Thursday, December 24, 2009

Counting my blessings... and gingerbreads

'Tis the season for gingerbread!

Waldorf Winter Faire Gingerbread (Streng Brothers?)

Whoville Gingerbread (won in a silent auction)

Gingerbread House a la Sela & Dafna!
(Smells & tastes as good as it looks)

Light Cruise Gingerbread Village on Eastern Avenue

Surprisingly Delicious Gingerbread in a Box

... and Shopping Gingerbread
Warm wishes for a sweet & joyful holiday!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I LOVE Christmas

I love Christmas. I didn't realize how much I loved Christmas until S loved Christmas. We really do it up for Christmas. And, we don't feel run ragged by it. I love that we seem to have settled into our favorite traditions. We cut down a tree (a silver tip -- our favorite), we decorate it -- and the house. We get two trees. (Last year we bought a 3rd for the porch because it was $1.50 & way too cute to pass up.) As we unpack our Christmas things, we greet them as dear friends who have been away from us. We bake, we craft, we donate, we volunteer. We shop, we wrap, we make tags, we make gift wrap (not in that order!). We make gifts for friends and for each other. We have 3 different advent calendars! We go to the Nutcracker, a Waldorf winter faire, and we go for "light cruises." We live on Christmas music. We watch Christmas movies and specials. (We even watched the Garfield one this year... yikes.) We add to our Santa collection, our snowman collection, and our Christmas tree collection. We read Christmas books. We buy more Christmas books. (Little House Christmas Stories has been a very sweet addition this year -- I highly recommend it.) We make a gingerbread house (or two). We eat candy canes and drink hot cocoa. Lots of hot cocoa. Everything is celebrated with hot cocoa in December. This year I chose a book for book club with a winter theme (Mr. Popper's Penguins, just in case I could squeeze in a little more winter fun. It worked -- I have a great excuse to use the igloo cake pan I bought last year!).
We love celebrating so much, we've branched out this year. S asked if we could light Hanukkah candles. So we are -- with the most beautiful Hanukkah candles I've ever seen. The colors are beautiful and soft, they smell so good (beeswax) and even feel good to touch. We also celebrated St. Lucia's Day with St. Lucia buns (inspired by Kirsten, the American Girl who is a Swedish immigrant). We are neither Jewish nor Swedish. Just very festive, apparently.

Here I go...

I have a blog. Why?? Why am I doing this?? I have been toying around with the idea for a while now, but I still can't answer this question! And I've really thought about it. If you know me, you believe me when I say that. I thought I would do it. Then I thought I certainly would NOT do it. Then, yes, I will. No. You get the idea.

Then Christmas time came, and I was inspired. December always does that to me -- and to my daughter, S, too! I was spending so much time checking out others' blogs and thought, "I'm going to do it!" And I quickly registered before I could analyze it (again).

But the question still begs to be answered: why??? Will it simply end up as a "laundry list" of sorts? Like the hundreds I could probably uncover around my house, of things that need to be done, have already been done, want to be done. (I do love lists.) That doesn't sound quite right. And certainly not something I want to subject anyone else to. While I love the satisfaction of a good list, I don't assume that's a passion for everyone : D Perhaps I feel like doing it so that I can share things that others may find interesting? I know I use the web this way. The time others have taken to share their projects has contributed to our family life -- perhaps I could contribute in some small way to others' family lives? Does having a blog meet my need for creating something? With an infant, my ability to "create" is veeeery limited. Maybe that's it?

Maybe by taking a bit of time to post about what we're doing, I'll be more likely to really notice all the good stuff we do. Life can get so busy these days. And just getting us all fed seems like it takes so much time and energy lately. Maybe it creates a little space where I can hold onto moments and savor them just a little longer than I can in real time. Maybe it's a way to organize my thoughts? (Sounds like a stretch, but again, if you know me, that probably makes a lot of sense!) Maybe it's another way of connecting with others -- with friends near and far?

Or maybe, just maybe, there doesn't need to be a reason at all?? I might just be on to something with that one...