21 December 2010

Welcome Winter!

We're celebrating the winter solstice today. If you don't observe one of the many religious holidays that occur this time of year, it can be a little hard to come up with a "How to Celebrate" template. Fortunately for us, a lot of the holiday symbols aren't inherently religious. Evergreens? Check. Holly? Check. Mistletoe? Check. Wreaths? Check. Sparkly lights? Check. Frost? Snow? Icicles? No problem. Presents? Anytime. Over the years we've incorporated these things with other bits from here and there into a holiday observation of which we have become rather fond. 

One of the things we do, and I don't remember whose crazy idea this was, is to experience the shortest day of the year by not using artificial light. We get up when it's light which, here in the Pacific Northwest, means we get to sleep in. We use whatever light is available during the day, and plan to be done with whatever we're doing by the time it gets dark. Since, here in the Pacific Northwest, this comes pretty darn early, the person responsible for the holiday dinner has to do some pretty intricate planning. If nothing else, by midmorning you realize that it's pretty much a reflex to turn on the light when you go in the bathroom.

As it gets dark, we listen to music because there's not much else you can do without turning on the lights. When it's dark, we light the candles, light the fire, put the tin sun ornament on the tree, open the wine, exchange presents, eat dinner, and all that.

It may not be exactly what everybody else celebrates this time of year, or exactly the way anybody else celebrates it, but we're OK with that. For us, it's all about love and family and eating too much and presents the recipient will need to return and the days starting to get longer. Not necessarily in that order.

It's getting dark. I wonder how Scarecrow is doing with dinner?

...rise up, Jock, and sing your song,
For the summer is short and the winter long,
Let's all join hands and form a chain
'Til the leaves of springtime bloom again.


  1. Scarecrow just stuck his head in the door to say the kitchen is not on fire. I'm trying to find this reassuring.

  2. Zoom - that's hardcore way of celebrating Solstice but I like. I like to sit by the fire and write down goals/intentions for the next year, draw some Runes, things like that. Missed the fire this year.

  3. I hope he doesn't mean that dinner is on fire! It's good that the kitchen isn't, though, so it
    s wise to be reassured.

  4. I like the celebration! I'll need to think abut it for next year!
    Meery Christmas!

  5. I absolutely love that idea! If nothing else, you will learn to appreciate the light!

    I'd want a flashlight though...so I can shine it on the person who is talking. I can't lipread in the dark. HA!