Memories of Christmas Past

“TV’s broke.

Mommy wants a drier.

Christmas is coming

And the car’s on fire!”

These were the lyrics to a song, written by my parents and taught to their tiny children to sing one Christmas season. The song lives on in Malone lore.

The lyrics remind me of how hard their life was–raising four little kids in a three bedroom apartment while my Dad worked two jobs and Mom did everything else. These lyrics also remind me of how entertaining we all were to each other and to ourselves–how much fun we had together and could make out of thin air. Without electronics. These lyrics also remind me of my parents laughing together. Even in the face of disaster there was always laughter.

(TV’s broke) Having a broken TV was not so bad in itself. We had other ways of having fun–often in a five foot tall, ten foot diameter snow fort in the backyard and hot cocoa after to thaw us out in the kitchen. Or all of us on a long toboggan riding down the huge hill at Frear Park with nobody steering and everybody yelling “look out!”

(Mommy wants a drier) But with four little kids, you need a drier, right?

(Christmas is coming) With four little kids, the approach of Christmas is a very exciting time for the kids. But now, as parents ourselves, we can see the other side–the pressure on the parents to do it all, with or without sleep, money, energy or time, in order to actually manufacture the holiday, cheer and all.

(And the car’s on fire) With four little kids, it’s not so good if the car’s on fire, eh?



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