American Small Town Christmas – Ya Gotta Love It!

Christmas is only a couple days away. Every year it seems to come faster and faster. I still remember all the joy, excitement, and suspense that the season brought when I was a child. I also remember watching my daughter experiencing the same thing when she was little. And though we all eventually grow up, Christmas helps us to capture back a little of that childhood wonderment that we leave behind as we grow up.

Maybe I’m feeling a litttle nostalgic because the Polar Express is playing in the background. Or maybe because Santa is riding around my home town on a brightly decorated fire engine. I tried to capture a picture of it as it came down my street but I am lousy with nighttime photos and this is what I ended up with.

Well it’s sort of a pretty blur. Anyway, after Santa and his flashing Oaklyn firetruck left, I could have kicked myself because I forgot that my camera takes video too. But the Christmas spirit was looking down on me and a few minutes later good old Santa was heading my way. I grabbed my camera and caught the following:

As I write this post, I can still hear the sirens of Santa’s fire engine as he rides around town, smiling and waving and tossing candy canes to all the good kids. Yes, this is small town America at it’s best. And I am so happy and proud to be a part of it. Merry Christmas to everyone and a very happy and properous New Year, too!


70 thoughts on “American Small Town Christmas – Ya Gotta Love It!

  1. Keeper of the Skies Wife says:

    That is too cool!! I love that the fireman did that!! It makes me want to be a child when I see things like this! Only in a small town indeed.

  2. Kat says:

    How cool that your town is so small that Santa does that! We saw Santa this morning. At the mall. And waited about an hour in line. Not because there were a lot of people…but because the person that takes the pictures was running late. And they wouldn’t let us see Santa without charging us for pictures. Welcome to suburbia and mass consumerism 🙂

  3. Heather says:

    The (small, NJ) town where my nephews live does Santa on the fire truck each year too, and my nephews LOVE it. (They’re 4.5 and 2.) My sister and BIL tell us each year about the big excitement, but seeing the video makes it much easier to picture – thanks for catching that and posting it!

    I wish you and yours a very, very merry Christmas and all the best for 2009!

  4. Erin, Nick and Merrick says:

    We had a fireenginge santa as well!
    But I thought there was a gang war or a bomb scare due to hearing sirens for 45 minutes straight!
    Guess I am too neurotic for small-town Christmas!

  5. Rachael says:

    Love all the small town things like Santa on a Fire Engine 🙂 Those are the things we remember as we get older and very nostalgic! Have a great Christmas and fabulous New Year!

  6. Preston says:

    Keeper of the Skies Wife – Yea, it’s totally cool. I felt like a little kid as he drove by waving.

    Kat – It is one of the benefits of living in a small town. (Although my small town is only 10 minutes away from Philadelphia, which is also great) Mall Santas come sometimes be a hassle but at least the kiddies get to see him.

    Wheremyangels – Merry Christmas to you too!

    Heather – I bet your nephews love it. When people with kids come out of their houses, Santa stops and talks to the kids and hands out candy canes. How cool is that? I’m glad you got to see what it’s like for you nephews. And a very Merry Christmas to you and your family.

    Erin, Nick and Merrick – It’s funny you said that. When I first heard the engines I thought, “Oh, no. A fire right before Christmas!” But then I saw him coming down the street. Whew.

    Rachael – Yes, it’s nice to live in a community that helps foster such warm and wonderful holiday memories!

  7. Dave says:

    That’s freaking awesome! The only time we get stuff like that around here because is for our 4th of July parade on our block. Other than that, they are just too busy. I’d rather have your display 🙂

    Christmas has always been a little bittersweet for me as Christmas Eve was my dad’s birthday; he’s been gone over 30 years now. All I know is he loved the holidays and seeing the joy that they bring to my son takes away the pain of the past. It looks like Mom won’t be home from the hospital by the 25th so it’ll be the first time ever I’ve been without both parents. Kind of sucks, but I’ve got my family to share the joy with.

    And Happy Christmas and New Year to you! I’ll be back to blogging once everything settles down. Just been relaxing lately with everything happening so quickly.

  8. mongoliangirl says:

    Sa-WEET! I love small town Christmas stuff. The small town closest to us has a drive through holiday light fest at the park. It’s about the ugliest display I’ve ever seen…and I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

  9. Preston says:

    Dave – Yes, as we get older sometimes Christmas brings on bittersweet memories. I’m sorry about your mom but I am sure you will have a wonderful Christmas with your family. Ho! Ho! Ho!

    Mongoliangirl – That is so funny about your local holiday light fest. I hope you have a wonderful holiday!

