Sepia-toned Christmas Treasures

I can’t believe that Christmas 2022 is behind us. As cliché as I know it sounds, time really does go by faster and faster as we age. My husband and I were looking back on everything that happened this year, as we cleared the festive table and any last remaining signs of our Christmas Day guests, gifts and meal. 

In January of this year, we began packing up our house to move to a then-unknown home. We finally moved into the house of our dreams six months later, after month-long stays at AirBnbs around the state. Needless to say, that was a stressful time for us, but we had set a goal and had worked together to achieve it. That was a good feeling, in spite of the fact that we’re not movers.

The second half of this year was spent settling into our new home, making it ours, establishing new routines, working, and spending time with friends and family. This year is ending on a good note, in other words. Still, there’s always a bit of nostalgic melancholy for me when Christmas is over. I’m not sure why. Do you ever feel that way? 

I do love the Christmas season. In fact, I love the entire last three months of the year. Halloween and Thanksgiving build to my absolute favorite holiday, and the new year follows shortly after. Chapters end, new ones begin, and all of it tugs at my heart strings.

This year, we had our children, their significant others, spouses, and their children for both Thanksgiving and for Christmas. The last of our parents passed away this year – my husband’s mother left us in July at age 88. There’s something significant about that fact, too. Now, my husband and I are the “grands,” the “elderly,” the “oldest generation” left in our family. I’m still mulling how I feel about that. It’s a sobering thought.

On a much lighter note, we got to spend so much time with our granddaughter during the holidays. The excitement of a three-year-old during the month of December is unparalleled, and it’s highly contagious. Every moment we had with her was spent baking, watching Christmas movies, doing Christmas activities, and generally just having fun. Her little heart added so much to our Christmas; it was truly heaven.

The day has passed, and we will wait in the wings for a few days for New Year’s Eve. Typically, we always stay home and enjoy an intimate dinner together, just my husband and me, on the eve of the dawning year. Inevitably, we’ll reflect and really feel everything that took place over the past few weeks. We’ll smile, we’ll share our concerns, we’ll talk about our goals for the coming year, and we’ll agree to close a chapter or two. 

Nostalgia. Melancholy. Perhaps as we age they become as interwoven as tinsel and champagne at this time of year. I’m finding, however that they hang around a bit longer than the sparkle and bubbles do, and that’s OK. 

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