

Fresh Air Experience owner Jon Digney poses for a photo in his store Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Businesses, cities look to give Canadians outdoor rec options during pandemic winter

Businesses, cities look to give Canadians outdoor rec options during pandemic winter

Indigenous fishermen head from the harbour in Saulnierville, N.S. on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. A First Nation in Nova Scotia that was struggling to sell its lobster harvest amid tensions over its self-regulated fishery says it has managed to find a buyer for a portion of its catch. THE CANADIAN PRESS /Andrew Vaughan
Another First Nation in Nova Scotia plans to start a self-regulated lobster fishery

Another First Nation in Nova Scotia plans to start a self-regulated lobster fishery

The TMX Group logo, home of the TSX, is shown in Toronto on June 28, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim
North American stock markets flat a week ahead of U.S. election

North American stock markets flat a week ahead of U.S. election

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau adjusts his mask as he leaves a news conference Tuesday October 20, 2020 in Ottawa. About 130 tech CEOs in Canada are accusing the prime minister of ignoring the needs of the innovation economy and being slow to enact data and intellectual property policies. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘We need a champion in government’: Tech CEOs want prosperity strategy from Trudeau

‘We need a champion in government’: Tech CEOs want prosperity strategy from Trudeau

The corporate logo of Teck Resources Limited is shown. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO
Vancouver miner says sale of oilsands stake more likely as output allowed to rise

Vancouver miner says sale of oilsands stake more likely as output allowed to rise

Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen rises during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Feds split rapid-housing cash between big cities, offer up rest for projects

Feds split rapid-housing cash between big cities, offer up rest for projects

Most Read