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Season's Greetings from Deep Valley!

      
        Deep Valley Sun

 

   December 2014 Holiday Edition

 

Season's Greetings!

From the BTS President

The Betsy-Tacy Society extends our thanks to you for your generous response to our recent fundraising campaign and all support throughout the years. Warmest wishes for a Happy Holiday Season from Deep Valley.
 


A Visit From Santa Claus

By Joan Brown, Betsy-Tacy Society past board member
joanbrown@frontier.com

 
It was Christmas Eve in Mankato, and back in the 1930s the weather was predictably snowy and cold. This Christmas Eve was no exception. The sidewalks were cleared of snow, but the streets were still packed with the banks made by the plows going through. The night sky was brilliant with stars, and my sisters and I were bundled up in snowsuits and scarves and mittens. Mother wore her faithful black seal fur coat, daddy was in his winter overcoat and felt hat, and we all carried presents in our wooly arms. We were on our way to Uncle Strom’s house where he and his family awaited us.
 
We lived on Fulton Street, they on Record, so it was a short walk, but we were all glad to get there and inside where my cousins, all older than I, were waiting for us. Uncle Strom had a fire in the fireplace, and Aunt Karen had a Swedish meal prepared. It was a traditional Christmas Eve meal of lutefisk in a white sauce, boiled potatoes, Swedish sausage she and my mother had made with a group of friends from the Ladies Aid, then frozen at the Mankato Creamery, later to be simmered and served with rye bread dipped in a savory broth. There was also herring, and for dessert, fruit soup and pepparkakor. I was only four years old, and was much more interested in the presents under the tree than in the meal. But, of course, there was no departing from the family habits mother and her sister as well as my dad and uncle had brought with them from Sweden and Norway.
 
After the meal, served and eaten in a leisurely fashion, we gathered about the tree. Chairs had been drawn up close to the fire, and the lights turned off with the exception of one lamp near Uncle’s chair. The adults gathered about, we children on the floor. I was impatient with the suggestion that we sing a few carols before we opened the presents, but knew that it would be inappropriate to make such a suggestion. So I contented myself with wondering which packages were mine and wondering if the large one at the back might be the Shirley Temple doll I had been hoping for.
 
We sang the carols; the adults sang the Swedish ones first, “Santa Lucia” and “Nu ar det Jul igen.” Then my cousins started talking about some strange noise outside… someone knocking? They were giggling and nudging one another, but since they were boys and loved to tease, I didn’t pay much attention. I was entirely focused on the presents. Finally the moment had come. My mother’s name was called first, and she opened her gift of a lunch-cloth embroidered by her sister-in-law with napkins to match. Then it was my name drawn, and as I waited for the package to be handed to me, someone entered the room. I turned to see a roly-poly figure dressed in a red suit, wearing a red stocking hat, and carrying a large bag. This figure spied me staring at him, mouth open, eyes wide and asked, “And what’s your name, little girl? Have you been good this year?” I was terrified and was certain that he knew all about my shortcomings, the time I spanked the dog, or when I threw water on the cat, or when I had refused to go to bed at bedtime. I said nothing, but ran to my dad’s side. I figured it was all over, and I wasn’t going to get any presents and my failings would be known to all.
 
Everyone started to laugh, and I was finally persuaded to come over and shake hands with Santa. I left dad’s side and stepped closer to the man in red who now seemed less threatening and somehow familiar, but I didn’t know who he was.
 
Some years later, when I was nine, and no longer believed in Santa Claus, I asked my dad about that Christmas Eve, and who was the man dressed up as Santa. “Why, that was Mr. Lloyd. You remember him; he lived across the street from the Stroms and loved to play Santa. Nice man, Mr. Lloyd. Jab Lloyd was his name.”
 
 

 

Betsy & Tacy Go Christmas Shopping

 
© Illustration by Lois Lenski/HarperPerennial
 

Ten Great Gifts from the BTS Gift Shop!

 
       1.  The Betsy-Tacy books  
 

New Release!

Collected Stories of Maud Hart Lovelace and Delos Lovelace

18 published short stories written by Maud and Delos Lovelace between the years 1911-1927. Original illustrations and magazine covers included. 

"Having watched other collaborators getting into each other's hair and on each other's nerves, we have reached the conclusion that happy collaborations, like happy marriages, are made in heaven."   ~Maud Hart Lovelace




Praises for Collected Stories Volume 2

"I received the Lovelace short stories today and can't wait to start reading this second volume treasure. The "Editor's Note" is fabulous and I learned more about Delos from it than previous minimal information I have found. It gave me goose bumps to read his own words. He had quite a sense of humor and seemed to be a humble man."

"As with everything Julie Schrader has published, the "feel," look, and quality is first rate. The original illustrations are so crisp and I love the inclusion of the original magazine dated covers as was done for volume one. Thank you Julie for making these short stories available to us and gathering them in such beautiful packages."
~A. Kase, Crystal, MN


 

Join us in Deep Valley this Season

Betsy-Tacy Victorian Christmas

Experience an Old-Fashioned Christmas! Costumed characters will represent Betsy and her family at Betsy's House, December 6th and December 13th.

Gather round the piano as Christmas carols are played at Betsy's House, where the Hart family sang by the firelight and Christmas tree candlelight.

Visit Tacy's House for holiday shopping to fill Christmas stocking, including homemade candy gifts from our Candy Shoppe, special gift baskets, and buy an ornament for a dime, just as Betsy, Tacy, Tib, and Winona did in "Betsy and Tacy Go Downtown" while enjoying Christmas Cookies, Hot Chocolate and Candy Canes.


Admissions taken at Tacy's House

Fees:
$5.00     Adults
$2.00     Ages 6-16
Free       5 & under

Celebrate 25 Days of Christmas

Check out Betsy-Tacy's Deep Valley blog for a special holiday message on the 25 days leading up to Christmas!

Click here for a daily holiday message!

 
 

The Night Before Christmas
By Clement C. Moore
Illustrated by Cheryl Harness (Betsy-Tacy Society member)

 

The Night Before Christmas

 "The Night Before Christmas" was a Christmas tradition in the Hart [Ray] home.
"They gathered around the fire with Margaret in the circle of her father’s arm, and Betsy read from Dickens’ “Christmas Carol,” the story of the Cratchit’s Christmas Dinner. Margaret recited, “’Twas the Night Before Christmas,” and Julia read the story of Jesus’ birth out of the Book of Luke. Later they turned out the lights to fill one another’s stockings which were hung around the fireplace.

~Quote from Heaven to Betsy




 

$8.99 at BTS Gift Shop
Click to Purchase

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