Endeavoring to get the Christmas tree done, I opted to reach for one of my favorite holiday films: A Christmas Story. Affectionately known in my family as “Ralphy.”

I’m not sure if my mother tended to think about her parents a lot when we were decorating for Christmas, or if she was too busy with us little hooligans, but I tend to think about my parents as I put up the tree. Pretty much my entire life: we’ve watched Ralphy. It’s long been a tradition of sorts for me to catch it at least once during the Christmas marathon, often in bits and pieces. It never really seems like Christmas time without that.

For me, it’s got a double meaning of sorts. See, the film is so exactly a reflection of the world that my momma grew up in that hearing about that itself was kind of like a Christmas tradition itself. It was kind of her way of sharing a piece of her childhood with her own children. To even fathom how many references to her childhood there is in the film, we’d probably have to enumerate just how much ‘stuff’ is shown in Ralphy, lol.

Must of heard all the stories a thousand times over growing up, but I never really got tired of hearing her share that with us.