Father always saw to it that his flock of children had a tree for Christmas. Not being a prosperous family, the tree was small, but to the Shore children it was the most wonderful tree in the world.
Nights beforehand, we made festoons by stringing cranberries for color, and several dishpans of popped corn were transformed into lacy garlands by stubby little fingers. English walnuts were gilded and silvered to sparkle among the pine needles. But, most wonderful of all, was the glittery star that was to be placed at the tree’s top.
Time moved slowly, but finally came Christmas Eve. Every wax candle was in its tin socket and lighted. Gifts were piled under the tree. Wonder of wonders - one year it was a motion picture machine that later smelled up the house to high heaven. Another time, roller skates with wooden rollers to learn on. And one grand Yule, it was a Brownie camera with a developing set to go with it. And books, always there were books.
We gathered around the piano and sang with lusty monotones - “Stille Nacht” and other Christmas hymns in German. And all the while, childish eyes were turned towards the Star in the Top of the Tree.