Saturday, December 26

Reflecting on Radiance

"Radiant" was my word for the year. So, how did I do? Funnily enough, after re-reading my initial post, I was inspired all over again! Too bad I didn't read it a few more times throughout the year, mind you. :)

While not entirely "alight with new confidence" nor was I terribly "dissuaded with disappointment" either. In fact, there were even hints of (dare I say?) vibrancy! One of those times as the proud father of the bride at my daughter's wedding ceremony this summer. Nailing the obligatory speech (imho) was particularly astonishing considering that I had never managed to actually write it out, let alone practice it all the way through (from breaking down and crying too much). Walking the stunning bride down the aisle and, later, thanking all the guests individually was just icing on the proverbial wedding cupcakes, as it were. :)

Another moment that comes to mind was just this last Sunday when Alex and I hosted our annual Christmas party. As a dear friend noted, apparently I was "beaming, so in [my] element" while welcoming our guests as the attentive host. I was "on" as she put it. Ha. Love that, and how true. I do feel alive when given the opportunity to be hospitable and show people they really matter. Perhaps, it's no wonder then that Betty often laughingly refers to me as her personal butler? (I think I missed my calling.) At my finest, it really is like a page out of the old, imaginative Mr. Toast and his Christmas Teas, except now of course, Alex is there making yummy offerings too (like her beautiful homemade yule log), complementing my own lemon shortbread and mulled wine.

Was 2015 a year of being personally radiant? Hmm... well, certainly there were moments of radiance. That in itself is something to celebrate! I'll take it as I reflect on what is possibly the greatest narrative of all, the Christmas Story. How radiant indeed.

Happy Boxing Day.


Monday, December 7

Old World Christmas: St. Lucia's Day

It's been a fair while since contributing to Creative Tuesdays, hasn't it? Never mind, I did actually get to it this time.

For my Old World Christmas, I was inspired by silk screening Xmas cards from the '50's and '60's with their limited palettes and flat inks. Always liking to mix things up a bit, I decided to change the girl's traditional white dress to one more yellow/gold as you can see.  Likewise, while the Scandinavian girl would normally be blonde, I made her hair red, not only for that Christmas element but as a nod to the red sashes traditionally worn by the girls to represent Lucia's martyrdom. Finally, I have the entire piece, the Christmas globe, if you will, shining out from the darkness as St. Lucia's Day is also called the Festival of Lights.

I'm really glad I chose to settle on this celebration, learning more about this ancient Christmas festival in the process. How magical it would be to venture off to Norway or such to experience it! I do so love the traditions of Christmas, must say. :)

Happy St. Lucia's Day! I hope your own holiday traditions are underway and going well. We just returned from our weekend up in Estes Park at a rented cabin. It's the time of year when we all get to actually spend two days together, making food, shopping for our annual Christmas tree ornament and playing games. Oh, and it's become the moment when I magically turn into Father Christmas to (still) drop off our xmas stockings for my mostly grown up kids. (Some traditions never change!)