Friday, December 8, 2006

Christmas Boat Parade

Are we all in the Christmas spirit yet?  This time of year provokes so many emotions on so many different levels; it’s hard to sort them out sometimes.  I start to miss family and friends I haven’t seen in what seems like forever.  I sit in quiet moments reflecting on Christmas Seasons past. 

I remember my mother, as I was growing up, always trying to provide us with a Christmas to remember for a lifetime.  She liked to get the tree up as early as possible and always tried to find something new to add to the decorations.  We would have holiday music on the stereo as we came home from school each day.  There was the planning of shopping excursions, lists being made, and something special always seemed to magically come out of the oven as we arrived.

I try and capture at least a little bit of that same feeling each year.  Time just seems to move faster as I grow older, though.  There doesn’t seem to be as many days now between Thanksgiving and Christmas Day as there used to be.  Did someone take some of those days off the calendar or did the world start turning faster? 

My mother was the type of person that liked to sing when she was happy in the kitchen.  Not by herself, but along with the radio when an old favorite would start to play.  As I got better on the guitar each year, I would pull out the Christmas sheet music and play while she puttered around singing to the tune I was playing.

Mother has been gone many years now, but every year I pull out the Christmas sheet music sometime around Thanksgiving and start practicing the old songs again.  This year has been no different.  It makes no matter that I am usually alone when I play the favored songs.  In my mind I am surrounded by family and good friends as we mangle our way through verse and note.  I still think about you Mom, and I still play our favorite songs.  God Bless You!

Christmas season on the waterfront is kicked off each year with a boat parade.  The boats are decorated like Christmas trees and, on the designated night, they motor by the viewing area in single file as each boat is judged for Most Creative, Best Overall Theme, Best Use of Lights, etc, etc… 

This was the first year our facility hosted the Thunderbolt Boat Parade, not to be confused with the Savannah Parade of Lights that was held the week before on the Savannah River.  This Parade is held yearly on the Wilmington River and meanders through the waterfront community of Thunderbolt and the surrounding area.  We really had a blast and will probably be hosting the event now for years to come.  I am not very experienced at using my camera in total darkness, so many of my shots did not come out at all and most are rather dim, but I put this collage together to give you the flavor or the event.

This next shot is one I took that afternoon because I did not think this little boat would show up very well in the darkness.  It does put a festive look to the little craft though, don’t you think?

Some of you asked about the crafts that Paulette created that were mentioned in my last post.  Her main endeavor this year has been with scented crystals.  It’s her thing, though and I am just on standby as chief gofer and bottle washer.  If she has any degree of success, you may hear more about this next year.

I’d like to end this on a lighter note and, in my attempt to get you into the Christmas spirit, I may just send you into a fit of laughter.  Let me just say now that I am not a professional singer.  This song I offer up as one of my favorite songs I used to sing with Mom in the kitchen chiming in.  Sister Jan and Cousin Lynn, if you are reading this and listening, I hope it evokes the same good memories for you as well.  Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas, J-land; I will be posting again before Christmas.  See you all then.

 

 

29 comments:

sieblonde said...

ok.. that's just plain awesome!~Sie

jeadie05 said...

In answer to your question are you ready for the spirit of Christmas ,after listening to your lovely rendition of Santa Claus is coming to town the answer has to be yes Sam that was really nice ,Thankyou ..love Jan xx

tenyearnap said...

I just shared your video with my eight-year-old son and he says you are "awesome!" We also enjoyed the boat photos because we have been living in Utah for the past year and miss the Atlantic coast and the parade of boats. We plan on moving back next summer but will make do with your great photos until then. Thanks for the fun!

stupidsheetguy said...

Sam, my friend, if I hadn't gotten some Christmas spirit before tonight, your entry sure did the trick. Hearing stories from Christmas past always seem to get it going for me.

Your musical rendition was terrific, and only served as a reminder that I need to pack up my own guitar when I head down your way some day soon. Maybe we can load up a duet for next Christmas!

Thanks for a typically great set of stories

Jim

ksquester said...

Sam, I am impressed!  Now I get to see you without your hat on!  Santa told me I would get more by being a bad girl........no wait, that was Doc......nevermind!   Anne  (p.s. jewelry pending)

nightmaremom said...

