Seniors recount Christmas in the Valley | DrumhellerMail
06192024Wed
Last updateTue, 18 Jun 2024 12pm

Seniors recount Christmas in the Valley

    Christmas has changed considerably in the Drumheller Valley. inSide Drumheller sat down with Cecil and Ida Botkin and asked if they could share their Christmas memories.

Ida: Both of our parents were really poor. Maybe we would get a pair of socks for Christmas, but nothing else.
    Then one year my dad came from Oregon with his sister. She brought us each a doll. A doll is something you never forget when you’ve never had one.
    He’s about the same.

Cecil: Only worse.

Ida: You never even got a doll.

Cecil: We were farmers and we had nothing for Christmas. We didn’t even celebrate it, because we were so poor. We were lucky to get clothes.

Ida: My mom and dad used to raise geese and chickens for Christmas dinner. We usually had a goose for Christmas. But, they couldn’t afford to buy a turkey. Other than that we had all the vegetables we needed.
    In 1944 we each had a weekend off for Christmas, so we got married. But, he went in the army right after that.

Cecil: We got married on the 23rd. That was our Christmas present. Two weeks later I was in the army.

Ida: That’s why we did it, because he had got his call already and we wanted to get married before he left. We’ve had 67 Christmases together.

Ida: We had our first daughter on November 30. We were in Barrie, Ontario, at that time. What do you do with a baby for Christmas? They don’t care whether they get anything or not.
    But we made sure that our own kids never suffered for anything.


The Drumheller Mail encourages commenting on our stories but due to our harassment policy we must remove any comments that are offensive, or don’t meet the guidelines of our commenting policy.