Sunday, December 26, 2010

lifting the light

this has been such a fine week of gathering with friends, eating delicious food, giving, receiving and cozying down with my sweet family.

it began with a lively solstice full moon eclipse, peaked with a venetian pot luck, culminated in a celebration around the yule tree, and now -- the day after christmas -- dan, tashi, tristan and i enjoy cinnamon rolls, sweet bread, savory left overs mixed with orzo and cheese, games, play and much needed long naps.

in my heart, all of the celebrations of the season revolve around solstice. the light swells from our homes, trees, candles and hearths. the light of the manger is the light in us all, the good light we wish to swaddle in, grow and share.

here are some scenes from our solstice week. . .

first, the actual solstice, a story telling day when our children receive new books, one of many days that we scatter food around the yard for animals, a day to play in snow if we are so lucky, a day of eating, baking, crafts and intention.

next, in our friends' beautifully decorated home, a venetian pot luck, starring recipes from tessa kiros: shrimp asparagus risotto, delicately fried italian meatballs and a ricotta tart with chocolate pastry crust. improvised piano entertainment unfolded.

we had a gift exchange brunch with good friends on christmas eve morning, followed by inevitable last minute errands, cookie baking, a cypriot dinner feast, story book reading and a late-late night up with dan, wrapping, assembling, drinking raspberry lambic and eating fudge.

one of my few handmade gifts of the season was this apron for liz.

and then the big morning arrived, so many fine items under the tree to behold. while i'm conflicted about the materialism of christmas, i feel like our efforts to share delight were just right. some much need items were distributed: bike helmets, clothing for growing children, winter wear, wool lined slippers, pajamas, books and smart playthings. mixed in with the necessities were some treasures: sparkling earrings, scooters, a chunky necklace, gift cards, an electric razor, belgian chocolates. . .

aside from a couple of special photo books i put together and gifted, i made an apron for my dear tashi, and a robot-of-sorts for darling tristan, who likes to sing robot parade.

i love tashi's little apron, the colors, the owls & the ric rac.

tristan's robot didn't quite turn out as i'd wished. what appears to be a mouth was originally meant to be a control panel. i decided to add a button nose to fill the gap. in the future i would prefer the features to not appear as one big face. making it was fun. i have a feeling tashi's line of fuzzawumbles might become more varied as she and i design new characters.

now we have a week to luxuriate in as we approach the new year and our daughter's 13th birthday. there is some work to be done, but mostly i want to take advantage of the opportunity to relax. the snow comes and goes and the light -- despite the cold heart of winter -- increases with each day. may hope continue to ring even as the holiday bells are packed away.


Valerie 007 said...

its so charming how you convey to your readers the mood of the holidays at your home. Its sounds so lovely, how i wish it was at my house. With my sisters gone and my children adults its not the same and of course with the cruise it was really different this year !

zoe krylova said...

thank you! the holidays always felt pretty empty to me, until i learned about winter solstice. all these rituals that involve trees and lights and wreaths, etc, all came alive for me again. and of course, having young children helps. a cruise doesn't sound half bad though!