It's Christmas time.
How do I know?
Well, there are a few clues that have found their way into my musings.
#1) Thanksgiving is over and done with. Mine was spent with family that I haven't seen in years, and although that makes for awkward conversations because you often don't know what the heck to talk about to someone you haven't spoken to in a decade, especially when there are 60+ people present, it also means that, heck, you get to talk to people you haven't in ten years! It's a strange thing, when the elders in your family transform from the important and aloof head honchos to something closer to peers - people who you can really talk to.
That's a problem with our world here in the break-neck-paced US of A. Not many people really talk to each other.
Anyway, all in all it was good times. And T and I neatly avoided both offense and tummy aches by having just a little of the holiday carnivorous fare. (bring more collard greens my way, they were AMAZING)
Being a vegger isn't easy at holiday time, lemmetellya.
#2) When we arrived in Hazleton on Friday, after a morning of Black Friday shopping (up at 3:30 and back in bed by a quarter to seven - there wasn't much I needed this year in stores. Ebay's now my best friend. Seriously. Not to mentioned things remembered, red envelope, overstock, etsy, can you tell I'm shopping online? SO convenient), and an afternoon of driving (barely skirting the Nothing, Never Ending Story style, and happy to only have a little hail splashing our windshield), the lights and decorations were up! I gasped in delight at the town center's tree, glowing from bottom to top, and I cooed in delight at the sweet holiday reminders hiding in sweet places all over T's parents' house. Warm and cozy. Just right. Especially when I realized that I'd left all of my winter coats down in Richmond. I thought I'd cry. It was a sad moment....
#3) I'm wearing my winter smell as of roughly two weeks ago and LOVING it. It's the little things, ya know?
#4) We watched Love Actually last night. After I watched it, laughing and crying, for the first time in '04, on a warm Floridian couch after the movie had been rented from Netflix (I'll admit it, I was late on the Love Actually bandwagon but I've made up for it since), it has been a permanent staple of my holiday season. Christmas hasn't started until I've seen 11-year-old Sam say "let's go get the sh*t kicked out of us by love"... It may not make sense, but it's the way things just are in the noggin. I need some Hugh Grant dancing to the Pointer Sisters, and I'm ready to go. His particular limp-shouldered-shuffle reminds me of my Dad. Sorry Hugh.
And Dad :)
So, as described above, the Christmas season has officially arrived for me. What about you? What are your go-to signs that it's time to break out the egg nog and peppermint bark?
"Each friend represents a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born."