I find that, somewhat to my surprise, each year I get excited about the holidays. I'm not really religious, so it doesn't hold that meaning to me. I don't like commercialism and worry about the environment, so that's kind of a downer on the Earth/culture front. But in spite of that, I love the first sense of crisp air, the anticipation of family gatherings, the sugar cookies and the sparkling tree lights that December brings. This year, husband and I have decided (was he joking? I wasn't) that perhaps we should focus our celebration on the Winter Solstice - an annual occurence that I do find meaningful. Not for any pagan reasons, but just because it's a natural marker for the conclusion of another four seasons. (Ok, maybe that's slightly pagan. But I'm not leaving any offerings for the winter sprites. Santa is the only one who gets my cookies!) A friend today introduced me to Yalda - the Persian winter holiday. I look forward to learning more about it.
One of my favorite parts of the season is sending out Christmas cards. Snail mail - lovely. Snail mail of charming images on classy paper - even better! This year I'm adding a rubber stamp to seal them. ::sigh:: I need to boil some mulled wine and watch the snowflakes come down. And then read a book.