new year’s eve party

For many people, starting the new year off right means making New Year’s resolutions, and planning to make big changes in whatever areas they don’t like about themselves and their lives. That is a noble idea, even though most New Year’s resolutions are forgotten by February, but that is not how my family started the new year…nor did we finish the last one like most families either. That was because of my mom, Collene Spencer. It wasn’t that Mom did anything to make the new year extra special…she was a typical mom who loved her family, and worked hard to give us a happy life, but then so did most parents. It was the fact that Mom’s birthday was January 1st, that started the year off special…and ended the prior year in a special way too.

My dad, Al Spencer loved our mom so much. She was his princess, his “Doll,” and he was always happiest when they were together. Dad worked hard to make our lives, and especially the life of his “Doll,” the best life anyone could ever have. And he succeeded very well. We were a very happy family, and New Year’s, both eve and day, were very special. Our year ended with a New Year’s Eve party…one that we kids got to attend too. It was a gathering of friends and family at our house, when we were little. Many parents go out and get a sitter for their kids on New Year’s Eve, but we lived where the party was, and we were welcome, as were our cousins, and later our friends. Dad never wanted his kids to be out in the world on New Year’s Eve, because of the obvious dangers of drinking and driving. We always got to party, and we were always safe at home. The party was about the end of the year and the beginning of the new year, but mostly it was about our mom. This was her celebration, and our dad always made it an awesome one for his “Doll.”

New Year’s Day always included a big birthday dinner for Mom, and of course, birthday cake and her presents. Our year always started of with a big celebration. While many people used the day as a way to get over their hangover, and mostly sleep the day away, our day was filled with joy, laughter, and fun. That was because of the great love our dad had for Mom, for us, and for making our lives fun. The memories my sisters, Cheryl Masterson, Caryl Reed, Alena Stevens, Allyn Hadlock, and I, as well as our families, have from all those New Year’s celebrations over the years will always warm our hearts. Mom and Dad are in Heaven now, but we do our best to continue the tradition in their honor. Today would have been Mom’s 84th birthday. Happy birthday in Heaven Mom. We love and miss you very much. We will see you and Dad again soon.

Uncle George 1George & Evelyn Hushman, Collene & Allen SpencerMy uncle, George Hushman, became the first in-law in my mom’s family, when he married her sister, Evelyn Byer. He was a novelty, I suppose. I know that is how the younger siblings always feel when it comes to brothers-in-law or sisters-in-law. It all new and fun, and the younger siblings are always made to feel special. Funny thing about little kids, each new family member is as awesome as the last, but somehow that first one always holds a special place in their hearts. It’s like suddenly their horizons are broader. They learn about the fact that there are people outside their little world, who somehow fit into their little world. Then too, as the new children come along and subsequent in-laws are added, the love in the family just seems to grow everyday.

That is how my sisters and I have always felt about Uncle George. I guess it was because we were close in age to their kids, and Mom and Dad were friends with Aunt Evelyn and Uncle George, as well as siblings. Our families did things together, and the two couples did things together, such as bowling. It was their weekly outing, and they always had such a good time. I suppose that is how bowing became a family tradition. It seems that if you enjoy a sport, you pass it down to your kids. Many of both families have bowled at one time or another, and some continue to do so, such as my husband, Bob Schulenberg and me.

Many a New Year’s Eve party included Aunt Evelyn, Uncle George, and their kids, and we always had a great time. My parents liked having a party, because the 1st of January is my mother’s birthday. It seemed a perfect 11659345_855308061171967_8774953698497382717_n11202968_10204229033315109_1124465696470701278_nreason to have a big bash. And my sisters and I always felt like it was a better party when the families got together for it…especially if they brought the kids. I’m not sure how some people might have felt about that part, but Mom and Dad always wanted to include the kids, and I think their families appreciated that. I mean, how many New Year’s Eve parties include the kids? Very few. I know that as kids, whenever Aunt Evelyn, Uncle George and their kids were over…it was a good time. Today is Uncle George’s 90th birthday. Happy birthday Uncle George!! Have a great day!! We love you!!

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