joyous wishes of the season to you all!

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This is a time of renewal and reflection. The sun is at its nadir and then the days start to get longer. It’s why there are so many holidays this time of year, not to mention why the calendar most of us use ends and starts over around now.

Wrenn and I have had a wonderful holiday season so far. There’s a tinge of sadness, as it’s our first without Dale, but there’s also a great deal of joy, as Wrenn and I are both happy and healthy and actually doing well.

We did our usual Christmas Eve at my parents’ house. This has gone from a humongous family occasion with sometimes upwards of twenty people to a much more cozy affair, with just the Forebearance, me and Wrenn, and the Godmommy. But the menu remains the same: chicken consommé and lasagne. (My mother makes the best lasagne ever. Period.) Today we’re off to the Godmommy’s for roast beast with the same crowd (we do our gift exchange with her today as well). Saturday two of my aunts and a couple of my cousins and their families are coming over for an end-of-year gathering of happiness. And on New Year’s Eve we get together with many of our dearest friends to exchange more gifts and ring in the new year.

Our main gifts this year were new phones from three of the four parents; the fourth parent renewed our memberships to the New York Botanical Gardens and the NYC zoos. In addition, we got some small gifts from the four of them, including an annotated edition of Frankenstein for me, some soaps and lotions for Wrenn, nifty socks for both of us, and a bag of chocolate-covered gummi bears for whoever’s brave enough to try those. (It was a gag gift, truly.) Meanwhile, we gave my mother an alabaster box with a blue rose on it that we got in Volterra, Italy (before she retired, my mother’s editing business was called Blue Roses), my father an Audible gift card (he loooooooves audiobooks), and John a bottle of wine from one of the wineries we visited in Tuscany. (Helga’s combined birthday and Christmas presents were a new iPad from several of us, though we also gave her a couple of Ghirardelli dark chocolate bars.)

I hope all of you are having a jolly, joyous, wonderful holiday season.

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