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2016 12 21 Christmas Interview – Then and Now December 21, 2016

Good evening America, and welcome to this week’s edition of “Then and Now”. I am your host, Holly Snow, and I’m pleased to have you join me tonight, as we take a long overdue look at a man, a very special man, who just might be the most talked about individual on the face of this big, blue marble that we call home…

Before we get started with tonight’s show though, I’d like to extend an extra thanks to one of our amazing Executive Producers, Angel Garland. Without her insight and commitment to her professional craft, tonight’s episode would not be possible.

And now, on with the show.

Tonight it’s my extreme pleasure to bring to you a star among stars, a giver of gifts extraordinaire, a seasonal cup of just enough spice to quench even the biggest thirsts from around the world.

Our center stage guest of honor has been known to go by many names, has been told about in many stories and has found a way to spread a smile to those both young and old, from around the world.

As I said, this amazing guest goes by many names, but perhaps the most famous name that he goes by, in our country, has inspired the countless stories, movies and songs over these past 100 years.

It’s my honor to introduce to you, our very special guest, Santa Claus.

“Why thank you Holly. It’s an honor to be with you.”

Oh my my my, Mr. Claus. The pleasure is indeed all mine. Can I ask you sir if you mind me calling you, Santa?

“Oh heavens no-ho-ho-ho! After all, it is my name, right?”

Why yes it surely is Santa. I must tell you, I’m having a hard time believing that I’m actually sitting here, talking to, you! This, for me, is a dream come true sir.

“Please Holly, call me Santa.”

You’ve got it sir, um, I mean, Santa. Sorry about that.

“Oh don’t you worry a bit now sweetie. I’ll make sure that the boys back at the shop don’t bump you off the, good list. Ho-ho-ho.”

Why thank you Santa. You know, I have a thousand and one questions I’d like to ask you, but my producer is already asking me to possibly move along with the interview, so I guess I’ll work from a list that we had drawn up from the wishes of our own production team.

“Well I guess if you can’t help those that are always helping you, it just doesn’t seem to have that same holiday spirit. Know what I mean Holly?”

Oh Santa, you’re so right. For sure I’d be lost like a pointy eared dentist in a snow bank without the continued support of our amazing crew. From the look on the faces of those in the studio, you are one very popular person. I mean, I’ve never seen Studio 2B so packed before.

“Well, judging from the smiles on the faces, this is one very big, very happy family you have here. I am impressed and honored that you have asked me to join you here tonight.”

Well Santa, it is we who are humbled and honored with your presence here, and with the hand signals I’m getting from my producers, we better get moving on.

“Great! Let’s go kiddo. Ho-ho-ho!:

Ok then Santa. The first question comes from our long time camera man, Donner Seasons. He would like to know, as I’m sure we all would, what is your favorite day of the year?

“Oh my, oh my, ho-ho-ho. You know, I’m fairly sure that I know what a lot of you are thinking right now. I bet a lot of your viewers are shouting at their TV screens, Christmas Eve! Christmas Eve!”

Oh I’m sure you’re right Santa. I mean after all, you are Father Christmas, right?

“Right you are Holly Dear, but surprisingly enough, my favorite day of the year happens to be May 12th.”

Um, May 12th? Ok, we all are wondering why you picked that date sir. I’m sure that a lot of our viewers are scratching their heads, trying to figure this one out.

“Ho-ho-ho. Yes, I imagine so. Truth is, I have many favorite days of the year, but May 12th stands out the most because it’s the day that I met the most beautiful pair of eyes in the world. May 12th is the day I met Mrs. Clause, my special Mama, and after catching a glimpse of those eyes staring straight at me oh so many, many years ago, , well, I’m not sure if everyone believes in love at first sight, but ho-ho-ho oh how it grabbed me like a bag full of wrapped presents.”

“Oh Santa, that’s just such a wonderfully touching story. Tell me though, did Mrs. Claus fall for you in the same fashion as you fell for her?

