Friday, December 31, 2010

Remembering New Years Eve

Bye Bye 2010! We loved you so. You were very good to us.

Since I was about 3, and could form coherent sentences, if you asked me what my favorite holiday was, I would say New Year's Eve. Isn't that a funny favorite holiday for a child? But it was, I remember so vividly why.

We did the same thing every year. I loved traditions and something to look forward to. In the afternoon, we always took a nap - on top of our covers, not underneath. That would be too much like sleep. And we didn't always have to fall asleep, but we had to lay down at least. I was always as excited as I was on Christmas Eve during those naps.

Then at night, we would pack up and drive to my Great Aunt and Uncle's house. Aunt Rita and Uncle Sal. The party was with family, and in their basement. Classic Italian family parties are always in basements, if you ask me. I had sausage and peppers, chopped chicken liver on crackers (yes, this has been one of my favorite foods since that age), and orange juice on ice. They had a real bar down there, which I thought was amazing as a child. We would take off our party shoes and run around in our socks, until Poppy told us to put sneakers on cause we would slip and fall. My mama made cream puffs for dessert. Every time I eat a cream puff, I am back in their house - with their avocado shag carpet.

All the boys, and my sister, would play poker with nickels. We would change into our PJ's and lay our sleeping bags in front of the TV, and play board games. We watched the ball drop on a TV with an antennae that only showed black and white picture. Then, at some point, we would fall asleep. And we would get carried to the car in pajamas and jackets, freezing cold, half awake and drive home. The next day we would watch the Honeymooners all day, and eat fried salami and mozzarella sandwiches.

I'm not sure what about Year's Eve was my favorite...or what makes every part of the night so vivid to me. Maybe because every year it was like going back to 1965, nothing ever changed, everything was black and white. I know it had something to do with the prospect of staying up so late...even thought I rarely made it straight through. Maybe it's more special now because Aunt Rita and Uncle Sal aren't here anymore. They are so hosting my New Year's Eve in heaven. But New Year's memories live in my heart, always.

New Year's Eve to me is nostalgic and surrounded by people that I love. Last year, I had a little bambino in my belly and was filled with expectation and excitement. This year has been the most life changing, and amazing, and magical. This upcoming year, my baby will learn to talk, walk, eat, play, run, hug, kiss, sing, and dance. Our family will continue to make memories that will last Reilly's lifetime. Hubby will continue to be the only one I want to make new memories with, forever and ever amen.

Happy 2011!

Love & Family Traditions,

Dirt Road Mama

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