12 Days of Christmas Giveaways, Day 4

November 4, 2015 | By | Comments (31)
Photo credit: Laurey W. Glenn

Photo credit: Laurey W. Glenn

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love (or Southern Living!) gave to me, a holiday made bright. Add subtle touches of the season to your porch. Flank the steps with candlelit lanterns or electric-lit presents for an overall warm glow.

For more holiday decor ideas and tips, enter to win the 2015 Southern Living for Dillard’s Christmas Cookbook PLUS a $50 Dillard’s gift card to purchase your favorites from our holiday collection.

100% of proceeds when you buy a Christmas Cookbook go to support the Ronald McDonald House Charities. Photo credit:

100% of proceeds when you buy a Christmas Cookbook go to support the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

How to Enter: Tell us your favorite holiday memory. Comment your answer below for a chance to win. Official rules here


  1. Teresa Gainey Mode

    My favorite Christmas memory was the year my dad gave me my high school ring. Christmas morning my ring was not under the tree. He explained that they could not afford to get my ring but they would get it when they could. A could minutes later he had me go get something out of his coat pocket. When I reached into his coat pocket there was a small package. When I took it to him he told me to open it and inside was my ring.

    December 15, 2015 at 11:04 am
  2. Phyllis Sears

    The first Christmas for my son who is now 39; we carried on the tradition from my family of reading the Christmas Story before going to bed; so many memories of Christmases past

    November 7, 2015 at 11:57 am
  3. Holly Cline

    I must have been about 10 years old when my dad surprised my mother with a much needed “new” car. Our family of six had been riding in Chevy Chevette for a long time and my dad surprised my mother with a new to us station wagon with a giant red bow on top.

    November 5, 2015 at 8:51 am
  4. Dawn K

    Christmas Eve every year, tradition for my family

    November 5, 2015 at 4:19 am
  5. Tana McCraw

    Each Christmas my family gathered at my grandparents. My aunts, uncles, and cousins from VA, IN, MS, and other parts of WV came in and it was grand! There were sixteen cousins at that time (four more in years to come). The family room in the basement filled wall to wall with sleeping bags with excited kids. On Christmas Eve after dinner, one of the adults donned a Santa suit and jogged around the outside of the house to shrieks of delight from the kids inside. Keeping us down for the night was difficult so most Christmas mornings started around 5:30 – 6 am. Once we even had a beautiful Santa in the living room setting out bags of candy and he said, “oops, you caught me!” And then he quickly left – it was magical. My grandmother swore she didn’t know who it was, must have been Santa.

    November 4, 2015 at 10:53 pm
  6. becky evans

    Each Christmas morning, my parents would enthusiastically get my brothers, sisters and me out of bed (we were already awake with anxiety and anticipation), take us to the living room and point out who gets what. We dared not open our eyes or got up on our own for fear that if Santa saw us looking as he distributed the gifts, he would spit in our eyes. They would marvel at the number of “Oh Golly” they heard as each of us saw our one $1.99 unwrapped gift. They then gave themselves Invisible pats on the back for a job well done. But my seven years old Christmas was different. It made me realized that Santa was really real. Anyone could come down the chimney and deposit toys, nuts and candy under a Christmas tree. But only Santa could be responsible for what took place.
    That Christmas morning, Dad was the only parent who was involved in our traditional routine. After all of the “Oh Golly’ and his invisible pat on the back, he announced “Now I want y’all to come and see what else Santa brought you”. He led my 5 brothers, 2 sisters and me to their bed where my mom was lying, pulled back the cover and said “Santa Claus brought you a baby brother.” There was much excitement in the room. It was like “Santa, you really did it this time!” For the next 2 years, there was nothing anyone could say to convince me that Santa fail to exist. My logic told me that since there was no child in our house when we went to bed, Santa had to place the baby in Mom and Dad’s bed. He was not born during the early morning hours on Christmas day; but instead, brought down the chimney along with the toys, fruit, nuts and candy from the North Pole.
    Now I am much, much older, far wiser, know about midwives, have lost both my mother and father and do not see eye-to-eye with my brother. However, deep down in my heart, I know that my favorite Christmas memory proves that the song with the lyrics “Mommy is Santa, Daddy is Claus” is true and that Santa Claus actually did bring me my baby brother.