“Ho-ho-ho! Well I’m sure if you ask her, she might tell you something different, but, one look at that smile of hers, and I knew she felt the same as I did. I mean, how could anyone resist the twinkle in these hazel eyes of mine.”

Ha-ha-ha! I have to tell you Santa, you’re right. There’s just something about those eyes of yours that would melt the heart of the little child inside all of us.

“Oh Holly, that’s mighty sweet of you to say. Ho-ho-ho. I think I’m feeling a little embarrassed. My cheeks must be turning red.”

Why yes they are Santa. Yes, they are the most wonderful shade of red.

“Ho-ho-ho. Up at the North Pole, we call that Rudolph Red.”

Oh that’s precious Santa, absolutely precious. Ok then. Before I get completely spun around with the task at hand, I guess we should move on to question number 2.

“That sounds good Holly. Fire away sweetie.”

This question is from our sound engineer, Mr. Frosty Pane. Dear Santa, if you could receive any gift in the world, what would it be?

Oh ho-ho-ho. Now that’s a question that I haven’t been asked in a whole lotta Christmas Eves.”

Yes Santa. It sure is a good question. One that I’m sure a lot of our audience is wondering as well.

Well Holly, I have to admit that after watching the elves up North, year after year, and being able to see some of the amazing inventions and technological gadgets that they keep coming up with, there still is one particular gift that finds a way to the top of my list, each and every year.”

Santa, I have to tell you, I’m sitting on pins and needles with anticipation of your answer.

“Ho-ho-ho. I bet you are sweetie, I bet you are… You know Holly, as many faces filled with smiles as I get to see each and every year, I’m reminded again and again of just how strong the magic of the season is. Christmas begins in the heart, in the soul, and from there, amazing things begin to happen to those who believe in that magic, in me. All around the world the comfort and joy that Christmas finds a way to bring, well, nothing much can compare. Nothing much, that is, except for one special gift that I can think of, a very special gift that I have the pleasure of receiving each and every year.”

Ok Santa. You have completely grabbed my curiosity. I believe I am joined by all of our viewers when I ask you, Santa, what this gift might be.

“Oh Holly, so many things have graced this old spirit. So many moments of memories, so many baskets full of the simplest things that blend together to make the wonder and imagination come to life. Still though, the most wonderful gift I have ever received is the same gift that I wish to get each and every Christmas. This gift is the wonderment of the night, of Christmas, of a heart full of love being given the same gift that I crave, that I work for, that I have come to know and love with all my heart.

When my gift of flight on Christmas Eve has come to an end, and I am returning to my home up north, I circle around Christmas Town one last time before my team glides into the center of town to touch down. When the sleigh has stopped and I fold my reigns over the front of the sleigh, I take a moment to look around me at the faces surrounding me. I tell you Holly, the sight, well, it takes my breath away each year. The most wonderful gift is seeing the joyful thanks, the proud smiles, the absolute feeling of love from all of the elves, to me, for me, because of the chore that I had the honor to complete. I can’t really put into words how this gift fills my heart, but when I say that the magical feeling is complete, let it be known to hold the truth of Christmas.”

Oh Santa. I am speechless. Completely speechless.

“Ho-ho-ho. I know how you feel my dear. Each and every Christmas, I know exactly how you feel.”

Santa. Dear, dear Santa, I have so much more that I, that we would like to ask you. Are you up for more Dear Santa?

“Oh yes Holly. This is another one of those nights that I hope never ends. Ho-ho-ho.”

As do I Santa. As do I. We’ve got a few more questions to ask our most special guest America. Don’t you go anywhere, as we’ll be right back after a word from our sponsors. I’m Holly Snow, and you’re watching Then and Now.

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2016 12 18 1987 December 18, 2016

There’s one Christmas that I’ll never forget. It didn’t happen when I was a boy, but rather when I was a man, a father of around27 or so.

At the time, through the course of the year, I tried to figure out what held the interest of my son’s imagination, and as usual for those several years that made up his childhood, it was very apparent that he absolutely loved Legos. I guess it was safe to say that this wasn’t a surprise, because I too was very fond of the little building blocks when I was a young boy.