  10. koopermom says:

    I love living in a small town for reasons just like this. I hate it for other reasons, like no restaurants, and bad cell phone service! But in the end, it’s pretty great.

  11. Rebecca Jo says:

    I have never watched Polar Express… heard so much about it – gotta watch it!

    And I too love Small town America – good to have a “neighborhood” feel with people!

    Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

  12. White Iris Designs says:

    Hey Preston..thanks for stopping by my blog & leaving me your thoughts!! Yeah..I love the bookcases too. We use to have that picture window there with two side windows…replaced & I wanted a built in to utilize other wise wasted space. Besides I needed a place to put all of my hand painted dishes!
    Merry Christmas..come back for a visit sometime!

  13. Nana says:

    Thanks Preston. I am glad you you appreciated the poem. Yes sometimes we forget others are mourning during this season. I love the Fire Engine. Merry Christmas to you too.

  14. What A Card says:

    Oh my, my kids would love that…Santa, Christmas lights, and a fire truck all rolled into one? Genius!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog…Merry Christmas right back to you!

  15. antibloggedy says:

    I miss that sort of thing. I am in a big city now and don’t get that. When I was home (in Hawaii) They used to have Santa Paddle to the beach in a canoe. He would drop off the presents from a sack in the canoe. It was AWESOME….”Ahhh The memories” Thanks for stopping by.

  16. Preston says:

    Heathersister – Thank you and right back atcha.

    Taylor – Happy Holidays to you too…thanks.

    Koopermom – That’s why it’s great to live in a small town that is very close to a big town. I’m 10 minutes from Philly but still get all the small town benefits.

    Rebecca Jo – You so have to watch Polar Express! You will love it. Thanks and have a wonderful Christmas too.

    White Iris Designs – Oh, I’ll definitely come back. I can’t resist a woman with great bookcases! Happy Holidays!

    Nana – Thanks for stopping by. The fire truck was fun.

    Tara – Glad you liked seeing a glimpse of my small town!

    What a card – The kids here absolutely eat it up. It’s so much fun.

    Kalei – Wow. Santa paddling in a canoe is not one I’ve heard before. Glad I was able to “stoke” those memories. 🙂

    Tutu’s Bliss – It sure is fun. Merry Christmas too!

  17. Dee from Downunder says:

    we live in a smallish town too, one santa arrived at an event in a side car of a motorbike. Fire engines are much more exciting though!

    Hope you and your family have a great christmas.

  18. Em says:

    The town we used to live in did the Fire Truck Santa thing – I miss it!! So wonderfully down home Americana.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours!

  19. nikkicrumpet says:

    I think small town America is the most beautiful place on earth. I’m glad you get to enjoy it! Thanks for the Holiday wishes. I hope your family has a wonderful Christmas and a very happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!

  20. Preston says:

    Dee from Downunder – Hey, the Santa in a side car is a pretty original idea but the firetruck makes more noise. LOL

    Eudea-mamia – It is wonderfully down home Americana!

    Angie – Thanks for stopping by during your busy schedule. Merry Christmas!

    Nikkicrumpet – It’s nice. Especially during the holidays! 🙂

  21. BoufMom9 says:

    We too were visited by Santa on the fire engine. Our town does it each year and all of the kids go running outside all excited! It’s so fantastic and I agree… Christmas does help to restore some of those lost childhood feelings 🙂

    Have a great holiday!

  22. Julie says:

    Thanks for stopping by. That fire truck is way cool! I had a patient at work who decorated her walker with fake poinsettias and lights (I’m not sure how she got them to light up without being plugged in).

  23. ElleBee says:

    I always thought of myself as a small-town girl at heart. Thanks for sharing this little bit of Americana! Hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas! 🙂

  24. Renée aka Mekhismom says:

    Merry Christmas Preston! I am so glad that we “met” I am looking forward to getting to know you even better during the upcoming year.

    Happy Holidays!

  25. Preston says:

    Jen – Yea, I think the fire truck is cool too!

    Tamicks – I plan to enjoy my Christmas. I hope you have a wonderful one yourself!

    boufmom9 – I’m so glad your community does Santa on the fire engine. It really helps put me in a holiday spirit.

    Julie – I like stopping by your blog. And I think it’s awesome that your patient decorated her walker for Christmas. You should have taken a picture!

    Ellebee – I grew up in a small town so I am a small-town boy at heart myself.

    Renee – I am so glad we “met” too. I’m sure we’ll be posting comments back and forth all through next year!

  26. Ken @ Dad to Two says:

    Hey Preston,
    Hope you and your loved ones have a Merry Christmas. Love the small town Christmas. I think my town is even too small to be called a small town, so it will just be us on the roads, driving off to visit family that live in real towns.

