Meelie's Christmas

Step back into time with the Otis family and see how a very young Amelia Earhart celebrated Christmas with her family. Growing up in the same household with her grandparents was very special for young Amelia.

Amelia Mary Earhart was lovingly raised by her grandparents in Atchison, Kansas, overlooking the Missouri River. She was surrounded with the great love of not only her grandparents, but aunts, uncles, and cousins. There was also Charlie Parks, the handyman, and Mary Barker, the Irish cook and maid whom Meelie adored; and they adored her right back!

Meelie's parents, Edwin and Amy Earhart, made the decision when Meelie was three years old to allow her to live with her grandparents. Her grandmother had become very sad because of the loss of a child and they thought the three-year-old would return joy to her heart. And that it did! Edwin and Amy Earhart continued to live in Kansas City, Kansas, with Meelie's sister, Muriel. They were just a short train trip away and saw their daughter often. Meelie lived with her grandparents until the age of twelve when her father was transferred with the railroad to Des Moines, Iowa.

Mary Barker, the Irish maid, has been so busy preparing for Christmas. Cookies, cakes, and breads have been baked, and the plum pudding is coming out of the oven. The aromas of Christmas!

Grandmother Otis and Meelie's mother have been wrapping gifts and hiding them throughout the house for several weeks.

The scent of Judge Otis's pipe wafts through the air.

A bare spruce tree sits on the back porch just waiting to be festooned on Christmas Eve!

A chilly north wind is beginning to come through.

Excitement of the arrival of family is mounting.

And for Meelie and Pidge, the wonderment of the visit from St. Nicholas is growing inside them!

Now get ready for Christmas! It is just about ready to begin snowing!

--J.A. Kiehl

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