Good toys know how to withstand the test of time, and this was one gift that couldn’t go wrong.

One afternoon while my wife and I were out shopping, I took a hard right and started wandering through the toy section of the store. I soon found myself smack dab in the middle of Lego heaven. One side of the aisle was completely packed with every kind of Lego package you could imagine. Knights and castles and dinosaurs and airplanes and cars and trucks and oh my, what’s this?

I reached out and pulled a rather large box from the shelf. The picture on the box clutched at my attention and didn’t let go.

“What’s that?” my wife spoke as she moved up along side me.

“What’s this?” I smiled as I spoke back. “Why it’s the coolest thing I’ve ever seen.”

I flipped the box around in my arms, trying to take in all of the item that was available. It was a Lego bulldozer, and it contained about a million and a half pieces.

“You getting it for him?” My wife matched my stares towards the box.

I could only think of a one word response to her question. “Yes.”

Needless to say, the box followed us home that evening.

For the next couple weeks leading up to Christmas, I kept pulling the box out of the closet to have another look. The more I looked, the more the present felt like it should be mine, and not my 5 year old son’s. The tug of war had begun, but deep down I knew that as long as it was his gift, I could play with it as much as he did, I mean after all, we lived in the same house, right? The inner workings of an adult mind turned kid.

Well the days wound away, and Christmas inched closer and closer. Come Christmas Eve day, I worked my usual long day, but was transfixed with a spell directly from the North Pole. By the time I returned home that night, the master plan had been firmly planned and all I had to do was set the wheels of the season in motion.

Seven o’clock came, and our son dashed his footy pajamas up over the stairs. Bun, the stuffed rabbit with the long ears, helped my son and I say our prayers, as he usually did.

Fourteen giggles, seven smiles and a couple yawns later, my son closed his eyes to join in on a winter’s night full of dancing dreams. Twelve minutes after that I was standing at the bottom of the stairs waiting and searching for signs that he was fast asleep.

Through the kitchen I ran in a flash, and bound into the living room with a thud and a crash. I scrambled into our bedroom, swung open the closet door, grabbed the Lego box and headed back into the living room.

“You’re not going to wrap that for him?” My wife came into the living room and watched me as I set up a TV tray beside my chair.

“No. I’m gonna put it together for him and set it under the tree.” I cleared a table beside my chair and set the box down onto it. Turning to her, I cocked my head sideways, “What?”

She smiled at me and turned towards the bedroom. “You sure you’re gonna be able to put that all together tonight?”

“Of course I can.” I smugly smiled as I sat down and pulled the TV tray up close to the chair.

The task had begun.

I started in on the bulldozer at seven thirty that Christmas Eve. Let me say that when I mentioned earlier that it had roughly a million and a half pieces, I wasn’t kidding, or so it seemed. Through the evening hours I went from the instructions manual, to the pieces in the box, to the pieces on the tray, to the pieces dancing around in my head, back to the manual. This went on throughout the evening, past midnight, until at roughly 3am the bulldozer was complete. The task was done, and so was I. My brain was fried, my nerves were shot, my hands were shaking and I felt too tired to sleep.

My wife had been fast asleep for a few hours, so I tried to be quiet as a Lego mouse as I crept into the bedroom and slipped under the covers.

I couldn’t get the pieces of blocks out of my head. Single blocks, double blocks, square ones, rectangle ones, pieces with angled tops, pieces with round tops, pieces with no tops, they all came at me, tumbling and spinning through my dreams. The dreams were restless, but they resembled sleep none the less.

“Dad?” Nudge, nudge.

“Daddy?” Shake, nudge.

I rolled over and tried prying my eyes open. “What? Who?” I tried to wake up, but everything was fuzzy and blurry, including my mind.

I could barely make out a smiling face staring at me, point blank.

“Can I get up to see what Santa brought?” He grabbed my shoulder and carefully shook it.

