Marie never threw anything Christmasy away. We reused bows, ribbons, tags, corsages, everything. She would have recycled the paper, if she could have figured out how to keep us from tearing into packages like wild animals. We always spent Christmas Eve at Marie and Tip's house and nothing was wrapped until that night. Kerri and I would always argue over this one raggedy blue bow and that little box. We both wanted something of ours in it. Then Daddy and Tip would load up the 3 of us into that station wagon to go look at Christmas lights. Mother and Marie were always last coming out of the house. I guess I was about 9 when I finally figured out how, while we were out, Santa would come. The lights would be off and the tree lights on. Around the tree, beside the wrapped gifts, were three of the things each of us had circled in the Sears catalog. Oh joy! Oh Bliss! I cherish this little box. When I hold it, for just a moment I'm 7 years old again and I feel the Christmas magic and the love that little box held.
2 hours ago