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My Holiday Memories

Winnipeg Jets share their holiday memories and traditions

Saturday, 24.12.2011 / 10:00 AM / Feature
By Kristi Hennessy  - Coordinator, Web Content
Everyone has their own unique family traditions, whether you are from Stonewall or Sweden, you're holiday celebrations are unique. Five Winnipeg Jets players shared their holiday memories and traditions, unique to their families, and unique to their homes.  “Christmas Eve we usually get together as a family and open one gift, usually pajamas or something like that the night before. We’d always get up and go to my Grandpa’s for Christmas morning for a big brunch and do all of the gift exchange there. We would later have our Christmas turkey dinner.

Best Christmas memory:
The one that stands out is because I’ve seen the pictures and it brings back memories. It was the first time my brother and I got gear and were standing in front of the fireplace with our helmets and full gear on; I was probably five years old.

“It’s my favourite holiday; it’s always unbelievable. We have dinner on the 24th and then presents after dinner. We have potato salad, fish and fish soup but I don’t eat fish anymore so I eat chicken. The 24th was my favourite day; we just would watch Christmas movies and spend time with family. I remember always being so excited for dinner. I couldn’t wait to have the presents.”

Best Christmas memory:
“We would go play hockey all day long on Christmas in the cold. I’d always play with the friends that I grew up with on the street and around the house. On Christmas I think I played eight hours in a row, it was the first thing that I did when I woke up, just grab the stick and go outside and play hockey.

“Every Christmas is something special, I don’t think it’s about the presents, it’s about spending some time with your family.”

“Most of my family is from Illinois. I grew up in Minnesota, but everybody else, grandparents and extended family are all in Illinois. We always used to go to my Grandma’s house on Christmas Eve on my dad’s side, spend the night there and then Christmas Day, go over to my mom’s side on the other side of town and spend Christmas Day with them. We did that almost every year.”

What’s for dinner?
“At my Dad’s parents they make an Italian dish called bagna cauda. It sounds pretty bad and it’s not good for you either, but I love it. Basically it’s butter, anchovies and a bunch of garlic cloves, and you cook it in a big pan until it’s like a paste and you dip break, cabbage, celery and other things into it, it’s unbelievable. You wake up in the morning and your hands and feet are so swollen because of the amount of salt but it’s once a year and I look forward to it every Christmas.”

“For us, Christmas is about spending time with your family. The 24th is our biggest day. Santa Claus (Tomte) in Sweden comes for the kids and we usually have a big dinner. It’s a nice time to have with your family.

What’s for dinner?
“There are always Swedish meatballs. There are a lot of things on the table like meatballs, ham and sausage. I love the Christmas food we have.”

Christmas memory?
“I was maybe 10 or 11 years old. I have a brother that is close to the same age and he got something that I wanted that I didn’t get. A bicycle. I don’t remember what I got but I wasn’t happy about it that’s for sure!”

“We would just go over to my grandmas on Christmas Eve. The whole family would get together and have a great time, have a great dinner and open presents there. Christmas morning we’d celebrate with just our family, have a snowball fight or two and then head back to where we were going because hockey takes up a lot of family time for sure.”

Most memorable gift?
“I remember when I was really young, everyone had coats from the house team that you played with. You put patches on it from the tournaments you went to and your name was on the back and you’d put a bunch of pins on it. My parents got me one of those and I still have it to this day. It’s red corduroy. I still remember opening it up, putting it on and feeling like I had a varsity coat from high school or college and I was like six or seven years old.”




1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67


B. Wheeler 82 28 41 4 69
B. Little 82 23 41 8 64
D. Byfuglien 78 20 36 -20 56
A. Ladd 78 23 31 8 54
O. Jokinen 82 18 25 -8 43
M. Frolik 81 15 27 8 42
E. Kane 63 19 22 -7 41
M. Scheifele 63 13 21 9 34
T. Enstrom 82 10 20 -9 30
J. Trouba 65 10 19 4 29
A. Montoya 13 8 3 .920 2.30
O. Pavelec 22 26 7 .901 3.01