I finally finished putting away the last of the Christmas decorations. Please tell me I'm not the only one. As much as I enjoy decorating for the holidays, I just do not enjoy putting it all away. I do like when the last box has been packed away and there is that 'aaahhhh!' moment where things are clear and I can see the walls again, however. Very much. One tradition that I started many years ago was to write sort of a 'year end summary' as I put the last ornament away. It started on bits of cardboard ornament boxes. I'd ask everyone to tell me what they remember most from the year, or any significant things they'd like to write down. Nothing fancy, just short little things about family, school, current events. Little snippets of our everyday life. Precious everyday life. Little joys, big joys, accomplishments, job changes, puppies born, beloved pets who have gone to the rainbow bridge, moves, births, what car we were driving, passing of dear loved ones, all recorded in whatever was available to write with. Green Flair felt-tip pens and Sharpie markers, red crayons and pencils have all been summoned to scribe what came to mind on that day. Then we'd all sign our names.
We'd sign the back of the Christmas tree box, the Shiny Brite ornament box, the paper plate, the Christmas card envelope, the back of the car insurance bill, whatever was used to document the year. In my mind I have envisioned the most beautiful book that all of these memories should go into. But when I see the evolution of a pre-schooler's carefully crayoned name to the quick flick of a teenager's pen written on the pieces of the reality that surrounds us, I can't imagine any fancy velvet book could make these memories any sweeter. As I wrap each ornament, whether hand made by a child or handed down from Grandma or a gift from a friend,I know that when the season comes back around; a memory will surround me as once again it is placed it on the tree. I think that is part of why we all love to decorate so much, don't you? It is about so much more than just decorating. Because our boxes hold so much more than just ornaments. -CS ^..^