Our tree is up. Tom has to have a tree, and Laura helped with ours a couple of weeks ago. Like last year, it has lights, but no ornaments. Tom hung little candy canes, and most of them are Toby’s toys now. Laura investigates under the tree occasionally; ostensibly to be sure Toby has not opened a package that does not have his name. She usually announces if she found more packages to inspect.
Tonight Laura wondered about the stockings. Surely it was time to hang them. Stockings have been quite the tradition at our house since we all moved in together. Jan and Tom, mom and me. Almost twenty five years ago. Mom and Jan made stockings for the four of us, and a few to spare.
Even back then gifts we exchanged fit in our Santa sized stockings. Add that no one needed much of anything, and gifts among the four of us became bars of soap, toothpaste, chocolates, Jordan almonds (yum!). The last Christmas she was alive mom put a wonderful wooden pencil in my stocking. Santa with a flowing beard carved the length still hangs by its gold thread on my bulletin board.
We retired mom’s stocking and spread out the remaining three: Janice, Tom, Joanne. I suppose Mom's worked its way to the bottom of the stocking box, but I never gave it much thought.
Because Laura couldn’t wait another minute Tom sent her deep into the cubby under the eaves to retrieve stockings. Little girls are just wonderful to have handy! She came down with five and began placing them on the mantle.
I looked up and said “That’s not mine.” Laura looked startled but Jan smiled and said “You’re Grandma now.” And, Jan is inspired to go puff paint shopping tomorrow to get Emily and Laura written on the last two stockings on the mantle.