Christmases past & present: Teens & Twenties writers reflect on favorite traditions, gifts


Illustration by Linda Bowden / Times-News

Today and tomorrow, families will gather together and exchange gifts, share meals and make memories. Some Teens & Twenties writers offer their favorite Christmas memories and gifts from past Christmases: A few years ago, I woke up and went downstairs to see snow on the ground, which was really unusual. But it definitely made that Christmas special to me. — Tawny Metcalf, junior at Western Alamance High School

   My dad’s side of the family usually gets together the Saturday before Christmas Eve. When my cousins and I were kids, we’d all get gifts from everyone. My cousins Samantha and Julie, along with myself, usually got the same thing. The year of my favorite Christmas memory was when we each got Barbie clothes and furniture.
   Julie and I were really the only ones who loved to play with Barbies so Samantha would let us play with hers all the time. She’d watch most of the time but that year we got her to play with us. Julie and I used to bring our Barbies every year till about 10 years old. We’ve always had fun together, us three, because we’re so close. I love being with them and I know we’ll create some more beautiful memories as we get older. Last year, my favorite gift was a laptop. — Jessica Page, intern for the Accent department

My favorite Christmas memory was watching my little sister creep down the stairs with a fuzzy bed head covered with hair still soft from her toddler years and red and green pajamas. She was about 4 years old and still so snuggly. — Lenzie Purcell, junior at UNC-Chapel Hill

My favorite memory is when I eagerly awaited for my grandparents to arrive with bags of gifts. My favorite gift is when, in 2004, I got my two little Chihuahuas. — Craig Beckner, sophomore at The Elon School

My favorite Christmas memory is from a couple years ago. I woke up really early and my mom was already awake and sitting in her chair drinking her morning coffee with her fuzzy socks on. The tree had somehow survived the night without being knocked down by our rambunctious cats. My dad had just gotten up and told me it was time to open presents. When I opened my gifts there was one that really stuck out — an amber necklace. My middle name is Amber, so to see the amber necklace was quite cool. In the same box was a scorpion encased in amber and one with a butterfly. I have always loved strange things and that is still my most memorable gift. — Kaitlin Gillespie, junior at Western Alamance High School

My favorite Christmas gifts include shoes, clothes, perfume and body fragrances; gifts for my dog and enjoying watching other family members and friends opening their gifts on Christmas. The overall best gift is just to blessed to wake up and experience another wonderful holiday with those who care the most. — Shaniece Lewis, senior at Alamance Community College

My favorite Christmastimes were spent in the Northeast — Boston, New Hampshire, Vermont and upstate New York. One Christmas, about two years ago, I was walking down Newbury Street with the woman I loved. There was a musician playing silver bells on his sax and despite the bitter cold, there was no place I would have rather been. That was our moment in time, and one of my favorites. — Jason Mitchell, freshman at Alamance Community College

My favorite Christmas memory is the year my family gave me the “Time Quartet” by Madeleine L’Engle boxed set. I had read the first book in the series and loved it, so I asked for the set. We had gotten to the last box under the tree, and I was secretly disappointed because they hadn’t shown up. The final box was very long, so I thought it couldn’t possibly be books. When I opened it, there they were. My family had purposely surprised me with the misleading box. — Joan Hedrick, senior at Weaver Academy

Every year, right around Christmas, my family and I bake and decorate sugar cookies (only a few last past Christmas) and watch the classic Christmas specials like “The Little Drummer Boy” and the animated version of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” Then, on Christmas Day, we watch “A Christmas Story” and have a family meal. I don’t have a particular favorite gift, but my entire Christmas traditions center around time with family. — Kendall Wiggins, junior at Western Alamance High School


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