Friday, December 30, 2016
The fridge is jammed, the shelves filled with plastic wrapped plates, cartons of cream, eggnog, and milk and the spoils of last week's dinner parties. I open the door, quickly taking a defensive stance to catch whatever may tumble out. I pour myself a final glass of eggnog of the season, draining the last few ounces - two days past the "best before" date. It tasted delicious and brought an official close to the holiday season for me.
I scan the room with the Christmas decorations and random bits of evidence of our festivities... bits of tissue paper from discarded gift bags and a stack of rogue cookie sheets and casserole dishes that have to be returned to their rightful owners. The walls still resonate with the din of the laughter and chatter that filled the room...and I can't help but reflect.
With my girls now full grown adults with spouses and spices of their own, corralling them all into the same time and space is challenging. But when we manage it, it is blissful. No surprise that as I get older I gain a greater appreciation for these precious moments spent with my girls and the rest of my family. We are a unit and when one of us is missing, we do not feel complete. When we gather together, we celebrate our unity and the comfort and peace that comes with experiencing belonging to something greater than ourselves.
In our midst this year we had our beloved Doris -- ninety-nine with no sign of slowing down. When dad made a little speech and mentioned that next year this time Doris will be 100, she nodded and grinned as she high-fived the crowd. So much to celebrate...
And so I relax on my comfy couch, glass drained with only granules of nutmeg remaining, bundled in my wool wrap enjoying the leftovers of yet another wondrous holiday spent with those who I love so very much. And as I reflect and savour every morsel, I conclude that the memories are almost as good as the first time around. And for all of that, I am eternally grateful.