With the holidays approaching, do “visions of sugarplums dance in your head? ” No? Me either. I have an always-held vision, however, that involves making our home very festive for Christmas and into the New Year. In the past that has started with getting out big plastic bins of ornaments from too-high closet shelves and placing the contents strategically throughout the house.
This year we have a more age-friendly view of the world and I find myself approaching holiday decorating in new ways.
The large noble fir that used to occupy at least one third of the living room area, and greatly reduced seating options for visiting friends, has been replaced by a tasteful, metal-tree kiosk filled with aromatic herbs and spices. It rests it on our coffee table in front of the fireplace; the nearby fire’s warmth assures a cinnamon aroma permeates the house. We have a purchased a multitude of big, bright-red poinsettias that can be enjoyed now and later routed to home-bound neighbors as gifts– just before we leave for faraway holiday visits with our children. These same children will assuredly have seven-foot trees strewn with popcorn and cranberries. Our early gifting to them this year will include some of the best of our now-unused ornaments– in some instances accompanied by handwritten stories about a particular tree bauble.Our vow is to thoughtfully offer, but not over-sell, long-time Christmas traditions –young families need to establish their own. And one of the joys of aging is watching your children and their children evolve and celebrate…New Year to New Year. Hallelujah!
This year I have a few age-friendly holiday goals. Culling the boxes of hold-over Christmas items from five bins to only one bin, that will be located in a more easy-access area for future retrieval, is my first goal. Plan progressing well. Locating and consolidating the best family Christmas recipes and putting them on a thumb drive for each of our three children is a second goal . Yet another meaningful Christmas gift to grown children with families who, at some point in the future just might want to know how to make Grandma Dee’s rice pudding with the single lucky almond.
And a third goal–not sure yet. In the age-friendly vein, it might involve buying instead of making Christmas cookies this year or just spending an afternoon sitting in a chair, Christmas carols playing on Pandora, with a cup of minty tea and my feet elevated–playing scrabble on my ipad with my always-festive husband.