Sunday, December 8, 2013

Christmas 1952


My brother Brian and I holding our homemade lamb and horse (made from an old wool coat), wearing our handmade robes……a super long time ago!  (Brian died in 2002.)  My Mom could make anything and did….including my Dad’s suits.  We never called our parents by their first names, so I was surprised to notice the stockings. 

My parents bought this house when I was one, in 1947 (I was told later that the house was at least 75 years old then) and if you look close you will see some very large design floral wallpaper in the background of this picture.  I do love that Persian style carpet, though. Don’t I look like Princess Lea from Star Wars in that hairdo ?

This home was right in the heart of the University District (near the U of W) in Seattle.  When I grew up it was a small tight family neighborhood where kids could walk and play anywhere….’as long as you are home by dinner’!  The neighborhood consisted of a few small families, single older folks, a famous local artist and some college students.  I look back on those times and really can’t believe the freedom we all had at those young ages.  Never happen today!

What was your neighborhood like when you were little?  What are your childhood Christmas memories?

15 comments:

  1. Oh, how your black and white photo evoked memories for me. My mother also made so many gifts for us. All of a sudden I recall a Dutch boy and girl doll set she made - sort of the Dutch version of my Raggedy Ann and Andy.

    Weird thought, but my maiden name was Bates and we did have relatives in Washington. Was your husband from Seattle also? I will have to ask my cousins if they have any of the names of our Seattle relatives.

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    1. My ex husbands family was from Wenatchee, they were housemovers.

      Glad you had some sweet memories of Christmas past...I can picture a Dutch version of Raggedy Ann...cool.

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  2. Hi Karen! I loved seeing this photo of you and your brother! I was sorry to read that he has passed. I love that your Mom made your clothes, and the robes you are wearing, including the stuffed toys you are both clutching! I sure do wish it were more like that these days! When I was a child, we were allowed to roam around with a lot of freedom. As long as our Mom knew where we were! We had to check in, but we could be off on our horses, or bikes all day long. Home for dinner though! Always home for dinner!
    My Christmas memories are wonderful!!! All of them!
    I have missed you.
    xo Kris

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  3. Mine was very similar to yours. We rode our bikes either in the street or on the sidewalk where there was one; played outside til dark and never afraid at all. Wish my children and their children could experience those happy days too.

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  4. Don't you wish you had those handmades today? Sweet picture, good memories most of them!

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    1. I am lucky to still have my horse...yet, I sure do.

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  5. hi Karen...I was thinking of you this morning and hope all is well. My husband is the youngest of six children and they lived rural...the stories he tells of what they did when they were kids are really unbelievable!! Nothing bad but very mischievious!! His mother would tell them to go and NOT come home until dark...can you imagine that now a days??....

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  6. I grew up in small town America...walked "downtown" to shop. At age 5, my mom didn't hesitate to send me 6 blocks away to the little grocery store....money clenched in my fist. I remember the penny candy at the check out...it was always my treat for having run that errand. The paper strips with little candy dots on them, gummy fish, candy cigarettes (Yuck!).....so many memories. So, so glad to have grown up in the 50's and 60's. Oh, and Christmases were the best!!!

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  7. What a time it was growing up in the fifties and sixty's. I was a country kid, we would play up and down our road but had to be home at chore time. Back then I had a tiny bit of a problem getting home on time, a little too much visiting, imagine that! So I would get grounded to our yard for a couple of days. Pure torture for me. Mom sewed everything! As I got in high school I always had a package that contained a new store bought sweater and then some wool yardage for a skirt. That way I could pick out the style.
    I 'm so glad you still have that horse, give it an extra hug this Christmas!! Ahh, the good old days!!

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    1. I can't believe it...I use to get the sweater and fabric too...usually she had it made already...too funny!

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  8. What a sweet picture of you and your brother and wonderful memories to go along with it. When I was about your age in this picture we lived in a small (at the time) town about 40 miles south of San Francisco. There were at least a dozen kids living in the court which was always our playground because every parent could look out the window and see what we were up to. My brother ended up marrying the girl next door only a few years ago.

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    1. I am amazed at how our childhoods affected us....just like you story of your brother going back to marry the girl next door!

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  9. We had a fireplace similar to that one..We burned coal in it..We had a brass fender and coal bucket..We lived in the Phila suburbs..

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    1. We had a coal furnace in our house but I don't think we ever used coal in the fireplace...such a small world we live in.

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  10. What a cute photo. And sorry that you lost your brother.
    I agree with you that our kids now don't have any freedom. I used too play in the woods by my parents house in Germany all day with my friends and make tree houses (go figure ;) but I would never let my kids do this here in the US. So sad. I loved having my freedom.
    You look great but the way!

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