Another time I asked for a five-cell flashlight so that I could use it to send Morse code messages to my friend across the street. We would spend house sending secret messages to each other. We provided a lot of business for battery companies. The first time I took my new bike to school I fell off and put a big hole in the knee of my pants. My Mom and Dad didn’t even yell at me when I came home. My mother who was an expert seamstress just sewed it up and fixed it. She just urged me to be more careful and watch the traffic.
I remember that Christmas at our house was a very big and exciting event. My mother decorated the house beautifully and we were each entitled to ask for one big gift. The Christmas tree was always a natural pine tree decorated with lights and tinsel. It was put in the corner of the living room and a wire was tied to it so if would not fall down. My little sister had once managed to pull down the entire tree upon her. The outside of the house had all blue lights around the door and each window of the house had electric candles in the window sill. My brother and I asked for two-wheel bikes one year. We sprang from our beds and rushed downstairs and looked around but no bikes. We were visibly disappointed. My parents started to laugh and told us we should look around the house. We found the two new bikes on the back porch and were thrilled. Dad as usual had put them together perfectly.
There was a gift exchange for Christmas at Grandma’s house. Since the family was so large every grandkid’s name was put into a hat and my aunts or uncles pull out names. Every Grand-kid got one gift but the name of the aunt or uncle was not put on the gift. It added to the excitement of Christmas and the family Christmas meal.