When I was growing up, there were two annual events that signaled the start of the holiday season…. Charlie Brown’s Thanksgiving special on television and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. After many years, I still feel nostalgic about Good ol’ Charlie Brown — from watching the Great Pumpkin on October 1 to anticipating the first snowfall while enjoying A Charlie Brown Christmas. And the parade was something I enjoyed along with my four brothers and sisters all crowded around our one television, eating cereal and waiting for the first glimpse of the Snoopy balloon and, of course, the big man himself…Santa!
Last week, I had the great opportunity to relive some of my childhood by visiting Chicago’s famous Macy’s store on State Street. I was invited to attend a private reception to unveil their newly decorated tree in the Walnut Room, sample their special holiday menu, and preview a new, temporary monogramming service featuring the Peanuts characters. Macy’s and Charlie Brown? I was in Holiday Heaven!
Although shopping in a store is not the same as attending a live parade, seeing the beautiful tree trimmed in gold decorations and listening to Christmas music (albeit a tad early) – all surrounded by images of the Peanuts gang – brought a smile to my face. The picture perfect setting made me want to be a child again, even if only for a brief moment to imagine Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus, and Sally holding hands, singing carols around the tree.
I left the reception – personalized Peanuts’ items in hand – full of holiday cheer, humming a Vince Guaraldi tune all the way home. Thank you Macy’s and Happy Holidays!