    November 4, 2015 at 10:37 pm
  7. floridagld

    Gosh so many but two are most special or three..first as a young girl in Florida going out and cutting down our own little trees..amazing it was possible. Two, was the year my parents were struggling and mom some how managed to buy me a coat we saw together when shopping. It was the only gift and I was so shocked and happy. I still have it and it is now vintage but classic.
    Lastly, several years ago..was my last Christmas with my mom and the whole family..a very special Christmas indeed..bittersweet as she was very sick.. and then dad went soon there after. But I have that last Christmas with everyone together to cherish.

    November 4, 2015 at 9:36 pm
  8. kim t

    first Christmas for all of my kids!

    November 4, 2015 at 9:35 pm
  9. Julie

    My favorite holiday memory is watching “White Christmas” with my cousins and grandparents. My cousin and I would sing and dance to the song “sisters” wishing we were really sisters! Our moms are twins and I’ve been told they did the same song and dance routine when they were younger. My cousin and I are now grown up, but will still jump at the chance to perform the “sisters” song together and never pass up an opportunity to watch “White Christmas” during the holiday season!

    November 4, 2015 at 9:12 pm
  10. rocketcitysaver

    The first year I made presents for everyone

    November 4, 2015 at 9:08 pm
  11. Nicole Vosburgh

    Christmas Eve 2005 when my little brother was born!

    November 4, 2015 at 8:27 pm
  12. Maureen

    Growing up we would pick out of a hat the name of the person we would buy a present for. I come from a large family and therefore it would have been costly to purchase for everyone. My grandmother picked one of my brothers. This brother does not care for peas and other food items. She wrapped every thing so nicely that he was sure he was getting a great gift. It turned out to be about 20 different food items that he did not like at all. He was like great but then she really had a pair of tickets to a concert he wanted to go to as his real gift.

    November 4, 2015 at 8:22 pm
  13. Lisa Christopher Grimes

    Always waiting until Daddy made sure that Santa had lit the tree before we were allowed downstairs to see all of our gifts on display around the room. It looked like Santa’s workshop or a toy store.

    November 4, 2015 at 8:13 pm
  14. Laura

    Going to my grandmother’s house as a child, where my extended family would gather to play cards and dominoes, sing songs around the piano, and eat delicious food.

    November 4, 2015 at 6:48 pm
  15. Susan Hatcher

    My favorite memory is when I was a newlywed and my grandma came to visit at Christmas and helped me bake cakes. I always cherish those memories. She is in Heaven now.

    November 4, 2015 at 4:34 pm
  16. Anna Bennett

    I lived in New Mexico in my 20’s and had a low level job that required me to work Christmas Eve. But like a good southerner I was determined to get home for Christmas. I took an afternoon flight through Dallas that got delayed and had me into Atlanta at Midnight. My 85 year old Grandmother and Aunt drove 2 hours to the airport AFTER hosting the family Christmas Eve dinner to make sure I was home for Christmas morning. When I got in the car at the curb, my elderly aunt remarked “there’s nobody out here! We could be terrorists with a bomb and nobody would even see us” With that we sped away before anyone overheard and got home in the wee hours where my grandmother pulled some whisky out of the pantry and offered us all a round. “I didn’t start drinking until my 80’s but I had this left over from my fruitcake and I’ve found that it helps me sleep.” With that we all slumbered peacefully home at last.

    November 4, 2015 at 3:02 pm
  17. margaretc2014

    I swear this is true! One Christmas I snuck out of my bedroom and I SAW Santa flying over the fields! I did, I did!

    November 4, 2015 at 2:22 pm
  18. clmdukes

    My favorite holiday memory is actually the traditions that occurred every year such as Christmas Eve light supper then to the midnight candlelight service and gift exchange plus Christmas morning country ham brunch!!!