“What time is it?”

There was a pause. “It’s Christmas morning silly. It’s time to get up.”

I rubbed my eyes and looked over at the alarm clock beside me. It was 4:45am.

His mother rolled over to face him. “What time is it?”

Our son stepped back towards the door and shouted. “It’s Christmas Morning Mom! Are you guys gonna get up, or what?”

Fifteen days later I managed to pull myself up from my sleeping slumber, and the three of us made our way into the living room. With a flick of the light switch, the tree lit up and the room burst to life.

“Oh wow!” was all we heard for the next minute or so, as our son made his way around the tree and through the unwrapped gifts that Santa had set around the tree.

My wife and I sat down on the couch as he grabbed one gift, then another, hollering out with each one.

Moving around the tree, he came upon the bulldozer that I had tucked in against a couple wrapped gifts. “Oh man! Cool! Is this for me?”

He tried to pick it up, but it was too bulky for him, so I got up and quickly helped him set it out in the middle of the floor.

“That looks like a bulldozer!” My eyes grew wide as his as I watched him crawl up to the impressive piece of workmanship. “Be careful with it. I’m pretty sure that took Santa’s elves quite a while to build.”

He slowly started rolling it across the floor on its working rubber bulldozer tracks. I smiled and looked over at his mother, who was also smiling.

One of the coolest things about these ingenious building blocks is that as much fun as it is to build stuff, it’s just as much fun to tear them apart. Well, for a kid anyway.

Over the course of Christmas morning, every time I went into the living room, the bulldozer grew smaller and smaller, until it really didn’t resemble a bulldozer , but rather a large pile of mostly yellow blocks.

That was the beginning, and the end of the impressive earth moving device. The pile of yellow blocks did turn into many different things, but never what Santa had left under the tree on that unforgettable Christmas morning of 1987.

Being able to see the expressions of joy on his little face that December 25th morning was one of the best Christmas presents I have ever received. Sometimes the simplest gifts are the ones that find a way to stay with us the longest.

 

2016 12 17 Holiday Essay: A While Ago December 17, 2016

I wrote a poem a while ago. This poem really jumped out and grabbed me by surprise, for it was the first of this kind of writing I had ever attempted. It was a Christmas poem, and now I find myself, all these years later, thinking about it and feeling a little sad that I can’t read it word for word today. As a lot of you know, Christmas poems are some of my favorite poems that I have ever written. There’s just something about them that have a way of enticing the child inside to gather up my things and bring the past ahead to greet my day, today. I suppose that I’m not unlike a lot of other writers who experience these same feelings over the holidays.

The poem was about three wise men that were making their journey towards a star in the sky. They made their way, not knowing why they did, not knowing what was in store for them, and not worrying about anything other than reaching the end of their journey, for it was a special journey indeed. The issues of their day didn’t matter. The barriers, obstacles, opposing points of view didn’t matter to them in the least. All that mattered, all that made sense, all that drove them forward was the thing that none of them could put a finger on, other than knowing that it was the most important ingredient of their day, of any day.

As I wrote this poem, I became part of the story. I walked beside these amazing men on an amazing journey to an amazing place where pure amazement was to take place. I found myself not caring about any of the things in my life that mattered, except the importance of the piece. I didn’t have to think what to write. I didn’t have to think of where the story was going. I didn’t have to think of how the story came to be, or how the story came to me. All I had to do, was write an incredible story that was taking place right before my very eyes.

A short while after writing the poem, it vanished into thin digital air.

I have suffered through my share of moments where I have lost a piece that I have written. Usually it was due to user error, so I never had to worry about blaming anyone but me. Yes, I would cringe, scowl, sulk, raise my voice in anger and tell myself that I will never ever have something so unfortunate happen again, but it has, and it will continue to, for you see, to make mistakes is a human characteristic that brings to light the reason for the gift awaiting those same three wise men.

I love writing no more than when a writing piece takes on a life of its own. I love writing no more than when each time I read a piece, it’s as if someone else wrote it. I love writing no more than when the words explode onto the screen. I love writing no more than when I realize just how much I love to write.

