It's time for Thanksgiving once again, and then the winter holiday season will be fully upon us. I have to say - I love holidays! I often enjoy the preparations as much as the celebrations themselves. The holidays are a time of traditions, and although things may seem the same each year, if you look closely they differ slightly as we spiral around and around.
I just started listening, while driving, to one of the radio stations that plays Christmas music. Yes, we're Pagan, but we celebrate a secular Christmas as well as Yule/Winter Solstice. When I grew up, my family were atheists and agnostics, so our Christmas has always been about family, sharing, and fun without the religious focus. Anyway, as I listened to the familiar and much-loved tunes (I especially enjoy the ones from the 1940's and 50's), the first thing that came to mind was all the fun times I've had at this time of year. Next, I thought of last December, which was tough because of the death of our cat Huzzah and my Dad's heart attack (on Christmas Eve) and resulting surgery. I'm thankful that this year Dad is doing well and getting great reports from his doctor.
Tonight I was in ritual space with a lovely group of women. I commented to one of them that I was glad we've been in circle together twice within one month, after a long period of not seeing each other much at all. She agreed, and pointed out that we'll be doing it again at Yule. It's wonderful to reconnect with her; we used to be in a circle together that met regularly. That circle disbanded, and as we both have homeschooled kids and full lives, we just got busy. It's lovely that we've spiraled around again to a place where we're sharing sacred space.
We're welcoming some new people to our Thanksgiving table this year, too. My brother has fallen in love (I'm SO excited for him) so his beloved (who is very sweet and fun) will join us, along with her college-age daughter. And BlackLion invited his Dad and step-Mom to feast with us, since his brother is out of town and they hadn't made other plans. We'll also have most of the usual clan, and I'm sure it will be a delicious feast with lots of laughter and joy.
As I get older, I now worry less about having everything perfect for "the big day" and focus more on enjoying the time spent with friends and family. I'm glad the spiral has brought us back around to the winter holidays. I wish you and yours health, happiness and bounty. Blessed Be!