A Literary Christmas Celebration Presents Brittney Holmes

Memories of Christmas Past
By Brittney Holmes

Christmas has always been a special time for me because it’s allows me to reflect on the true meaning behind the holiday. But Christmas is also just about the only time, outside of the Thanksgiving holiday, that I get to spend with my extended family. Not only do I enjoy Christmas because of the priceless moments I get to create with my family, but I also anticipate opening the gifts I receive.

I recall one Christmas where my younger sister decided that she couldn’t wait until Christmas day to open the gifts my parents had bought for her. Being the sneaky person she was, she tried to pull back the wrapping of each of her gifts in order to see what my mother had purchased, neatly wrapped, and snuggly hid under the Christmas tree. And in order to cover up her deception, she attempted to rewrap the gifts, not realizing she’d ruined the wrapping paper in the process.

Well, my mother noticed the discrepancy just before we were to travel to meet with our family and wanted to know who had tried to sneak a peek at the presents. My sister just sat there as if the thought of opening her presents hadn’t even crossed her mind. And it wasn’t as if my mother didn’t already know who the culprit was, being that the only presents that had been tampered with were labeled for my sister. My mother just wanted a confession and it was either that or no presents…at all (even the ones were would receive from other family members). I wasn’t sure what had happened with the presents because I hadn’t seen anyone messing with them, but regardless, I wanted my gifts so I decided to take the blame and whatever punishment came along with it. But my mother knew I wasn’t at fault, so my tearful confession only made her angry because she knew I was lying. It was back to square one as I realized that the only way we were going to enjoy this holiday season was if my sister confessed. A few moments passed before she did and took her punishment like she should have from the beginning.

That’s a Christmas I won’t ever forget, mostly because my mother told everyone in the family and no one allows me or my sister to live either of our roles in the incident down. That Christmas also helped me to realize that the holiday season is not all about receiving, or even giving, gifts. It is about spending time with family and friends and reflecting on the birth of Jesus Christ.


Brittney Holmes is a recent graduate from Redan High School in Stone Mountain, Georgia, where her outstanding GPA earned her the title of Salutatorian of her senior class. For her outstanding academic and extracurricular status, she is recognized in Who’s Who Among High School Students. A gifted journalist, Brittney is a youth contributing writer for Global Woman magazine. Published through Urban Books (Urban Christian imprint), her debut novel, Living Consequences gained recognition from the African American Literary Awards Show where she received the 2007 Open Book Award for Best Young Adult Fiction of the Year. Her second novel, Testing Relationships, was released in June 2008. Brittney is currently a full-time student at the University of Georgia in Athens, where she is majoring in Journalism.

There are 3 comments for this article
  1. yasmin at 10:07 am

    What a touching story; Brittany thanks so much for sharing and happy holidays to you and yours!

  2. Dwan Abrams at 8:58 pm

    Wow, Brittney, what a story! I can just imagine all of you riding in the car going through that. Now that’s a hot mess. I’ll admit, that was a touching story. Thanks for sharing.

  3. PatriciaW at 9:20 am

    Sometimes the lessons learned the hard way are the ones most remembered. Thanks for sharing, Brittany!