twenty six


christmas eve 1988: a story in two parts


i was but a wee lass, still fully enraptured by the santa claus spell. i firmly believed – nay, knew as fact – that mr. claus would be scooching down that chimney sometime in the noctural hours, and that knowledge was enough to deprive me of any wink of sleep my young mind hoped i would obtain. that night when i went to my bed i was running on so much adrenaline that i planned out a variety of activities to help me pass the time, including coloring, writing a short story, and relentlessly playing with my poor sleepy hamster. when i couldn’t handle the wait anymore, i decided it was time that the entire family wake up and start the present opening. of course, at this point it was still the dead of night – probably around 1 or 2 – but that meant nothing to a young child with the christmas spirit! the first step was to wake the almighty sister.

i went to heather’s room and was swiftly rebuffed by a drowsy teenage angst that told me to go away and give it a few more hours. i went back to my room for about 30 more minutes and busted back in, and again she turned me away. what was wrong with this person?! santa came and there are presents just dying to be opened downstairs!! heather must have sensed the excitement dripping out of my pores, because the next time i came in something ground-breaking occurred: the girl who seemed to hold little more than contempt for her annoying little sister responded with “JUST.GET.IN”. she welcomed me into her bed! the walls had been breeched; my sister, the coolest being i’d ever known, had just willingly allowed me to hang out with her. i think it is literally the only thing that would have stopped me from going down those stairs and ripping into those gifts, no matter the time, or if anyone else was with me.


at age thirteen, my christmases were no longer about santa claus. luckily, i had a little sister who was one of santa’s strongest supporters. after a spirited reading of, “the night before christmas,” my sister and i retired to our bedrooms for a long winter’s nap.

at approximately 2AM, my slumber was breeched. my sister was so excited that she couldn’t sleep. i told her it was too early and suggested that she go back to sleep. thirty minutes later, she returned. i sent her away again. the cycle repeated. finally, my sister had broken me down.


and she did.

i slept and she chattered about mr. claus and presents and reindeer and sugarplums and snowmen.

this remains one of our favourite christmas memories.


Great memory, great read, great photo. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Colin on 26 December 2008 @ 8pm

thanks, colin. glad you enjoyed it; brook & i had fun as co-authors.

Posted by heatherdyan on 29 December 2008 @ 9am

Oh, I hope my daughters have a relationship like you and your sister do!

Posted by heartatpreschool (Kari) on 4 January 2009 @ 2am

me too! i feel so lucky to have such a great relationship with her 🙂

Posted by heatherdyan on 6 January 2009 @ 12pm

leave a comment