    November 4, 2015 at 2:09 pm
  19. Lynn Welch

    Since I was born and raised in the South, my favorite Christmas memory involves a shotgun and firecrackers. I was around nine years old, so my brother would have been eight. On this Christmas Eve in 1962, merrymakers enjoyed riding slowly down the dirt road on which we lived and tossing firecrackers out of the car windows. The combination of noise and Christmas Eve made sleeping difficult. So my brother and I kept sneaking out of our rooms to meet in the hall, where we discussed who would go into the living room to see if Santa had made his appearance. We thought we were whispering, but we woke our dad, who threatened great bodily harm to us if we didn’t go to our respective rooms and stay there. Of course, we went to our rooms, but couldn’t resist getting up one more time. At the exact moment we got up, the merrymakers rode by our house and tossed more firecrackers. Dad, who cut an imposing figure at 6’8″ tall, jumped out of bed and grabbed his shotgun — to scare the merrymakers we later found out. But Bob and I thought he was after us. (Now Dad was not a violent man, and he had not threatened to kill us. But we thought we may have pushed him over the edge.) We hightailed it to our beds and stayed there the rest of the night. In fact, it was well after daybreak before we dared get up. We laughed about our close call for years. My brother died in 1986, so the memory is mine alone now. And I never go to bed on Christmas Eve without thinking of that Christmas Eve in 1962.

    November 4, 2015 at 1:09 pm
  20. karen s

    My favorite Christmas memory would have to be from my childhood. Each Christmas Eve, my Dad would take us driving around in our pajamas to look at the lights. Oh it was so much fun!

    November 4, 2015 at 12:58 pm
  21. Holly F

    My first Christmas with kids of my own to get presents for

    November 4, 2015 at 12:47 pm
  22. Discover Southern (@discoversouthrn)

    Reading “The Night Before Christmas” each and every Christmas Eve!

    November 4, 2015 at 12:44 pm
  23. leslie

    I have so many fond memories it is hard to pick just one. I always attend Christmas Eve service, and I love when we light the candles to exit the church and sing Silent Night. I have fond memories of my son growing up, and playing Santa. I have childhood memories of when I got my first bike, and had to ride in a circle in the garage because I had chicken pox.

    November 4, 2015 at 12:20 pm
  24. Kathleen

    Going to Midnight Mass, singing Christmas Carols & seeing the Nativity scene.

    November 4, 2015 at 11:56 am
  25. Janice Gallaway

    Every year is the best year because you get to spend it with family and friends, eat marvelous food, see the excitement in the children’s eyes and treasure the time spent with all of those you love.

    November 4, 2015 at 11:29 am
  26. Linda Haley

    When I was ten, I had a serious case of puppy love but no dog in sight. I had exhausted my family with my pleas, plans and bargainings. The morning of Christmas Eve our neighbor called to tell me she had a gray kitten in a basket and would I be interested. When my parents said no, I pitched quite a fit in my disappointment and likely soured our day. The next morning, there was a string attached to a note in my stocking that went out the window on a hunt that culminated in the basement where a precious Heniz 57 puppy was waiting. I “creatively”named him Blackie and he was my best friend for 10 years. I remember this whole scenario anytime God appears to give me a big unwanted no. Even with my poor responses, He is often just waiting to fulfill my prayers and will eventually open a window,

    November 4, 2015 at 11:15 am
  27. Kim Foster

    My favorite memory is of going to the midnight Christmas Eve service each year while I was growing up. The choir would sing the Hallalujah Chorus at the stroke of midnight.

    November 4, 2015 at 10:42 am
  28. Nancy Beaird

    Christmas near the Kruger Park in South Africa, singing traditional carols, not in a sleigh in the snow, but in a safari vehicle in the warm summer, moonlit night – unforgettable!

    November 4, 2015 at 10:33 am
  29. Cindy Moline

    We were stationed in Germany, my children were still pretty young, and they were very excited to visit the Christmas Markets. It seemed that almost every village had one, but the really wonderful ones were in the larger cities. They were like fairy villages, and the children loved them (so did I).

    November 4, 2015 at 10:10 am
  30. Sharon K

    Our children were 5 and 7; we traveled from Norman, OK to St. Augustine, FL, to spend Christmas with my parents. Our daughter was sure Santa would not be able to find us as we were not home for Christmas AND Grandma and Grandpa didn’t have a chimney. I had packed their smaller gifts, we had shipped out their larger gifts, and my folks picked up the rest for me. The looks on their faces when they woke up Christmas morning was priceless. Twenty years later, I still remember that morning like it was yesterday. 🙂

    November 4, 2015 at 9:59 am
  31. AngelaS

    We celebrated our parents 50th anniversary (Dec. 24) on a holiday cruise. It was the last trip our family would be able to take together and something my mother had on her wish list for 25 years or so.

    November 4, 2015 at 9:10 am

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