shining lights and quiet nights

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We’re less than a week out from Christmas, which hardly seems possible.  I think I maybe finally found the knack of not going overboard on spending for my family this year.  I’m a gifter.  I like to give gifts.

For a lot of people, this time of year can be difficult.  The days are short. The nights are long.  We try to compensate with lights.  We put them on our trees, we put them on our house.  For me, it’s candles.  I love to fill my living room with candles during the holiday season.

It’s a form of what we call “sympathetic magic,” the act of calling something to you by imitation.  What we’re longing for is the sun, so we light our lives up with artificial light to tempt it to return.

The only thing I like better than candles lit against the cold dark of winter, is the cold dark of winter itself.  The winter solstice is Friday, the day of the longest night.  Every day after that the days will grow slowly longer and the wheel will turn, spring will come.  There will be candles in the early evening, but before I go to bed, I will put them all out and spend some time alone in that quiet that only comes in the dark.

It’s a good time to do a self-inventory, to judge your progress against goals, to adjust your attitude toward yourself and others.  Preparation, for you to return with the sun and ready yourself for the growth to come.

At least, that’s my solstice tradition.  Followed on Christmas with family time, food and gift giving.  I hope that however you celebrate, and whatever you celebrate, that this season of good will finds you happy, healthy and hopeful, Readers.

I am more grateful for all of you than you will ever know.

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