Readers share stories behind their stockings -
Published Saturday, December 22, 2012 at 1:00 am / Updated at 4:08 pm
Readers share stories behind their stockings

Our readers had plenty of stories to share about the tradition of Christmas stockings in their families. Most were started by a mother, grandmother or aunt (nope, no men) and passed down to present generations. Here is a sampling:

>> Omahan Lisa Roth said her aunt sent her a stocking when she was 16. Then the aunt sent stockings when Roth’s children (now 17 and 22) were born. When Roth and John Cox bought a home together, she hunted down a woman in Canada who could replicated the knit stockings for Cox, his three children and two grandchildren. They all go up on the fireplace for the holidays.

>> Ashley Cradduck of Lincoln said her family stockings were made from a quilt her antique-hunting parents had found. Since all the stockings were similar and there wasn’t a place for a name, Santa was guided by Post-It notes attached to each one.

The red in the stockings faded to pink, but no one was willing to give up the stockings. It wasn’t until the quilted loops used to hang them finally became threadbare that those quilted stockings were retired — but they’re still treasured.

>> An unmarried aunt who grew up on a farm near Blair, Neb., began making Christmas stockings for her nieces and nephews in the 1940s. Ruth Marie Lippincott continued to make a stocking for each new family member, writes Pat Hunsche of Blair. And soon she was taking orders from friends and neighbors for stockings. Hunsche said that by the time Aunt Ruth died in 2002 at age 100, she had made 1,998 Christmas stockings. Now other family members have taken up sock-making for the younger generations.

>> Karyn Overbeck of Omaha was born on Dec. 22, 1966. Three days later, each baby was brought to his or her mother in a red and white flannel stocking. “I still hang that stocking every Christmas, and my kids marvel that I used to fit in it,” she writes.

>> Linda Tonack started the stocking tradition in her family by making jumbo-sized versions for her children. She and her husband set out the stockings, filled with about 20 items each, every Christmas Eve after church, and they are the first things opened on Christmas morning as the family has orange Danish and juice.

>> Marles Nicholls of the Elkhorn area of Omaha sent a stocking every year to her first grandchild, Lucy Cecelia Salazar. Through the years there have been fabric stockings, paper stockings, knit stockings, stocking boxes, and candle stockings. The 1995 stocking, the year the Nichollses went to London, Lucy received a sequin stocking from Harrods.

Each one comes with a note. For example: “Your 15th Christmas stocking for your collection is this white chenille stocking made from material used as a bedspread when I was a little girl in the 1940s.” The stockings only stopped when Lucy went to Christendom College, where she is now a senior.

>> A neighbor gave Nancy Cooke of Omaha, her brother and her sister knitted stockings 52 years ago. As that generation married, Cooke’s mother picked up knitting needles and continued to make stockings for her grandchildren. And as the great-grandchildren came along, the knitting needles were passed on to Cooke — who had a great deal of trouble learning to turn a heal. So far 27 stockings have been knitted from the same pattern.

>> Linda Kuhlmeyer of Blair recently completed a stocking for her grandson, Ethan, who is 9 months old. In the past, she made stockings for her daughters when they were little, and she made fleece stockings for every family member with his or her favorite sports team represented on them.

>> Julie Ford’s quilted stockings began in 1998 when the family moved to its current address. In addition to family members, exchange students the family hosted also received stockings, so they have gone to Thailand, the Philippines, Spain, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Norway and Kazakhstan.

Contact the writer: 402-444-1067,

Contact the writer: Carol Bicak    |   402-444-1067

Carol writes about community news, local profiles, the arts and books. She also covers the zoo.

Author Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies at 87
Archives: So many wonderful old Omaha photos
UNL students make dancing robot drones
Annie, this woman I paid for sex years ago is now a co-worker
Saying ‘stranger danger’ doesn’t always work, instead be direct with your child
Momaha: 10 ways to boost a kid's confidence
Tips, recipes on how to spice up your traditional Easter ham
Momaha: A lesson in balance for mom after ballet
Dubious list says Omaha's the second-most-spirited city in the U.S., whatever that means
Live Well Nebraska: Bellevue man named one of hottest fitness trainers in America
Annie, my husband walked out on me, and now I love his brother
Review: ‘Heaven is for Real’ leaves it to viewer to interpret its story
Aw, geez. 'Fargo' has a new psycho
Is this Omaha's most incredible Easter egg tree?
Omaha, Lincoln both set record lows; some fruit trees may have been damaged
Grand Island body shop owner models car after Coney dog
What to Watch: 'Fargo,' 'New Girl'
'Last Supper' quilt makes its way to Nebraska
Caravan’s steampunk ‘Fantasticks’ to pitch its tent in Iowa
Cleveland Evans: Emma blossomed from medieval roots
Annie, I'm worried my fiancée will go back to her group sex ways
Number of stay-at-home moms on the rise, it’s not who you think
Assemble the minions! How to make weird but cool Easter crafts
Changes on World-Herald comics page
Annie, my 26-year-old son has no interest in getting a job
< >
Cleveland Evans: From a moody nickname to the Ninja Turtles’ bestie
In honor of April 1, this column’s about Murgatroyd and Amphelisia.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
Jump to a blog:
< >
We Love Weddings blog
W.E. Love Weddings is about everything Omaha and everything weddings by the editors of Wedding Essentials Magazine.
Weddings and engagements
Share your exciting news with your community by placing an announcement today.
Inspired Home Omaha magazine
Sign up today to get the latest edition of Omaha's best magazine for local living, home entertainment, fashion and travel!
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »