Posted by: Andy | December 24, 2009

What I’ll Miss Most This Christmas

What I’ll miss most this Christmas:

  • Having you take my picture in front of the tree or the fireplace with the family – or hanging my stocking. An annual tradition!
  • Helping you pick out the biggest, fattest REAL Christmas tree we could find.
  • Putting my shoes outside of my bedroom door for Santa to fill – then waiting patiently in the middle of the night to hear the distinct sound of a present being placed in them. And yes, I knew it was you.
  • Quietly placing my ear to the door to hear you downstairs trying to put together “Requires Assembly” items.
  • Trying to wake you and mom up so we could go downstairs – then once downstairs hearing you say “Santa was here!”
  • Having you come in my room to tell me that they spotted Santa on the radar. I totally bought it.
  • The Atari, Intellivision and the amazing Casio keyboard. Still the best gifts ever.
  • Also that car thing you gave us that you had to push. All the other kids had Big Wheels and Cheetahs. We had that car thing.
  • Helping you hang the Christmas lights on the outside of the house. Somehow you got every string to work year after year.
  • John Denver’s Rocky Mountain Christmas.
  • Classical Christmas music softly played through your stereo on Christmas Eve. I still listen to it every year.
  • Your practical gifts – extension cords, light bulbs, flashlights, batteries, CDs, DVDs – their usefulness outlasting any other present.
  • Your quiet contentment in watching everyone else have fun on Christmas morning.
  • Waiting for you to light the Kerosene heater so we wouldn’t freeze in the addition – and of course the smell!
  • Your photographic and computer skills. Everyone had a CD full of pictures, a DVD video and color prints to take home less than 1 hour after opening gifts.
  • Shopping for that one electronic gadget, gizmo, tool or flashlight that you didn’t already have. It didn’t exist.
  • Also shopping for that one brain-teaser or puzzle that you couldn’t solve. Didn’t exist either.
  • The call to Argentina on Christmas day. Even though I didn’t speak Spanish you would always make me talk to the relatives – and I’m glad I did.
  • Mom always getting you clothes – in the wrong size.
  • The velour shirts you loved.
  • The secret missions you sent us on to retrieve that big surprise present from the car or van.
  • Your complaints about how spoiled we were as kids after getting too many gifts. We were. Thank you for that.
  • Your standard response to the question “Dad, what do you want for Christmas this year?”  – Peace. I never understood why you said that. I do now.
  • You giving us the ways and means to always have Christmas together as a family.

Most of all dad, the thing I’ll miss the most this Christmas is you. It just won’t be the same. Merry Christmas!



  1. Thank you for this wonderful reflection. I have thought of your family often during these past months, especially your mom. My husband has MM and was diagnosed at about the same time as your dad. Fortunately for us, he is still with us He will have a stem cell transplant (hopefully) in January or February. Please know that I keep you in thought and prayer. Peace. Anna Marie

  2. Querida familia norteamericana:

    Muchos nos ha emocionado leer lo que escribió Andres sobre sus sentimientos en esta “Navidad distinta”. Es muy grato ver que Mario les enseñó a vivir esta fiesta muy importante para nosotros por su sentido religioso, de la misma forma que nosotros festejábamos cuando eramos chicos.
    El se dedicaba a armar el “pesebre” con las imágenes de Jesus, la Virgen, San José y los Reyes Magos que traían regalos al niño recién nacido.
    A mí ( Tely) junto con Nenina, nos dedicábamos ha hacer adornos nuevos para el Arbol de Navidad y decorar las paredes y ventanas.
    A las 10 de la Noche ibámos a Misa y después abríamos los regalos. Cuando nos íbamos a dormir, también dejábamos los zapatos en la puerta del dormitorio, y al despertarnos el día 25, encontrábamos los regalos “traídos” por el Niño Dios.
    Era una gran fiesta porque también trabajábamos para preparar comidas, como ensalada de fruta con vino blanco, para festejar ese día 25, el cumpleaños de nuestro padre. El tenía 8 hermanos varones y como era verano y estábamos de vacaciones, eran muchos los que se acercaban a saludarlo.

  3. Muy feliz Año nuevo para toda la familia Acuña de USA.
    Este año en particular los tendremos muy presentes a todos
    Un beso especial para Barbara.
    De la tia FELI la mas vieja de la familia.

  4. Felicies fiestas
    Querida familia Acuña les deseo a todos muy felices fiestas , los tendremos presentes en esta Navidad y Año Nuevo especialmente .
    He Leido en el Super Mario´s Blog el hermoso recuerdo de Uds para esta Navidad , para todos la ausencia de Mario se sentirá mucho . Qu eel cariño que el les supo trasmitir los mantenga por siempre unidos especialmente en estas festividades
    Un beso para todos de Felicitas y flia

  5. To the family and friends of Dr. Mario Acuna….I extend my sympathies on the loss of this very kind man. Many years ago…40 in fact, Dr. Acuna and his wife, Barbara were part of a small group of friends when my (now ex) husband, Bill Scholtz worked at Goddard Space Flight Center. I only now saw of Dr. Acuna’s passing when I googled his name to see what he might be doing in relation to the science being done on Mars. A friend of mine in an astronomy club reminded me of the quote from Sir Issac Newton, “We are just dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants”. Indeed, Dr. Acuna was one of those giants.

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