Confession: my favourite part of Christmas is the stockings.
I know, I know, there are a billion other things about Christmas that might be more amazing, or louder, or brighter, or have more feeling to it, but the thing is, after years and years of retail, it’s the stockings that I still loved on Christmas morning.
See, part of it is simple: Stockings were done in bed. So I didn’t have to get up yet, I could relax still, in my jammies, have a cup of tea in bed, and sit there with my husband and unwrap stockings. When you’ve been pulling “leave the house before 6:00am and get home some time after 6:00pm” for anywhere up to twelve days in a row leading up to Christmas, you really, really, love that morning lie-in, let me tell you.
Second, they’re often silly, or cute, or an indulgence, or sweet, or fun, or a mix of all three. A paperback book, some candy, soap, a puzzle, a mug… You never know what awesome little thing might come out of a stocking. Even when practical—like, say, socks—they’re somehow all the more fun because you’re sitting on your bed and you’re both taking turns opening little presents and the paper is piling up between you. It’s also something you get to do right away, before you have to drive to meet up with the rest of the family, before you have to get dressed and have breakfast…
Maybe it’s just me, but the whole cozy, silly, sweetness of it all is why I still loved it, even when the rest of the joy of the season had been stamped under the boot heel of retail.
It was why I introduced stockings to my in-laws (it was something they didn’t do) and we continue to do them to this day. I just finished stuffing their stockings today. Some years it’s more challenging than others, but I like the hunt. Or at least, I do when it goes well. It went well this year, so I enjoyed it.
What about you? Do you do stockings for your holidays? Are there rules? A specific time to open them?
5 thoughts on “Stuffin’!”
When I was a lad (sometime in the middle of the previous century), we opened our stockings on St. Nicholas Day, December 6th. It was one of the two times during the year when my sisters and I would get candy. (The other was Easter. We weren’t allowed to go tick-or-treating on Halloween.) The most fun part was getting an orange and a candy cane. We would roll the orange vigorously between our hands, eat the curve off the candy cane, then stick the sharp end into the orange. After some cheek-clenching sucking, you’d get a steady stream of peppermint-flavored orange juice drawing up through the candy cane like a straw. At any other time of the year, this flavor would be disgusting. On St. Nicholas day, it was magic.
That’s awesome. 🙂 There was always an orange in our stockings when I lived in the UK, too.
Here in the U.S., we always left our stockings out for Santa to fill them, usually with oranges, bags of nuts and other goodies. When I was a teenager, I was “too old” for that, but still put out the stocking every year, even got a few comic books (which I’d helped Santa pick out!)
Ooh, comic books are a great idea for stockings.
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