Monday, December 9, 2013

Not so historical anymore

Here is where I would regale you with tails from our weekend in great detail but seeing as how it's almost midnight and I've been staring at the page for a while, it's going to have to be the condensed version.  We started our Christmas tradition of counting the trees on top of cars on the road trip.

I think we got to 16 or 17.

We went to this Christmas village that we've been going to for 20 years.  It's one of those places that is supposed to be all historic like Williamsburg, Virginia and then as the years have passed, they've slowly destroyed everything that was wonderful about it.  Classes used to go on long field trips there and buy faux Declarations of Independence or civil war money.  There were old time food stores, general stores and art places with horseshoes, grave rubbings, dried herbs and such.  Now it's all been replaced with taverns, candy shops with modern candy wrapped up in plastic containers, upscale food stores that charge too much for their wares and high end ladies clothes shop for the Chico's crowd.  I can get that in my own hometown, I don't need to go to a no-longer-historical-historical town to fill that shopping bug.  It's just kind of depressing.  Every other year we swear we're not going back and then when that time rolls around again, we (I) get the hankering to go but I'm wondering if I'm wanting something that doesn't exist anymore.  Well, it exists for the five minutes of the ceremony where there's audience participation, I get warm and gooey inside and then we're outta there so we can get back on the road and not get home after midnight.

So I suppose we'll be searching out other possibilities for next year and deciding what to do from there.

Do you have any traditions that have lost their luster over the years?

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  1. So many places have gone that way. I can understand, business owners have to find a way to compete in today's marketplace and I'm sure modern candy, novelty gifts and high-end clothes are more lucrative that historically accurate "stuff". It does make me sad though, I don't want kids thinking that's how the early Americans lived.

    Every year we buy movie theater popcorn to go and then drive around looking at Christmas lights and eating popcorn. We went Saturday night and there were so few lights up that it was a pretty disappointing display. Even some of the houses that go all out weren't lit up this year. I don't know if they all had Saturday night plans and didn't plug in, or if they just didn't go to the effort this year. I'm just hoping next year will be back to normal.

  2. We have "Gardner Historic Village" near us, I've only been a couple of times, but it feels like you describe (with the modern, overpriced stores).

    For our family gatherings, for years we'd put on the nativity (I have a complete costume collection) but as the kids have gotten older and not wanting to participate it's become a complete pain. It was a little hard for some to let go of, but we have NOT done it the past couple years. There is the "candy bar game" which is another game I could definitely do without on Christmas Eve, but it's still going strong.

  3. We used to go shopping the day after Thanksgiving to a lot of craft shows. I was younger but I hated it. All those people and I couldn't touch anything. They had some nice stuff but when you're 12ish you're not interested in a $30 snowman made out of yarn. I'm so glad I don't do that now. I avoid stores the day after thanksgiving and try to be done with Christmas shopping before then. If you're looking for truly historic plan a trip to Montana...we've got historic everything but it will likely have a western theme. Best of luck trying to find a new tradition.

  4. I don't like the way most of those craft fairs and holiday villages have gone. I go and walk around every year, simply because it's pretty, but I rarely spend money there.

  5. Every Christmas Eve I would read Twas The Night Before Christmas under the tree. Then we had a couple of rough years and celebrating anything was just too painful. I've debated about it this year and the hubs tells me he wants me to do it, so I will. We used to do the whole Festival of Lights, which is a big to-do here through the park district, but it's gotten less and less every year with the companies that put on displays. But what we do like is we have always brought the dog/dogs every year and because you're basically idling with only the running lights on, the pooches get to stick their heads out the window to sniff the winter scenery.


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