Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Pioneer's Christmas


In the pioneer days, the home was decorated with green branches and homemade decorations. They did not have a big Christmas tree because there was no room for a large tree in their small homes. Pine cones, nuts, berries and popcorn chains were hung on the tree. Figures or dolls out of straw or yarn were made. Cookie dough ornaments and gingerbread men were also hung on the tree.

The Christmas dinner was planned and preparation of the food began weeks ahead of time. The Christmas goose was fattened up and the plum pudding was left to age in the pot until Christmas day. There were chores that began months before Christmas - such as making the gifts for the family members ( corn husk dolls, sachets, carved wooden toys, pillows, footstools and embroidered hankies ). Scarves, hats, mitts and socks had to be knitted. Girls were able to knit before they were six years old. Boys would make boxes for presents.

If there had been a good harvest that year, presents were placed inside stockings . The stockings were hung on the fireplace . Cookies and fruit might also be found in the stockings.

Christmas Eve was a night for singing carols and telling stories around the fireplace. Christmas Day the whole family attended church and returned home to a Christmas meal. Then it was time to visit friends and neighbors.

It is interesting to hear that things really have not changed that much at Christmas time.


slommler said...

So true....I am enjoying this trip down history lane. Thanks so much!
Hugs and Merry Christmas

Diva Kreszl said...

a lovely history lesson...thanks! Spending time with loved ones is the best way to celebrate the Gift of our Saviour!!!

Mica said...

sounds like my kind of Christmas. Thanks again for the history. I didn't know this and now I do...tee hee...Love ya. Me

Mollye said...

Oh yes Patti, for a sweeter and simplier life for sure. Bet all those folks are gazing down at us in complete wonder and thinking, "now why do you suppose those silly folks think they need all those fandangled things to be happy". I swear that is one thing I wouldn't be too upset about our economy like it is if we all had to go back to "makin things and makin do". Happy Holidays and Blessings Galore my sweet friend, Mollye

Poetic Artist said...

Life must have been so much simplier and much more peaceful.

Fete et Fleur said...

The most wonderful thing about Christmas to me is the feeling in the air that anything is possible. Blessings to you and your family during this Christmas season.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for your informative post. I know it had to much happier and so much more beautiful because the stress levels were so low.
Merry Christmas my dear Friend.
Hugs, Darlene.. xo

Debbie said...

Very interesting post. I didn't know the girls were taught to knit at such a young age! Have a Merry Christmas and Blessed New Year!