Southport NC Living - Southport NC homes


Southport NC - Christmas Traditions

Sometimes the perfect scene comes out of nowhere. The tranquil view at left doesn't fall into the spectacular category but to me it speaks simply to the perfect stillness of fading light. I love it when it is calm like this, when you can just stand there, listening to rare quiet, smelling the salt air and the earthy richness of the marsh.

I keep thinking of the possibility of a new family tradition. Over the holidays, when we have all the girls home, we try and celebrate Christmas Eve in the hidden nook of our back yard we call "Camp Burton" around a big fire. We roast some sweet, salty lockwood folly oysters, eat clam chowder and cornbread muffins, and count our many blessings. This year our oyster roast moves up the road and will include our annual reading of the which is not to be missed…

christmas flounder
Anyway, A few years ago I got a bee in my bonnet and set out to find out about something I’d heard was a Christmas tradition in Southport back in the days of the Great Depression, when many couldn’t afford a turkey to garnish the Christmas table. I couldn’t find much about it on the internet but lo and behold, a few weeks ago, by some miracle, it showed up on the Star News….with a history AND a recipe! Actually it was published in ‘09 and it is the story of a Christmas Flounder. A stuffed whole flounder, that is. I know a couple people that might indulge me, if the weather is right, to head out on Christmas Day with the intent of bringing home a big fat winter flounder. Wouldn’t that be great!

heifer2I want to mention once again a really good cause that I'm sure many are familiar with, , with its simple, proactive  approach to world hunger. Individuals have the opportunity to various species of farm animals which are delivered to villages in need. Before any Heifer animal is brought to a project partner, the recipients are trained in very specific guidelines and must share their first offspring with a neighboring village and thus, the gift continues and self-reliance can grow. Heifer International also teaches them environmentally-sound agricultural techniques that help rejuvenate the land, watheifer3er and other natural resources.

My Mom was the first one to introduce me to Heifer at Christmas many years ago. She set up a jar on the mantle for all her young grandchildren, great-nieces and  nephews who were all together. She managed to get them all to give up enough of their Christmas money to donate a flock of chickens and a goat to a village in need. We've been giving as a family at Christmas ever since. Back in ‘07, I set up a Registry on Heifer's web site in Mom's name called Betty's Animal Gifts. I reckon we’ve put together a whole barnyard by now.  Click on the link above to see how easy it is to make a difference in the lives of an entire community.


If your inclined to give a little closer to home, one local organization where you can do the most good is . It provides food, clothing, and Christmas baskets for low income families throughout Brunswick County.

There aren’t many of us who aren’t feeling the pinch of the slow economy. Small businesses and the self-employed are the hardest hit and it makes sense to shop locally and keep our hard-earned money right here at home. In Southport, does a good job promoting and encouraging the small businesses that do so much to make our little town viable and inviting to both residents and visitors here.

So to all of my readers, family, friends, and co-workers, I wish you the very best of the Christmas Season… a time for family… a time of hope… a time for believing in miracles… a time for good food and fellowship with those we love… and most of all, a time to give thanks for our many, many blessings.
Merry Christmas to you and yours!