I was working on my life story and thought this memory was really funny and worth sharing.

When I was young, cleaning was often put off until the last minute. Because of this, we often spent some time cleaning on Christmas day before all of the extended family came over. One year my sister, two brothers, and I were cleaning the living room. One of the chores was to empty the extra ashes out of the wood-burning fireplace and take them way out in the back yard to dump them. Being children who didn't want to clean any longer than we had to, we took a short cut. We dumped the ashes into the metal garbage can sitting on the ground next to the back porch. We thought we were pretty smart putting the ashes in the metal can on the ground. What could happen? Then we went back to work around the house.

You could imagine our parents' surprise when there was a large fire coming out of the garbage can. We learned it wasn't too smart to put the ashes on top of the other garbage!

Nothing catastrophic happened from the fire, but it definitely gave a new meaning to "chestnuts roasting on an open fire"and a great laugh for the family.

Its amazing, as I have grown to an adult, how different memories stand out in my mind. I makes me grateful for the wonderful memories I have of my family. Who knew one of my life stories would be about cleaning on Christmas!