The work is done, okay, mostly by my beloved wife, but it is so. The presents are wrapped, yes, I helped, and the house is decorated from front to back. I sit now in my chair admiring our tree, lit with white lights that make me think of stars held within the night sky. It is a tree My Beloved and I have always cherished.
Beside it stands the mantle, strung with fresh pine garland. Okay, it's probably wilting a little bit. That's what happens when you cut a live plant and let it sit for weeks indoors. It wilts some. However, the scent of pine waffles through our abode. It frames the stockings hung by the chimney with care, yes, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon will be there. My job is to fill My Beloved's stocking as she is the hidden Santa within our home.
Our front room has yet another tree, a slim version trimmed in silver and white lights. From above, the room is lit with a gentle glow from garland strung with soft, white lights. It adds a gentle luminescence to our home. One of my favorite decorations is a simple red basked filled with pine cones and a string of white lights buried beneath. All these touches tell me our season is complete.
Today is my favorite day of the year. Nothing surpasses Christmas Eve as I have grown older. Everything is ready. There is a sense of anticipation in the air. Tomorrow, the gifts will be torn to pieces, sometimes literally as my grandson gets so excited. That's what happens to a four-year-old on Christmas day. I look forward to his reactions as much as anything. It is the sparkle of Christmas I remember through his eyes, the times from my past where Christmas has always been a joyous occasion.
There have been many changes in my life over the years, but that has not dampened my spirit. My Sainted Parents are no longer with us but they live on in my memories. Christmas was always a joyous time in their home and I have always tried to live up to their model. This year as well with the passing of my dear brother Donald (North of 50, to many of you), I knew there may be yet another challenge to face for the season. Yet, my heart still holds this day special, something he would be proud of, not only for myself but for his family.
May your Christmas be filled with joy and peace.