My mother and father’s teenage correspondence

I have been decorating my house for Christmas and this year the theme of my tree is blue lights with all silver decorations and antique decorations. My mother bought me so many antiques over the years. I always would put a few of them on my tree. After her death in 2014 I inherited all of her old decorations which were originally my maternal grandparents’. When my house is all decorated and cleaned I will take pictures of my special antique tree.

While I was looking through all my Christmas boxes I rediscovered a tiny old silver Hudson’s Bay box. I first saw this little box while going through Mom’s things soon after her death. I remember opening it and found ticket stubs and Christmas gift tags, but did not explore it further until now. I was touched to find that inside were the teenage keepsakes of my parents’ early courting.

Maple Leaf Gardens ticket stubs, movie ticket stubs, gift tags and a love letter written by my father. It was all so sweet to see that my mother had saved all this. I share it with you:

My father wrote this when he was eighteen years and five months old. My mother was seventeen years and ten months old. I wish I could ask him why he thought of Santa of all people–in February–to replace him in his coffin. I suppose I get my gallows humour from his side of the family. My paternal grandmother used to hang tiny dolls with nooses from her Christmas tree. I would laugh myself silly all night looking at her tree.

This tag was for a gift from my father to my mother. The red handwriting is not his; it probably was from the sales clerk. I cannot decipher what my dad wrote under his signature. Some kind of fancy flourish?

A tag from my mother for an unknown gift to my father. My mother’s handwriting style never changed, whereas mine has gone through several incarnations.

My father and mother at the Beaux Arts Ball at Casa Loma on January 13, 1961.

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