Tonight is the Eve of Epiphany, which makes tomorrow Twelfth Night. Another “homestead” Christmas season draws to an end.
This has been our eighth Christmas here, counting the first one, when we traveled from our home in Juneau to celebrate on our new land. You can see photos of that year on our page, “Little Christmas on the Homestead.”
The previous Christmas holds significance for us as well. We first saw the property at the beginning of our 2004 holiday season (see First View: A Homestead Made Holiday). We spent that Christmas with my sisters where they were stationed in Georgia. The evening we arrived at their home, we learned that our offer on the property had been accepted. It was the best of many wonderful gifts we received that year.
In the past, Aly would put out her shoe tonight for a last Christmas gift, this one brought by the Wise men. She adopted this Spanish custom years ago (see Twelfth Night Brings Christmas to a Close). Now, of course, she’s away at college.
As usual, as the season draws to a close, we’re somewhat eagerly anticipating the return to the everyday, as outlined in the essay, The Key to Simple Living: Appreciating the Present. However, this year, I’m looking a little further forward. I’m already laying plans for the next Christmas season.
This year we had a few setbacks that kept us from keeping the kind of Christmas we might wish. I’m determined to keep that from happening next year. Accordingly, I’m already scheduling events in my Franklin Planner, in hopes of getting it all done in the proper time.
I also recently learned that James Howard Kunstler will release his new book in August. I spoke of it in the essay Deadlines. I’ve learned that it will be called A History of the Future: A World Made By Hand Novel (you ought to be able to preorder it at your local independent bookstore). I see that the story takes place at Christmas time. I’ll read it next Christmas, hopefully on audiobook, if it’s available by then. So, before this year’s Yuletide has passed, I’m already lining up some of my seasonal, recreational reading for the next one.
Mostly, though, I’m thinking more short term. My focus is on getting back to the tasks I’ve set aside or let slide during the season, not the least of which is finalizing the audiobook version of my latest book. We should probably make a couple new batches of soap. There’s also new music to explore and new books to read, not to mention a renewed focus on the everyday workings of the homestead. Like the lunar tides, life ebbs, then flows in a never ending cycle.