It was my idea to write about a sweetest Christmas memory. However, I didn’t really consider when I came up with said idea that I’ve had 68 Christmases, 48 of them as a mother, 28 of them as a grandmother. And I’m supposed to think of one? That’s a problem.
Another problem is that I’ve already written about the ones that probably mean the most. Like the year my husband bought me a sewing machine and sat up with me until two AM on Christmas Eve while I made our daughter a dress on the old machine. Or the year that same daughter and her husband bought ping pong ball guns for everyone in the family and we spent one of the funniest half-hours of any of our lives shooting each other. I was finding ping pong balls for weeks. Or the year—
Who am I kidding? They’re all the sweetest memories. Choosing the best one would be like picking your favorite grandchild. Each of my seven claims to be my favorite and they’re all right.
Writing Christmas Town stories has joined the ranks of favorite memories. It is, in a way, like Christmas shopping in July—which I am a total failure at—since I write the story in late spring and early summer. I keep a few Christmas decorations in my office year round in case Scrooge’s muse visits me sometimes when I’m writing. I think I’ve stared the flakes out of my snow globe trying to get back into the mood for an ice skating scene when the air conditioner is running.
This year, I got to revisit the carousel in Logansport, Indiana, a town near me. Chloe, a widow who appeared in last year’s Miracle on Joyful Street, showed up in time to tell her story in The Dark Horse. I so loved the people in this story and the other Christmas Town stories. But we’ve been writing them for four or five years now. How could I possibly pick a favorite? How could any of us?
We don’t have to, although writing about Christmas Town, seeing its snowy streets and Dockery’s and The Tea Pot and Finger and Feet in my mind. It creates…well, the sweetest memory.
I wish you all as many sweetest memories as I’ve had. Share them with us—we’d love to hear about them.