Holiday Memories

This is a reflection about the holidays that my sister, Stephanie Eretto (daughter to Sal Eretto) wrote recently.

This time of year always reminds me of family that I have lost, and how the holidays use to be when they were around. I can remember going to my Grandma Eretto’s house and having a four course meal beginning with her famous chicken noodle soup and ending with delicious italian cookies and coffee, as I sat at the table in my special spot right next to grandma and grandpa I would always notice the empty chair at the head of the table were my dad sat, sometimes it even felt like he was still there sitting with us, later after dinner we would open presents ,one Christmas she gave me a big puppy dog stuffed animal and my cousin helped me name him we named him cheese, I had an obsession with cheese at the time (and secretly still do), I will never forget my first shot of Kahlua, I was 13 and hanging out with grandma E and I saw a bottle in the cabinet and asked about it she told me it was Kahlua , “May I have some?’ I asked she said sure just do not tell your mother! So she pored us both a glass! she said we are celebrating our time together, and we did I celebrated every moment I had with her at the time my grandfather had recently past away and like my father he was a wonderful man I use to love to listen to him talk about some of the most interesting things, one conversation I had with him I will never forget he was sitting pondering the universe and how massive it is, and I asked “do you think there are other people out there?” he said to me ” if you think about it we are just a small part of the universe and the universe goes on and on forever so I think their could be others out there.” my 7 year old mind was blown wide open still to this day I think about it! During Christmas time I am always reminded of my father and how joyful he was, he would always sing Christmas song while playing the piano and everyone would feel a sense of happiness when he was around. Sometimes I wish I still felt his happiness when I start singing Christmas music (at the beginning of November) and ponder what it would be like to sing with him now that I’m older. On Christmas eve my Grandma Castle would put on these charismas plays our family was big, I have a lot of cousins! With each year she always had a good moral to every play, while we were rehearsing she would always say “lets do it nicely neatly and lovely” as a child I would always be like ok grandma we go this but, now as an adult I find my self telling my students, “when we do things we need to do them nicely neatly and lovely.” I wish I appreciated these words more as a child. Every time I say it I imagine her saying it to me. Although I would give anything to see or hear my late families voices again, I feel thankful that they were my family and I spent some memorable moments with each one of them. In my life I will always celebrate with my Grandma Eretto , explore the universe with my Grandfather, enjoy life to the fullest with my father and I will do it all nicely neatly and lovely just like grandma castle asked.

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