Fall is melting into winter. Winter being a rather broad term to use in Southern California, more like the slightly less sunny, a little more rainy, cooler season that likes to dress up as winter in the evenings when the temperature drops. I am not a huge fan of winter so I can’t say that I am too upset, but part of me does crave that first snow fall. The one where you look out the frosted window in a room filled with christmas bulbs and candle light. You stand, holding a mug of coffee or coco (if you are a ninny, just kidding I love coco, but preferably when spiked with espresso, which I have fondly dubbed “the poor mans mocha”) and you watch, as delicate flake after delicate flake floats gently to the ground.
Everything is far more beautiful in memory. I have been getting lost in memories lately. They move seamlessly through my mind, taking me from childhood, to adulthood in one fluid motion, only pausing on moments that make my racing heart be still.
I think about setting up the Christmas tree as a small child, it was my very favorite. I would sit in the glow of the tree and fall asleep, curled between the arms of my dads favorite chair, against my little mermaid pillow, under my favorite blanket, in my flannel nightgown.
I think of spending the holidays with friends. Walking down the stairs in a house so familiar and yet one I had never visited until the day before… feeling at home, feeling like all was right in the world… it didn’t hurt that they had a Family Stone approach to the coffee pot, you finish it, you start a new one; my kind of people. Snuggled on the couch after dinner, eating more than we could have possibly consumed, after playing games where we laughed until we cried, we piled on top of each other and watched Holiday Inn and sighed for the perfection of it all.
I think of father/daughter camp in Northern Michigan. Crisp air, bunk beds, hooded sweatshirts, too much caffeine and card games that lasted until the wee-hours of the morning. Canoe trips, walks through the woods while twigs snapped and leaves crunched under heavy boots. Fire side moments fading over time.
I think of wrapping presents in the living room under christmas lights with Elf playing in the background. Rolls of brown and white paper, red ribbon, moss and a glue gun. Gifts being transformed, patiently waiting to be opened by anxious hands.
I think of laughter. I think of parties where people are drunk on the moment (and maybe a little on whiskey and wine). Of different friends all in one room, listening to their favorite holiday songs being played by the ones they love most. The magic building moment by moment, filling the room with love and joy, peace on earth, and goodwill toward men. Having a sing along to Jingle Bell Rock to end the evening certainly made it all the more memorable.
Wrapped in a blanket sipping hot coffee, festive music playing softly while the Christmas lights glow… I am caught, wandering through these memories.
The holiday season can do that to you in so many ways…what, dear reader, are some of your favorite moments from this time of year?