Wow!  That was great Sam and yeap it put me in the spirit without a doubt... you picked a great song.. nothing like fearing it was gonna be 'All I want for Xmas....'  LOL  Looking forward to more videos... and stories of Christmas' past
hugs
d

lurkynat said...

Dear Sam
thank you for this magical entry! I can imagine your mother singing as you played the guitar! how lovely!
hugs and Best Reguards
natalie

madcobug said...

I love this entry Sam, Your pictures of the parade of boats are beautiful. I would have loved to see all of them in person. That was a great walk down memory lane with your Mother. I loved your song and it did put me more into the spirit of Christmas. You did great.  Hope you and Paulette have a great one. Let's hear some more Christmas songs. Maybe Silent Night. Hugs, Helen

jeroldssis said...

Hi Sam...I thought you hadn't posted anything in months and come to find out it was just my RSS feed.  I fixed it and now I get your posts again.  Thank goodness because this was wonderful.  I loved reading about you and your mom.  The older I get the more precious memories become to me as well.  And you sing great!!  My 10 yr. old and 6 yr. old were impressed and sang along with you.  We are all definitely in the Christmas spirit now.  Thanks!

jlocorriere05 said...

Big round of applause! That was great Sam, you have a great voice! I can floor a rhino at two hundred paces with my voice so I really appreciate people who can sing in tune! I love those boats lit up too, I was taking pics like that last Sunday when I did a night cruise in Shanghai. Yours came out good. I hope you and Paulette have a lovely Christmas. Jeannette xx  http://beta.journals.aol.co.uk/jlocorriere05/Welcometomytravels/

rap4143 said...

Morning Sam!!!! Oncore please!!!!! Happy Holidays to you and your family.
Betty

memes121 said...

Ah Sam, what wonderful memories you brought out for me as well. Thank you. Merry Christmas friend! Tammy

onestrangecat said...

Never heard of a boat parade!  Beautiful!  Thanks for sharing the pictures.

I loved your video!  You have a nice soothing voice.  Thanks so much.

Hope the wife has much success with the scented crystals!

Kathy
http://journals.aol.com/onestrangecat/OneSummersDay/

my christmas journal:

ally123130585918 said...

Well Sam this has put me in the Christmas Spirit ~ I loved hearing your memories of Christmas when you were young ~ This time of the year always evokes happy memories especially of Christmas a very special time of the year to spend with family ~ and to remember those who are no longer with us ~ Love the pictures of the decorated boats ~ scented crystals sound lovely wish Paulette good luck in creating them ~ and hope she does well at the craft Fair next year ~ I loved your video you are a man of many talents ~ and singing is one of them ~ thankyou for sharing it with us ~ Ally

mutualaide said...

Sam!  Hi!  Yes, indeed ... you put me in the Christmas spirit!  Loved the boat parade and gee, I haven't been to watch one in ages.  MUST put that on my list of 'to do's' for next year.  I do plan on being here then ... LOL.  

Thanks for the song.  You may not be Elivs, but you aren't shabby either!  

inafrnz247 said...

::smile::

So many gifts you share!  You have a wonderful voice ~ Thanks for that little piece of Christmas spirit!

I had just recently heard of the Christmas Boat Parades.  The photos came out very nice.  Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and many blessings for the New Year.

Michelle

pharmolo said...

Well done, Sam, great performance. And thanks for sharing the memories of Christmas past. Have a great time this year.

Guido

coloneljan said...

What wonderful memories!  The song was wonderful and certainly evoked happy memories!!  I enjoy family so much and miss that my family isn't near me--scattered all over the  country.  YOu made the memorise palpable, and I thank you!

slbourgoyne said...

I had to cry just a little.  Thanks so much.  I miss all of you so.  I've been thinking of some of the old times a lot lately.  The summers and holidays that we were together.  I wish that our parents could have known our little ones.  Can you imagine Andrew and William with them.  Daddy would have been so proud of Andrew playing chess at 6 and Momma would have had such a laugh at William's antics.  Love you, Lynn

onemoretina said...

