Friday, December 09, 2005

The Smells Of Christmas

I wish I could package and send every one of you a sample of the smells in my kitchen right now. My daughter by choice spent yesterday and today with me, doing our Christmas baking together. We are far from done, but the smells and the camaraderie and the joy and laughter are so thick you could cut and serve it. Pity I can not share it as I would like.

When my health deteriorated to the point that I can no longer do all the things I used to, I thought my life was over, but I have learned that the old skills and knowledge and stories from another time are also valuable and I can make memories for children that will last them a life time. I can share the magic, and help it to go on and on. I don't need to be physically fit to do this, I only need the will and desire to share. How many of us think that we have reached a point where we are no longer worthy of love and able to contribute to our families, friends and society in general? I did, but have learned so much since then. I have learned that it is important to share myself, not just my efforts. I have learned that people enjoy spending time with me, even if they have to do almost all the work of baking (or anything else) but they value my spirit, my knowledge and lore.

Tomorrow morning her girls (ages 8 and 6) will join us for the first of two cookie baking days. This one will be peanut butter cookies and the other one will be ginger snaps. Both batters hold up well to a lot of mauling and still taste great. Both have no egg so our allergic members will not get sick.

We are in the middle of a snow storm that threatens a foot or more of snow and the girls are going to cut their tree down this evening. Can you think of anything more magical?

Christmas is such a bitter-sweet season in so many ways. Not only do we mourn those who have gone before and will not be with us at this season, we mourn those who may be here now but not for the next year. We despair because the season has become so commercial, and most of us certainly can't keep up to the Joneses, and would not want to even if we could. Sometimes we spend so much time thinking about what we don't have that we forget our very real blessings.

How many of us know older people who are basically alone in this season but have a wealth of history and experience that they would be so very pleased to share if anyone stopped to notice that they are worthy of attention and consideration. How many of us know a lot of the old ways that we could bring a little of it back into our lives and the lives of our families. Someone told me they were going to take their young brother to a shelter to serve Christmas Dinner with him. The idea of teaching children the value of giving, and particularly giving of themselves is wonderful.

I wish you all the joys of the season, and the desire to try something old!



Beard said...

Hello Zareba,

I would say that you packaged it just fine. Thanks for the holiday cheer.

Zareba said...

You're welcome, Beard. I wish you a wonderful Christmas, filled with love and laughter...and all the traditional smells. Hope you are able to pass on some of your memories as well.