Monday, December 9, 2013

Stockings were hung

The presents, except, of course, those from Santa, are stacking up under the tree. Much of the shopping and wrapping is done, thank heavens, what with icy roads and wind chills in the -30 range. Maybe Mother Nature will give us a December thaw for Christmas.
presents under the tree

Once upon a time, I think we used to hang stockings from the fireplace mantle in the downstairs family room. As I remember, we couldn't have a Christmas Eve fire in the fireplace, anyhow, because Santa might get singed if the fire didn't go out in time. I don't recall when or why we started hanging stockings with care on the side of the stairs leading to the tree. Maybe if the daughter person or the better half reads this, one of them (or both) can clue me in and I'll add an update about why the stockings moved.

stockings hung with care

I hope your holidays are as hectic or as peaceful as you want them to be, and filled with as much joy as you can handle (maybe just a smidgen more).

Jeffrey Harrison's poem offers one the the best reasons I've come across for selecting a Christmas tree very carefully. I'd love a nest in ours. I think we've had this happen once or twice over the years.
Winter's peace upon the land     © harrington

Nest

By Jeffrey Harrison
It wasn’t until we got the Christmas tree
into the house and up on the stand
that our daughter discovered a small bird’s nest
tucked among its needled branches.

Amazing, that the nest had made it
all the way from Nova Scotia on a truck
mashed together with hundreds of other trees
without being dislodged or crushed.
And now it made the tree feel wilder,
a balsam fir growing in our living room,
as though at any moment a bird might flutter
through the house and return to the nest.

And yet, because we’d brought the tree indoors,
we’d turned the nest into the first ornament.
So we wound the tree with strings of lights,
draped it with strands of red beads,

and added the other ornaments, then dropped
two small brass bells into the nest, like eggs
containing music, and hung a painted goldfinch
from the branch above, as if to keep them warm.

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