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Come on, hurry! Let’s go upstairs and change. Santa won’t come if we’re watching for him! ~ Mom

My mother prodded us up the stairs into the bathroom.adventkranze


Noises filtered upstairs as we got dressed for our traditional German Christmas Eve celebrations.

“We don’t have a chimney, how will Santa get in?” we wondered, “and where’s Dad?”

“Santa will figure it out, be quiet and get dressed,” Mom urged.

Our dining room table, rescued from someone’s garbage years ago had been stripped of multiple layers of paint and restored to its original beauty by my parents.

It was decked out with Rouladen and Rote Kohl for dinner.

A wreath with four advent candles flickered as Perry Como crooned Christmas songs from the old console stereo.

The tree lit up the room in a soft, colourful glow, the Angel was perched at the very top and presents were stacked below.

Seated around the table were Mom, Dad, Michael and me.

Some Christmases we were joined by Onkel Karl, Tante Stella, Eva and Jim.

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Christmas was magical – maybe because we celebrated Christmas Eve

when it was dark and the lights were colourful and everything was shining

especially our smiles.