as the last of the brilliantredgoldenyellowandburntorange leaves fell from the trees, the first of the softwetwonderfulwhite snow drifted gently down from the sky and onto my tuque covered head, and  shoppers in search of the perfect gift began to fill up my lovely new pedestrian neighbourhood,  i had three thoughts running through my head:

this is my second single christmas.  my first in my new place.  how do i want to spend it?

the urge to do all new was strong.  escaping also crossed my mind (my adventures this summer having served to increase, rather than reduce, my desire to journey the world).  in the end, i landed on reclaiming.

despite not being a terribly religious person (i believe there are forces greater than those before my eyes, just not sure i agree any one religion has nailed the details on what it / they are), there are some aspects of christmas i adore.

last year i stumbled through the motions.  or skipped them altogether.

this year, i took them back.  three of my favs (in no particular order):

1) cards.  love in envelopes.  adore.

last saturday i tucked myself into a corner table at the bridgehead coffee shop near my condo and, bathed in the afternoon sunlight, composed holiday wishes to old friends and new.

2) baking.  edible love.  adore.

measuring, mixing, rolling, decorating, and delivering made for many a golden moment over the past couple of weeks.  recipe for the chocolateoatmealgoodness at the bottom taken from one of my fav blogs.

3) exchanging gifts with friends and family.  wrapped up love.  adore.

my annual stocking exchange with my former uni roommates is one of my favourite holiday gift exchanges each year.  $40 limit. one person’s stocking to fill.  a gathering involving good food, laughter and love.

last year i missed it.  so happy to be reunited with this tradition this year.  and to welcome our first new member in years (my friend K’s brand new beautiful baby girl) with a glass of bubbles.

happy holidays, dear readers.  i hope that you, like me, find touches of gold as you grab hold of your favourite holiday moments.  and if for some reason you can’t, that you take heart in knowing that there’s always next year.

’tis the season to reclaim.