Thursday, July 5, 2012
Christmas in July...Guest post from author, Tiffany A. Higgins
The day Michelle posted the reminder that her blog, The Christmas Spirit, was getting ready to celebrate Christmas in July, just so happened to also be Rudolph Day! Naturally, I flashed back to memories from my childhood. There is one memory in particular that always sticks with me. Sometimes, I look back over it fondly. At other times, admittedly, I think on what a dork I must have looked like. I am getting ahead of myself, so we shall back it up a bit.
It was Christmastime, December of 1990. I was fast approaching my 9th birthday. This particular year was a particularly hard year for a little girl. It was my last birthday and Christmas that I would spend in Illinois (at almost 9 I didn’t understand that there would still be family Christmases when we came up to visit). I was saying goodbye to friends I’d known my whole life. I will never know if they planned it this way or if I really was just the lucky girl, but, here is my strongest memory of Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
In Brownies, we were gearing up for the big Fox River Valley Christmas Parade. Some of us would be reindeer and some of us would be Christmas packages. One lucky little girl would be Rudolph. Rudolph was the coveted spot. He (played by a she of course) would be the leader of the entire Brownie troop in the parade. He would be front and center when we later stopped at the nursing home to sing to the folks at the retirement community.
In order to avoid the inevitable fight, the Brownie leaders came up with a fool proof plan to choose the lucky girl that would play Rudolph in the upcoming Christmas Parade and singing excursion. They baked cookies. And what better cookies to represent Rudolph than M&M cookies? I’m sure right now you are trying to figure out just how M&M cookies could decide who got to be Rudolph. Well, here’s what they did. They took all the red M&M’s out of the bowl. They made a batch of chocolate chip cookie dough. They pressed a few M&M’s into the dough, but only one cookie received a red M&M. Some lucky person got to eat all the rest of the reds. They then took all the cookies and placed them in a brown paper bag (no peeking), and when snack time rolled around we each selected our cookies from the bag. Once our cookies were placed on a napkin in front of us, they announced that whoever had the red M&M was destined to be Rudolph. To my surprise, I was the one holding the cookie with the red M&M.
I remember that day so clearly. I can still close my eyes and picture the school cafeteria, where we held our Brownie meetings, and everyone around the table either cheering for me or grumbling that it wasn’t them. I spent the following weeks preparing for the Christmas parade and gloating a bit that I held the coveted spot. It came along at a perfect time. I was so engrossed in my duties as Rudolph that I completely forgot to worry about the upcoming move.
Eventually, I said my tearful goodbyes, and we moved to Texas, where I joined a new troop and made lots of new friends, but never have I had a Christmas quite like my last one with my Brownie troop in Illinois. I believe that is when I came to understand just how important Christmas memories could be. All these years later, I have never forgotten the feeling of being special. I lit up like Rudolph’s nose that year both in the parade and later at the nursing home. I can remember putting smiles on people’s faces and that warm glow growing deep inside of me.
As they say, a smile is contagious, and I don’t believe a soul that passed through my life that day was not infected by my glow.
So, that is my Christmas memory to share with all of you this Christmas in July, May the Spirit of Christmas reside with us all, every day of our lives. Remember, somewhere, some way, somebody’s life is touched by what you do. Thanks Michelle for having me over for a visit. Merry Christmas in July to you and all your followers.
~Tiffany A. Higgins
Tiffany is the author of We've Seen Santa. She has always loved writing. She has been writing for as long as she can remember. She has dabbled in poetry, short stories, children's stories and hopes to one day write a novel. She resides in a small town in Michigan. She is excited to be being published for the first time in her life. This book deal is fulfilling a lifelong dream of hers. Visit her WEBSITE.
I hope you enjoyed Tiffany's story. Thank you, Tiffany, for sharing your memory with us.
Always in spirit....