This narrative created by Gloria Mora recalls a time, not so long ago, and a lifestyle, now considerably altered, that no doubt will cause wonder to among the young readers of today. The stories are written in the language spoken by the residents of La Puente, New Mexico some sixty years ago—and which is still spoken by those still living there. These vignettes envelop the reader in the cultural currents of the Spain of the Seventeenth Century, the Mexican culture of the Eighteenth, and the Anglo-Americans of the late Nineteenth Century. It must be said that the language is predominately colonial Spanish, integrated with Mexican Spanish and to a lesser degree with indigenous languages of central Mexico and the upper Río Grande river valley. There is also some borrowing from English.
August 1, 2013
“Mis Crismes in New Mexico 1956, Christmas in La Puente, New Mexico,” is a story told by Gloria, a seven-year-old who visits her grandparents’ ranch in La Puente, New Mexico, a small community three miles from Tierra Amarilla. Gloria conveys how her family and her ancestors celebrated Christmas. This story allows those of us who lived in New Mexico during this time period an opportunity to revisit our past, and for those who were not there an opportunity to get a glimpse of the charming New Mexican traditions. Gloria’s grandparents were my next door neighbors. Consequently, Gloria and I shared experiences of the past.
July 22, 2108
Re: MIS CRISMES 1956, Christmas in La Puente, New Mexico
My life vocation is as a T.V./film producer which includes the development of Villa Alegre, a children’s bilingual program for PBS. Additionally, I served as a Production Consultant for The Milagro Bean Field War, Executive Producer of The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez, CEO of Buena Vision Cable Company, Executive Producer for Programming for WNBC-TV New York, twice listed as one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics, nominated for seven Emmys and recipient of two.
A story of language, customs, relationships and family love, Mis Crismes is a memoir of an Hispanic family in La Puente, New Mexico, (take a right at Tierra Amarilla) celebrating Christmas in 1956. It is told through the voice of seven-year-old Gloria Mora.
¡Buenos días te de dios y te mando felicidades!
I read “MIS CRISMES” yesterday. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was very well written and accurately describes what the tempo of life and culture of northern New Mexico was back in the day. I sincerely hope that you continue to write, as you do it well.
Mis Crismes, how many of you are from Northern New Mexico, remember los abuelitos. They came to our houses 9 days before Christmas to talk with the kids. And after la Misa del Gallo, mid-night mass, a good sleep, and next morning, you were off to visit house after house on the town, house pidiendo “mis crismes”, and you would get a lot of goodies, in your bag to take home, una naranja, manzana, piñón, dulces duros, biscochitos y más. Then you would go home to enjoy a nice lunch with family, and friends. “OH!” the memories.
Yay! Congratulations on your amazing color illustrations. I am curious to know the medium you used as I have a friend who is looking to illustrate his photos but finding it cost prohibitive.
What a tender and wonderful story you’ve written. It took me back to the smells of my grandma’s kitchen and the warmth of being with family.
“This enlightening story opens the doors to the Hispanic culture and Colonial Spanish dating back to the late sixteenth century. This story is a treasure for the readers as a bilingual text, annotations and glossary.
September 30, 2013
Mis Crismes 1956, Christmas in La Puente, New Mexico, nonfiction
The author writes of her Christmas experience as a seven year old child and describes the young girl’s desire to spend Christmas as she has in past years featuring: city lights, Christmas carols , decorated tree and gifts left by Santa Claus. The author vividly describes a transition in the child’s thinking of what constitutes a wonderful Christmas by participating in Christmas traditions of Northern New Mexico including the encounter with Los Abueletos, serenading by elderly members of the community at each home on New Year’s eve and the warmth of the family during dinner. Living the New Mexico traditions of Christmas changes the young girl’s desires to spend Christmas in the city and to remain in her new found Christmas ways.