A Natalie Christmas Story

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” as the 1951 song by Meredith Wilson goes.

Just the other day, Courtney and I were talking about our mom and we both agreed that it is hard for us to pick which holiday was our mom’s very favorite because she made all the holidays in our life feel so special. But if we had to pick one we agreed it would be Christmas. Maybe because so much of her childhood was spent on movie sets, or because her greatest wish was to have children, or maybe because she was in the greatest Christmas movie of all time (in our humble opinion!) Miracle on 34th Street but our mom always made Christmas at our house an unforgettable experience.

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Every year, we would buy our Christmas tree as soon as they hit the lots (this was way before the drought in California when people could actually have Christmas trees for longer periods of time). We remember Willie Mae our beloved nanny, helping my mom carry up the big boxes of ornaments from our basement. All five of us, plus Willie Mae, our godfathers, Howard and Mart, and my mom’s best friends would spend the evening decorating the tree.

Without fail, at the end of each yearly tree-trimming extravaganza, my mom would exclaim, “This is the best Christmas tree we have ever had!”

Courtney and I would fall down laughing and my dad would say, “Natalie, you always say that!”

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But the fun didn’t stop there. My parents would host a Christmas Eve party for my sisters and I and all of our friends complete with a visit from jolly old Santa who would show up with gifts for every child. When the time came for Santa to be on his way, my dad would hide behind the window of our living room and jingle some sleigh bells. That was Santa’s cue to ask the us, “Can you hear the bells?”

“YES!” we would shout in unison.

“The reindeer are getting restless,” he would say. He needed to get back to his sleigh so that he could start making his away around the globe delivering all the children’s gifts. (Weren’t we lucky that our house on Canon Drive was his first stop?!) And of course, before it was time for bed, my parents, Katie, Courtney, and I would carefully arrange a tray of cookies and milk for Santa.

In the morning before we opened our presents, my mom and dad would read the “letter” that Santa wrote to us. In the letter he would talk about various accomplishments or happy moments from throughout the year. Courtney and I would marvel to each other “How does he know this stuff?! Santa is the greatest.”(It wasn’t until Courtney and I started to recognize my dad’s handwriting that we realized somebody else other than Santa was writing the letters to us!)

Now that I am a mother, I love recreating these holiday traditions with Clover and my stepsons. I feel my mom’s childlike enthusiasm and joy on Christmas morning when I watch my children listen to my husband read their “letter” from Santa just like my parents did with me.

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I wish everyone the warmest of holidays. Thank you again for helping me keep my beautiful mom’s memory alive. Creating the Natalie fragrance and assisting Manoah in the book has been the most beautiful experience for me, and feeling the love and support from all of you has made me deeply happy.

Hopefully the child within all of us will shine bright with holiday cheer this season.

Love
Natasha

25 Comments

  • Beautifully said Natasha! Thank you to you and Courtney for sharing her with all of us! I wear the perfume everyday and think of her! Happy Christmas!!

  • What beautiful memories! Hoping you and your family have a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

  • Dearest Natasha,

    And thank you for bring us a wonderful piece of your lovely mother with your fragrance, the beautiful book, and especially your stories. Your generous fragrance gift is a continuation of the fragrance gifts your mother would send. Have a wonderful holiday season.

  • Thank you for sharing these special memories of Christmas with your mom. She was a lovely lady

  • I loved this so much! You’re an awesome writer. So touching & lovely.

  • Merry Christmas to you all!

  • Thank you Natasha for sharing your sweet Christmas memories of your mom. I love the pictures and stories that you share. Loved seeing you on TCM and hearing the behind the scene stories of some of your mom’s movies. Hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday.

  • Natasha,
    Thank you so much for sharing your family’s traditions and love with us. Your Mom has always been a part of my family’s Christmas tradition for many years. The watching of “Miracle on 34th Street” has been a magical part of our late night last minute gift wrapping & assembly binge, along with many batches of sugar cookies & hot chocolate.
    The message & magic of that movie has always given us hope and much joy.
    Wishing you and your family a very magical Holiday Season.
    Cliff.