Season's Greetings, Sam,   Wow, am I impressed.  That was lovely.  How come we didn't know about your talent before now ?  Beautiful ... you put me in the holiday mood.  Now I am off to wrap and bake and finally get those cards written.  I wish you all the best, my friend ... and keep on singing!  xx  Tina

chatzeekay said...

oh this is very nice indeed great vocice you put yourself out there,,
HATS OFF TO YOU<<<<<<<<<<<< greta  voice, nice pics great entry thanks for sharing.
http://journals.aol.com/chatzeekay/LifeandLessons/entries/2006/12/06/ramble/979

gravydogg55 said...

 TO GABOATMAN,
                            THANKS FOR YOUR COMMENT ON MY PHOTO OF THE SKY OPENING UP. IT WAS NEAR SUNDOWN AND UNEXPECTED.
    BEST KEEP A CAMERA READY IN EVENT OF SEEING ANOTHER U F O.
         AMONG MANY GOOD MEMORIES OF THE PAST, PERHAPS THE FAVORITES ARE OF DEAR OLD MOTHER LOVING US FROM BABYHOOD ON.
   BEAUTIFUL RED HAIR, WAIST LENGTH EXCEPT MOST TIMES KEPT IN A LARGE BUN. DURING MY EARLY YEARS MOTHER DID WASHINGS ON A 'SCRUB BOARD'. COOKED ON A WOOD BURNING KITCHEN RANGE, LARGE HOOD ABOVE TO KEEP THINGS WARM.
    COULD DRIVE A TEAM OF HORSES PULLING A WAGON OR BOBSLED. COULD SHOOT A SAGE HEN THROUGH THE HEAD AT 20 PACES OR MORE, THEN HAVE IT PREPARED FOR THE EVENING MEAL WHEN DAD CAME IN FROM THE FIELD.
      I WAS AMONG THE FEW THAT NEVER DEVELOPED A SINGING VOICE. AS YOU WROTE IN A RECENT ENTRY YOUR MOTHER ENJOYED SINGING, SO DID MY MOTHER AND WHISTLED A LOT AND HUM WHEN USING THE TREDDLE SEWING MACHINE. SHE HELD HER LOWER JAW SIDEWISE WHEN HUMMING AND SMILED HAPPILY WHEN I IMITATED HER.
   I ATE SO MUCH OF HER BAKED AND SPICED PUMPKIN THAT I TURNED TO A YELLOWISH TINT, MY OLDER SISTERS TELL ME.   DEAR OLD MOTHER.   sam

csandhollow said...

Thank you so much! I did enjoy hearing your wondeful voice.
Scented crystals? as in bath crystals?

paulmcs said...

Sam, you could never play in my old Traveling Pillsburys band...you're too good, you'd throw us all off. We watched the lighted boat parade from a restaurant table in Newport, RI, last weekend. Merry Christmas to you and yours.

jeroldssis said...

Back again...! My kids wanted to hear you sing again.  They love it!  Okay, me too.  ;)  
Chris
http://itsallaboutmeithink.blogspot.com

donejustwrite said...

Sam, that was an absolutely WONDERFUL entry!  I could read the love in your words as you wrote about your mom...  I hope my son has fond memories of me like that...  And I think your rendition of "Santa Claus is coming to Town" was just lovely!  I think I just heard recently that Gene Autry wrote that.  He was in a parade waving to the crowd & realized no one was paying ANY attention to him, because behind him was Santa Claus and the crowd was exclaiming, "Santa Claus is coming!  Santa Claus is coming!"  

Merry Christmas to you & Paulette!!!

sistercynthiadr said...

A merry, merry Christmas to you and yours!

childebrand1968 said...

I'm gonna have to reload your journal to hear your song!  

But, even not hearing it yet, I can tell (just from the story you wrote), that I'm more likely to cry than to laugh....  Its the thought you provoked~the memories.

I, too, relive old Christmas times past in my head.  And I can only hope that, years from now, my Gracie will be remembering our Christmas' with her own children  :)

Love the lit up boats.  How divine that would be to see live, in color!  You know I'm envious ;)

Am also more curious about Paulette's crafts now~scented crystals?  How does she get them scented  (showing my novice-ness in getting rocks to smell good... LOL)  You know I am a curious Cat  :)

It's Christmas Eve Eve, and if you don't get back her~Merry Christmas to you both and best wishes for the New Year!

Love ya, my friend...

Cat

lurkynat said...

Dear Sam and Pauline, those boats look prettire and nicer the second time! Merry Christmas! love,natalie