TBT: Christmas, circa 1981

I got this out of the treasure trove envelope of photos my Mom dropped off at my house this summer. I’m still sorting through them, and I find a new gem every time I look inside. Every picture of my late Memaw is a gem to me. Same with all the pictures of me with my beaming little-girl smile — I was always happy. There was no reason not to be.

Judging from the other Christmas photos that were taken at our apartment on Birch Hill Drive, this is likely 1981, and I am five years old here. (Could be ’82, though — no one wrote on the backs of these photos.) It seems that I got my gumball machine bank, crow puppet, Raggedy Ann, another doll, and Potzee Bear for Christmas that year.

Potzee Bear, by the way, is still alive and well and sitting in the rocking chair in our living room as I write this.

I see these old pictures and the details trigger so many vague but vivid memories. I remember the tinkly sound the ornaments used to make — they were pastel colored and their texture reminds me now of sea salt. I remember my Uncle Donnie, who was a carny and only made it home for holidays, sleeping on that couch. I remember that purple nightgown of Memaw’s, and how it felt all silky smooth when we’d curl up together to watch TV in the evenings before bed.

I was a very happy little kid.

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