My favorite thing to do the day after Thanksgiving - which is my favorite holiday EVER - is to clean the house, decorate with lights, break out the holiday music and write out holiday cards. (Yes, "holiday" cards - Christmas, Solstice, Hanukkah - whatever people choose to celebrate this time of year, I honor.) Somehow, this little post-Thanksgiving ritual sets the whole winter holiday mood for me and has for the last 20 years.
This year will be different. Part of the annual holiday cards are life updates - and I really don't feel like writing out 40 times what a life-altering, roller coaster this year has been - especially the bad stuff. I keep joking that I did not realize the Mayan prophesy was really just about my life being over!
But my life is not over. And I'm tired of being sad. So I'm doing something different this year. This year, I'm not doing holiday cards at all. No cards with Santa or pine trees or candy canes on them at all. Instead, I'm going to say thank you to all the amazing people who have made my life so much better this year. Some will be a quick text, some an e-mail but a lot of people are going to get a written thank you note on pretty stationery in my "doubles as an unbreakable code" handwriting.
Holiday music is likely to still be playing in the background. (Hello, my Dixieland Ramblers - Gumbo Christmas!) I'll probably still be singing off-key. The house will be clean but holiday lights may or may not be up. A holiday candle is likely to be scenting the air with cinnamon. And I'm scheduling it for next week rather than tomorrow because I need some new traditions.
So, if you are reading this - thank you. Knowing my words mean something to someone else is an amazing feeling. I hope someone in your life gives you the gift of feeling amazing. I hope 2013 finds us all with a deeper understanding of what it means to be loved. And when you get the cards, call me if you need help translating my handwriting!
Take-away - Get out your pen and paper. Find a stamp. Look up an address. Take 5 minutes and thank someone who makes your world better.
(Soundtrack: Dido - Thank you. And any holiday song you like!)