Christmas for me is a time to write. It’s a time to rejoice those feelings I have carried with me from my childhood. It’s a time to reflect on and realize the importance of so many simple things. It’s a time for us all to take a step back and notice all of the things that we should feel grateful for.

I remember a poem from a few years ago that helped me take notice of a special journey that three men made so many years ago. There was a star born in the sky one night that pulled them towards a magical moment born unto a manger. How did they know? How could they know? How wise were they? How much knowledge did they gain from their journey? Do the books really give a fitting description of just how amazing this all was? Was I able to capture the essence of the moment in the words I wrote? Has anyone ever found a way to sufficiently depict the magnificence with their scripted words?

I would give so much to be able to have that poem to read today, but I suppose that I should look at it as an opportunity, an experience that was meant for me.

I lost a poem I wrote a while ago. It remains a special poem to me. I am so very happy and fortunate that through the eyes of the miracle, this poem has found a way to find me once again.

 

2016 12 16 Holiday Poem: The Tipping Stick December 16, 2016

A dozen or so years ago, my family and I went down east Maine over Thanksgiving. My cousin’s family were into the wreath making business back then, and on one November’s morning, my cousin’s husband asked my son and I if we would like to join him to go tipping. This was the task of collecting tips from the branches of fir trees, to use for making wreaths. The trick was to only snap off a short part of the tips, so as to leave the trees in good shape to grow and keep supplying tips for the seasons to come. Upon snapping the tips, you would stuff the tips down onto a long stick until it was filled from top to bottom, approximately six feet tall. The Tipping Stick had a rope tied on one end that was used to secure the tips to the stick. Hauling a couple of these out of the woods was quite a chore, seeing as how the sticks, when filled, could weigh roughly fifty pounds each. .

I didn’t do too well tipping, I mean, I collected the tips fast enough, and filled a tipping stick or two, but I was snapping the tips too long for making really good wreaths. They required those making the wreaths to snap them again to bring them to the correct length.

The line in the poem referring to the Empty Rings is describing the steel rings that are used to make the wreaths. Until the tips were collected and taken to the wreath making shop, the empty rings sat stacked up in a corner, all alone and patiently awaiting the arrival of the fresh tips.

Anyway, a few years ago, we lost the best tipper that down east Maine ever knew, and this poem is dedicated to him.

***

The Tipping Stick

A Poem dedicated to Si

Trudge on, into the wood at daylights first call

The smell of the morning fir awakens the spirit

Daydreams of autumn unfold onto a shimmering dew

Eyes from the trees build with curiosity from above

Daylight’s growing rays scatter through branch and limb

With sticks at hand, and readied, the gathering begins

Through, over, around, into, under and beyond

Snap and pull, twist and push, pack and stack

Pausing to listen, the harmonies of the winds continue their song

Grace from high above settles a comforting hand onto the morn

Footsteps crisp with crackling leaf echo through the rolling wood

One by one, the tipping sticks fill with scent and shape

A white tailed gaze sends a charge through the heart

Tiny, scampering feet bring a warming smile

Morning doves and jays dance their chorus through the fir

Woodpecker and chick a dee tag along with familiar tune

Chilled breeze through the autumn wood bids a welcoming call

White birch lean in as they watch with curiosity

Morning shadows shorten as the day grows tall

Heavied sticks carry with them the magical smells of the season

Empty holiday rings patiently await the scented harvest

Hearty smiles reward and praise the morning’s heavy chore

As the sticks are emptied, the wooded fir sings out again with its beckoning call

A chilled November breeze welcomes the tipping footsteps once again

 

2016 12 15 Holiday Story: Benny’s Stool December 15, 2016

Benny’s stool was his favorite stool, probably because it was the only one he ever had. It was a perfect sized stool, as it allowed him to comfortably slide his legs underneath the work bench. So many of Benny’s dreams reminded him just how special his stool was, and so many of his dreams reminded him of many a day where he sat on his favorite stool, doing the things that he loved to do.

