The house is all decorated for Christmas. The girls and I have been steadily working on it for a couple of weeks now. I’m not the type of person who needs to have a magazine-ready home, with themed trees in every room, but I do feel the need to have a cheerful and bright space during these dark winter months, before the seed catalogs start arriving in February with all their promise of spring.
To that end, we’ve hung strands of white lights up around the windows, and boughs of fragrant spruce on any and all available surfaces. I light all the candles when the first shadows of night start falling, and I try to make sure there is always a pot of our fresh summer-pressed cider warming on the back of the stove (although last night it was Tom and Jerry’s, and it was perfection).
I know Christmas isn’t everybody’s thing, and if it is it means something different to everyone. My family isn’t religious, and we try very hard not to be overly materialistic (my girls are getting four presents each from us: two toys, a book and a new yumbox for school). For us, the magic, the coziness, the anticipation and the precious time spent with far-flung family members are what really matters.
And the joy of getting out all those packed-away decorations and making the house extra special for even just a little while, that doesn’t hurt much either.