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Capturing Christmas memories at the library

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By JULIE BALL HAMBRICK
Special to The Trimble Banner

Nearly 300 people attended a Trimble County Christmas at the Trimble County Public Library last Thursday. And although no pot-bellied stove was to be found, young and old gathered to bask in the warmth of Christmas past and present.

Barefoot Best Friends performed traditional holiday music, and guitarist Charlie Liston led the room in sing-along carols. A storyteller recalled one girlhood Christmas Eve growing up in the mountains. Children could take a butter-making lesson or meet one of Gwen and Warren Adcock’s twin female lambs. Staff members gave away stacks of books, and Santa Claus met his fans beside the fireplace.

The simple joy of the evening was the “memory event.” Earlier this fall, the library asked the community to contribute personal recollections of a favorite Christmas past. Many responded. Participants wrote down their own stories – some comical, some bittersweet, all touching – and library staff members read aloud their favorites at the conclusion of the night’s revelry.

Each tale begins the same: “I remember …”

Judy Wakefield recalled, “As a little girl, I only asked for one thing for Christmas: an xylophone. It cost $1. Now, ask me if I could play this beautiful instrument. I would say yes, but my brothers would say ‘absolutely not!’ Later on, the price of my instrument increased. My mother sat me down and explained ‘inflation.’ I told her I didn’t want an ‘inflation’ for Christmas, I just wanted an xylophone …”

Joyce Perkins remembered, “…Sometimes we didn’t have a lot of presents to open, but we always had different fruits and candies, shelled peanuts, chocolate drops. My dad would shell the peanuts … two peanuts, one orange slice, then one chocolate drop into the mouth, bit by bit. I can still remember the wonderful taste of it all mixed together.”

And Donald Kinman recollected,  “My best Christmas, I was 12 years old. We lived in the old (downtown Milton) school. My aunt bought me a cap rifle that looked like the one from ‘The Rifleman’ that was on TV. I ran from home down to the corner store and bought a box of caps. Started for home, and I tell you – no one was safe that day in Milton ‘cause I had plenty of caps!”

To read all the Trimble County Christmas memories, stop by the Kentucky Resource Room at the Trimble County Public Library.