He was sure that there were millions of other stools in the world, just as sure that he was that many of those stools had found as great a home as his had. He sat on his very own stool, with his legs tucked down underneath, and his hands clasp together in front of him upon the smooth surface of the work bench.

He noticed the bandage on his right pinkie. The candy canes seemed to dance as he slowly removed the finger wrapping. With a smile, he saw that the injury had healed quite nicely, so he didn’t return the bandage to his finger. Instead, he looked up at the enormous clock on the wall above the third floor balcony railing. He noticed that it was three minutes to the hour, so he quickly slid his stool back, stood up, turned and dashed to a large waste canister along the wall of the very long, very high room. Making his way back to his stool, he sat and slid forward until his legs once again snugly fit under the bench.

He looked up to notice a dozen pairs of eyes staring directly back at him. Smiling, Benny clasped his hands again and looked back up at the very old clock.

One minute to.

The room was as quiet as a church mouse could ever have hoped to be.

With a startling toot of a whistle on the wall, the room suddenly burst to life with a hustle and bustle rarely seen south of the north. Benny looked down the work bench to his left, then to his right. As far as he could see, hands became alive with precision of craft. The noise soon became a sweet harmonic symphony that filled Benny’s pointed ears with a familiar, friendly tone.

He looked down to the bench surface in front of him, and smiled. Reaching out with his right hand, he grabbed a wooden mallet and pulled it close to his chest. Spinning the tool in his hands, he again looked down the table to his right.

One more time, he smiled.

The worker to his right, whose name was Huey, placed two wooden pegs inside two hollow holes, on one wooden surface, of one side, of one wooden object. Pushing the pegs into the holes as far as he could, he then looked to his left, nodded to Benny and slid the object right in front of him.

Staring down at the small wooden structure, Benny licked his lips and flipped the object onto its side. Cocking his head to the left, he spun the wooden item a quarter turn and then grabbed his wooden mallet with his right hand. Firmly grasping the object with his left hand, he carefully tapped the wooden pegs deep down into the holes, until they became flush against the surface of the object.

Feeling the ends of the pegs with his fingers, he smiled and quickly slid the wooden toy truck to his left, towards the one named Mo.

Benny nodded to Mo, then reached up to adjust his peppermint hat. Feeling comfortable again with the fit, he turned his gaze back to his right and clasped his hands once again.

With mug in hand, the bearded one slowly walked up behind Benny, leaned over, placed a hand on his shoulder and whispered in his ear.

As a smile slid across Benny’s glowing face, the bearded one squeezed his shoulder and smiled as big as the North Pole.

As Benny’s eyes continued growing as large as a full arctic moon, Santa leaned back, ran his hand down his thick, white beard, looked up over the top of his spectacles and down the long, busy work bench. He smiled and took a long, savory sip from his timeless mug of hot chocolate.

The busy sounds from the working elves rose up and echoed throughout the tall room as Santa turned, chuckled and slowly made his way down the long line of skilled workers.

A large chalk board hanging from the tall wall behind Benny read, “3 Days until Christmas!”

Making his way down to the end of the work bench, the bearded one turned, raised his mug and shouted, “Merry Christmas Everyone!”

The room grew quiet, and then with a collective, arctic roar, the entire elfin workforce turned to the ancient Spirit, raised their hats and shouted in unison, “Merry Christmas Santa!”

Again, the room quieted as the giver of the gifts turned and silently slipped out through the heavy wooden doors.

The smiles made their way up and down the long line of workers as they stared at one another.

With an amazing holiday rush of precisioned movement, the room became alive again with the hustling bustle of the Christmas spirit.

Smiling, Benny licked his lips, adjusted his stool, grabbed his mallet and quickly began tapping down onto a fresh pair of wooden pegs.

