Friday, December 5, 2014

It's Christmas Time in the City -- Lights of Astoria, Queens


I know that it's Friday, but for the purpose of blogging each day until Christmas, this is my Thursday post. I spent the evening in Astoria, Queens, celebrating the retirement of one of my closest colleagues. This is one of the street decorations I saw as I walked from the subway to the restaurant where the party was taking place.

The decorations were simple, evocative of a time and place that exists no longer except in my mind, my childhood. The neighborhood reminds me of the neighborhood I grew up in with small single family houses and small apartment buildings, a lot of non-chain stores and restaurants. It was only a flash of a minute, but for that minute I was thinking of the Life Saver storybook and the thick mesh stockings filled with hard candy sold at Grant's or Kresge's. It was only a minute, but what a sweet minute.

The memories faded quickly and I returned to the present. The retirement party was wonderful and I loved seeing so many of my former colleagues. I felt very grateful for the warmth and good feelings of the evening.

Tonight I am counting my blessings for the sweet memories of long ago and the good times of the present. I am grateful that I got to experience both in one short evening.

What are the sweet moments that are precious times of the season that you remember?

As always thanks for visiting and take good care. Please stop by for Christmas in New York Foodie Friday tomorrow. It will be a sweet one. 

8 comments:

TARYTERRE said...

It's funny that you mentioned the Life Saver storybook. I haven't thought about it in years. I used to get one every year around the holidays. They really made me smile. I'm glad you had a similar memory. I also remember Grant's and Kresge's too. What fun it was to venture inside.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It's a tradition in our family to get a Life Saver Storybook in your Christmas stocking. Matter of fact, I just purchased some yesterday to give. They do still make them and for us, the celebration wouldn't be complete with out them. They do evoke a lot of wonderful memories.

Gail Rogers said...

Carol, ditto for everything you said about last night's party, and I remember Grant's and Kresge's too!! I'm not sure if we previously discussed where both of us lived years ago, but one of the first things I thought about while driving to that neighborhood was my high school - Bryant. Although I lived in Sunnyside (down block from the Bliss Street Station - commonly known as 46th Street those days), I used to walk to Steinway Street quite often and had friends that lived in Woodside and Astoria. I hope we can stay in touch; I would love to get together and catch up sometime after I retire. Fondly, Gail

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

I used to do most of my Christmas shopping at Kresge and Grants when I was a girl in NY? The neighborhood that I grew up in sounds very much like yours and everybody knew each other. Here, where I live in the pretty suburbs, I know only one other family and seldom see them. Thank God for old friends or I would be very lonely.

Holiday memories touch the heart the most.

Susie said...

Buttercup, So glad you had the great time with friends. I love the place you described. More of a small town homey feeling. My blessed memories have been as I look and touch the ornaments on my tree....they make me think of family and Christmases long ago. Hope your weekend is fun. Be safe when going out. xoxo,Susie

Kerin said...

So glad that you had such a nice time with friends, and made new memories :)
Love the picture and your sweet thoughts of days gone by.
Yes.. Christmas' past used to be more "Norman Rockwell", didn't they?!

I still look for Lifesavers books for our grown up kids.. but I didn't buy any. The only flavors that they have inside now, is multi flavors.
I like the old books with Buttered Rum, Wintergreen, and Cherry lifesavers in..

~Warm wishes~
K.

Nellie said...

What a great time you must have had! Love the decorations! When our children were younger, we would walk the neighborhood street on the evening of the twins' birthday singing carols.

Annesphamily said...

Glad you enjoyed the party! Oh the memories, I remember mom and dad giving us the Life Saver Christmas Book each year filled with all the flavors of Life Savers. Simple times. Hugs, Anne