Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I have such fond memories of my childhood Christmases. As I look back to Christmases past, the Christmases I spent as a child were the most fun and carefree. First, I was a child and need not bother about "preparing" for Christmas. Second, I was the youngest girl among my mother's side of the family- translate that to the most rotten spoiled brat- more gifts than the rest of the cousins. Not really. I was just being ...me.

I can still recall the wonderful smell of the pine tree set between the two houses in the compound. Back in those days, we don't use fake or plastic trees. We buy a real pine tree for the ban on the tree did not come until years later. There were no made in China or made in the Philippines Christmas decors then. Everything was made in USA. The exchange rate was $4 to 1 Php and the "in" PX (post exchange) stores then were located at Cartimar Market in Pasay city and Sta.Mesa Market in Manila. The "market"is equivalent to shopping center for Cartimar and Sta. Mesa were not wet markets. I remember buying PomPoms and M&M's for 35 centavos.

I don't know, but somehow Christmas mornings were cooler then. I recall the many December mornings when my mother insists I wear a sweater for the air was nippy. True. I used to watch my breath mist. My brother and I enjoyed talking just to see who "mists" big time. I love eating roasted chestnuts that Tiya Viring bought in Cartimar Market. Tiya Viring was my mother's single sister who lived with us. She had a big textile store in Divisoria and I thought she was the richest person my side of the universe. For me back then, Christmas was not Christmas without the pine tree and roasted chestnuts and the numerous gifts that came my way.
Posted by desperateblogger On 12/02/2008 07:04:00 PM 10 comments


  1. yes there are changes indeed. i love christmas too!

  2. Oh my I too have such fond memories of Christmas way back. But, much has changed now. Especially since all of our children are grown and gone.

    I miss string popcorn and cranberries with the kids on Christmas eve.

    Now it's usually just my hubby and myself but we still put up light s and a tree.

    We do our best to still have a good time!!:-)

  3. $4 to 1 peso? Whoa! That must have been ages ago. I remember when my Daddy used to work abroad, the exchange rate back then was $1 to 23 Php.

    But speaking of christmas, I also had beautiful memories of christmas especially in the Philippines. I love spending christmas there than here in the states. I may never had a real and fresh christmas tree in my life until I came here, but then....iba pa rin talaga sa Pinas! Walang christmas carol dito, hehe. :)

  4. carnation: there are a lot of changes in celebrating Christmas. some good, others bad. the one thing i don't like is the too commercialization of the season.

    shinade: i'm lucky (?) since all my kids are still with me. Christmas i still one big noisy affair. i think i'll miss the hullabaloo too when the kids start to have their own families.

    debbie/dana: well then, i'm pretty sure your dad remembers the $4 to 1 Php exchange rate. come to think of it even during martial law, exchange was at $8 to 1 Php. when cory quirino took over, the rate suddenly shoot up to $20. ummm.... bakit nga ba?

    no caroling there? seriously? but the pinoys got the practice of caroling from Americans!!!

    so, do you have your fresh pine Christmas tree up yet?

  5. I always look forward to every Christmas. May something na kakaiba during this season. Magaang ba yung pakiramdam. I get to see relatives as well na every Christmas lang nagpapakita.Hehe.Plus yung mood ng mga tao ay light. Plus the food. Sobrang pinoy style kami maghanda-meaning marami.Plus the gifts I still get until now.

  6. domjullian: sarap ng pasko sa pinas ano? kulang na lang snow. =)

  7. Hay memories....I don't remember the gasoline prices kasi ala kaming kotse but I do remember the dollar exchange rate because I have an aunt who used to send us some aginaldo...a dollar went a long long way then.

    I so miss Pasko in the Phils...


  8. 'uling: pasko is where your heart is. pero sa totoo lang, even if i have my immediate family with me, i still miss the Christmas of long ago.

  9. I'm sure you were talking about Cory Aquino, and not the other ex president?

    Opo, walang nangangaroling dito, boring nga eh.

    And yes, we have our fresh christmas tree up already since last Sunday. :)

    Nga pala, thanks alot for your kind words and thoughts about our little boy Daniel.

  10. debbie/dana: lol! cory aquino nga! what was i thinking? cory quirino is the granddaughter of pres.quirino.


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