  27. Tracy P. says:

    Suspense would be the word of the day around here. My daughter is pretty much beside herself.

    Merry Christmas to you, too, Preston! Thanks for stopping by The Journey.

  28. Preston says:

    Ken – Thanks and I send the same warm holiday greetings to you and your family!

    Tracy – Suspense is the perfect word. I don’t have little ones running around here anymore but I sure do remember! Merry Christmas!

  29. Mystery Man says:

    I spent most of my life in small towns so I’m used to these parades like this, too. That fire turck was awesome, though! I don’t think we had any of those in any i’ve been to or in, then again most of those have been during the day and it’d be kid of hard and pointless to have lights on a fire truck then…lol

    Happy Holidays to you and yours!

  30. Sticky (not too) says:

    Wow, what a wonderful way to spend an evening…I always did love me a fireman…



    Dropped by to wish you a very happy holiday! Hope to get to know you even better in the New Year, as far as bloggy stalking goes 🙂


  31. Babette says:

    That is nice for kids. I agree that small town America is magical during the holidays. I wish you a Merry Christmas with your family and friends Preston. No matter where you are celebrating, I know you will make the most of it. :o)

  32. Preston says:

    Mystery Man – Where I grew up Santa also rode in a fire truck but it was during the day so it had no lights. They did put a really big wreath on the front of the truck’s grill. Happy Holidays!

    Sticky – Yes, nothing says the holidays like a man in a uniform! And I’m sure we’ll be good “bloggy” friends. 🙂

    Jamie – You’re welcome. Happy Holidays!

    Babette – I believe the holidays are all about the kids. Thanks for your warm greetings and happy holidays to you.

    Tidymom – Thanks for stopping by. Happy Holidays.

    Foongpc – I plan to enjoy myself. Happy Holidays!

  33. blueviolet@A Nut in a Nutshell says:

    That’s awesome that Santa rides around town in a fire engine. My little town is far too lame for that.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and I’m glad you did so I could come visit you too. I like your blog.

    Merry Christmas!

  34. Preston says:

    Blueviolet – I’m sorry your little town doesn’t do the Santa/Fire Engine thing…but that doesn’t make it lame. lol

    Thanks for stopping by and Merry Christmas to you!

  35. Mystery Man says:

    lol typical small town decoarations…same everywhere. bet the whole town showed up for the parade and everything shiut down, right?

    Enjoy your holidays!

  36. Kathy at The Junk Drawer says:

    Preston — Merry Christmas, buddy! I much prefer how your town does the Santa-on-the-truck thing. Mine sends him out during the day, very early in the morning. He mostly scares the crap out of everyone. I want a nighttime Santa with a truck all lit up!

    All the best to you today and always,

    Kathy at The Junk Drawer

  37. Preston says:

    Mystery Man – Yup, that’s what happens and that’s the way it should be. LOL Happy holidays to you too!

    Kathy – It really is a sight to see. I don’t know how happy I would be with a early morning Santa. Enjoy your holidays!

  38. Jenners says:

    Great shots! Santa does that in our neighborhood too but my son is too scared of the siren noise to go out and look!

    Just wanted to thank you for stopping by my blog the other day. Merry Christmas!

  39. Preston says:

    Jenners – Yes, sometimes both the sirens and Santa scare the children. Merry Christmas.

    Trent – Merry Christmas to you too!

  40. Preston says:

    Queenie Jeannie – Christmas was wonderful. Spent a lot of time with my daughter and I’m going to post about it once I catch up on about 100 hours of sleep! LOL

  41. Fresh Mommy says:

    What a fun way to celebrate Christmas… in a small town!!! So perfect for the season. Hope yours was wonderful!!


  42. Jaina says:

    How cool is that? I’ve heard that in Ventura they have a plane that flies over looking very much like Santa’s sleigh, I love traditions like this. I hope you had a very Merry Christmas and that your New Year is fabulous. 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by the other day, I’m sorry it took so long to get over here, I took a brief hiatus from the computer during the holiday festivities. I hope to “see” you around soon 🙂

  43. SolitaireMare says:

    Christmas is way over but since I just stumbled by your blog I had to comment on this. Our fire dept. also takes Santa around the neighborhood on a fire engine! I am a big kid and I always loved it and I make sure my kids are dressed and ready every year to wait outside when they hear the commotion coming down the street! It’s definitely a holiday highlight!

    Lovin’ yr blog! ;D

  44. Preston says:

    Solitairemare – Yes, Christmas is over. Boo-hoo! It always goes by so fast. I’m glad your neighborhood does the Santa fire engine thing. It’s so Christmasy. And I’m glad you like my blog!

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