Stretching Christmas

I’m always so sad to see Christmas go. So I try to make it last as long as I can. I leave the Christmas tree up through January (reasoning that the crystal snowflakes and glittery silver pinecone ornaments make it a “Winter” tree). I move the art Deco glass block, filled with fairy lights and tied with a shiny white ribbon, into the bedroom and use it as a nightlight right up until Valentine’s Day (it provides the most flattering ambient light). And I’ve even been known to make a bonus batch of Chex Mix — or two (though never beyond February).

As for the rest of the trappings, I take down the stockings, carefully pack away all the Yuletide tchotchkes, gather up the holiday wrap and ribbons, and stow the entire lot in the loft out in the garage.

My uncle's card selection proves, once again, that he knows me only too well.

Then I’m ready to sit down at the kitchen table to sort through the season’s greetings.

I set aside a whole day to look at the cards and letters, to enjoy the artwork and soak up the sentiment of each piece, and to appreciate the tenderness behind it. If somebody has had a rough year, I’ll dash off a note just to let them know I care. If someone has enjoyed exceptional achievement, I’ll write to them, too, with my heartfelt congratulations.

Mostly, though, I hold each card or each note and think about the person on the other end of that greeting, recalling some wonderful shared moment in time. It’s a true connect. And that’s the thing that really makes me feel like Christmas hasn’t gone at all….

So, on this Holy Day, the Epiphany, I’m still having myself a merry Little Christmas.  Hope you are, too.

a peep out of you