 

2016 12 14 Christmas Poem: Two Steps Back December 14, 2016

Two Steps Back

He stands as still as a nutcracker soldier
Arms at his side, his eyes move up, and down, and up again
His attention focuses in on the detailed brilliance
Way down deep in his footy pajamas, his toes start to dance

Taking two steps back, he regains his soldier’s stance
With a wandering gaze, his eyes grow wide
He starts to reach out, then quickly pulls his hands back
The mesmerizing brilliance is reflected in his curious hazel eyes

An ornamental story unfolds before him
Hand crafted whispers cast down their spell of seasonal magic
Nestling in deep, the colored lights illuminate his inquisitive soul
The gaze of the brave young soldier starts to move up and down again

Closing his eyes, he inhales the holiday scent
With careful precision, he slowly reaches out
Holding his breath, he gently caresses a mirrored orb
With a rush of emotion, his hand slides back down to his side

Again, his eyes dart back and forth
He breathes in deep
Slowly stepping back, he stares up at the lighted star
Breaking out in his patented smile, he turns and dashes out of the room

With a dazzling brilliance all its own, the Christmas tree smiles back

 

2016 12 13 Over the Hills and Through the Years December 13, 2016

Over the hills and through the years, the faces of Christmas change, but their message brings home the same joyous feelings of the season. Though I have changed greatly in appearance, manners and beliefs, my perceptions of Christmas, though seen now through the eyes of an older man, are still met with an innocence of youth that runs up and walks along side me. I am grateful for each season of the spirit, no matter what it holds, no matter how bright the shining light.

My son and grandson came to visit the other day, and as I sat and listened to my two favorite men over a wonderful dinner, and finally a competitive game of dice, I heard in their voices those same echoes of my past that continue to replenish my heart and soul. Although I couldn’t see it with my eyes, whenever my grandson smiled, I could feel it from my toes to my nose. It was the same feeling that I received when my son, his dad, used to continuously hand directly to me, for what seemed a thousand years upon a very special day.

I write often of Christmas. I remember as I write, and oh how those memories choose to nestle in and keep me company. From my childhood, to the family that felt so much a part of me the other day, I wonder if it’s all meant to continue with a story, my story that with each year that passes by, keeps reminding me of how uniquely all of the ingredients of the seasons mix and blend themselves into a story that keeps gaining in momentum.

Try as I might, I can’t seem to shake the feelings of family through the season of Christmas. Try as I may, the tides of emotion seem to grab hold of an older man and shake the life back into him. It’s something that I can’t avoid, and it’s something that, at times, I feel compelled to write about. Passages and phrases and metaphors can’t do it the justice that it deserves, but I continue to write, none the less.

I remember as a child sitting by the picture window in our living room on a snowy winter’s night. Sitting next to the simple colored candle lights in the window, I would gaze out across a field of twilight magic, and as a winter’s snow tumbled quietly to the ground, a calm feeling of peace crept over and down through me. Focusing on the amazing colors of the waning day outside the window, to the reflected images of the Christmas tree behind me in the living room, their competing brilliance was outdone only by the story of the season at hand. Once again, it’s hard for me to describe this feeling, except to say that whenever I’m able to catch a glimpse of it these days, I’m instantly transported back through time to a moment in time, a passage in time, in my time, when a young boy didn’t have to worry about the need to describe it. All he had to do was sit back in his chair, close his eyes and just continue being a young boy, innocently caught up in the pure magic of the moment.

I wish I could think of different words to describe the feelings. I wish I could figure out how to phrase the emotions and memories so that everyone in the world could know what was churning in my heart. I wish and wish and then, I am reminded once again that the best part of these feelings, these emotions isn’t how I might be able to describe them, rather the most amazing part of it all is in effect, born from the simplest ingredient of all. Love.

Something that you can’t describe as a child, continues to be indescribable as an adult. No price tags, no monetary value, no hidden disclaimers or sales pitches, but a straight to the heart word that carries with it a magic that I hope you all are able to grab hold of this, and every season forward.

I feel, I write, therefore, I write what I feel.

May the joys of the Season keep good company with you all.
From a snowy ridge in Maine.

DP