  • Christmas would never be complete, without your Moms’ film Miracle on 34th street. I
    couldn’t understand why I looked so forward to this story every year. But now with the
    Natalie Fragrance, Natasha and Courtney sharing their Mother’s story. I realized I didn’t
    just miss the movie I missed Natalie. Yes, I never met her but I missed Natalie from afar.
    Thanks for all of what you’ve done in honoring your mother’s memory and please Natasha
    and Courtney, always remember, you are your mothers greatest legacy.

    Dorothy Ann

  • I love hearing all your stories about your beautiful mother, Natalie Wood. I feel we have something in common, my mother died a month before my 8th birthday, and she was so much like your mother, she loved gardenia ‘s, and planted them in the entry way to our front door, so it always smelled so good. Gardenia reminds me of her, she went out of her way to make Christmas and my birthday ‘s so special, just like your mother. I will be getting the Natalie fragrance for myself for Christmas this year. Thank you for all that you have done in memory of your mother!
    Sincerely,
    Cynthia Bell

  • Thank you for sharing your beautiful, heartwarming Christmas memories. I so enjoyed seeing you and your Dad host your Mom’s classic films last month on TCM. Wishing you and your family a joyous holiday season.

  • Hi Natasha,
    We met this summer in Southampton, NY.
    I was telling you about how my Mom and yours were around the same age and looked similar and how my Mom grew up loving your mother and she introduce me to all of her movies, and then I became a big fan.
    I just love hearing your personal stories of her and your family and not the stuff you read in the magazines (which I don’t buy). Keep them coming!
    Wishing you and your family a very blessed Christmas.
    Love,
    Dina Cerverizzo-Vigorito

  • Hi !

    That’s adorable, you’re mom’s legacy it’s gonna be remember it forever !! she IS amazing and i love her so much, thank you for sharing this ! kisses from the (now warm) Argentina (I sended a messege to the fragance Instagram)

  • that was beautiful, I loved watching Miracle on 34th street growing up, I am *trying* to get my children to sit thru it 🙂 Merry Christmas to your family!

  • This was perfectly lovely! How kind of you to show us rare family photo treasures of your Mom. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

  • How lovely, warm and so very straight from the heart !!! Your Mom is watching over you and Courtney every day. You are loved !!

  • Marry Christmas, Nastasha! Thanks for sharing your wonderful memories with us!

  • Thank you for sharing your beautiful mother with us! God Bless you and your family.

  • Thank you so much for sharing some of your personal memories and photos of your mom with those of us who also loved your mom, even though we never got to meet her. I love reading your anecdotes.
    I hope there will be a Natalie body creme or lotion soon. I’m loving the scent and letting friends know about it too and getting them interested.
    FYI – Meredith Willson’s last name has 2 ‘L’s’. I was friends with him.
    XOXO,
    Jill

  • I loved A Natalie Christmas Story and the wonderful pictures too ! I have the beautiful book and a sample of the lovely perfume. I am allergic to perfume, but I had to have a sample anyway. I am a doll collector and my dream is someone will make a beautiful doll of Natalie. I hope Natasha that you and your family will have a very blessed Christmas and New Year.

    God bless you always,
    Donna

  • Thank you for sharing these wonderful memories and photos of your mother. I became a fan of your mother’s when I was 13 and saw Rebel Without a Cause, and 30 years later I remain a fan. She was stunningly beautiful, and clearly gracious, loving and kind, and a wonderful mother. Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas!

  • Lovely post, thanks for sharing this <3 We have two boys and we are gearing up to make them a happy Christmas. I always do their stockings 🙂

  • I loved reading this lovely memory and the beautiful tradition that is being passed down from generation to generation. I’m sure that your Mom is smiling down on you!

  • hi today I going to watch a few natalie movies I am a big fan

  • I have loved Natalie Wood since I was a kid, she brought the world so much love and joy. Thank you Natasha for continuing the legacy of your mom.

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