As the holiday bells ring out the old year, and sweethearts kiss, and cold hands touch and warm each other against the year ahead, may I wish you not the biggest and best of life but the small pleasures that make living worthwhile.
Sometime during the New Year, to keep your heart in practice, may you do someone a secret good deed and not get caught at it. May you find a little island of time to read that book and write that letter, and to visit that friend.
May your next do-it-yourself project not look like you did it yourself. May the poor relatives you helped support remember you when they win the lottery. May your best card tricks win admiring gasps and your worst puns win admiring groans. May all those who told you so, refrain from saying “I told you so.”
May all the predictions you’ve made for your future come true. May just half of those optimistic predictions that your high school yearbook made for you come true. In a time of sink or swim, may you find you can walk to shore before you call the lifeguard. May you keep at least one ideal that you can pass along to your kids.
For a change, some rainy day when you’re late, may the train be waiting for you. May you accidentally overhear someone saying something nice about you. If you run into an old school friend, may you both remember each other’s names. If you are on a diet, may someone say “You’ve lost some weight” without knowing you’re on a diet.
May that long and lonely night be brightened by a telephone call. When you trip and fall, may there be no one watching to laugh at you or feel sorry for you. Sometime soon may you be waved at by a friend, smiled at by a stranger, wagged at by a puppy, run to by a child, and counted on by someone you love.
More than this, no one can wish you.
Happy New Year!
Image via Wikipedia
This weekend we had our annual tree-trimming party with all of our friends. It is a chance for all of us to have some cocktails and nibbles, and to enjoy each other’s company.
It started with just six of us, right after college (i.e. longer than we care to admit), and we have picked up many more friends along the way. We now numbered thirty and that will no doubt still grow in the coming years.
One of our traditions (in addition to Jessie doing his infamous Bing Crosby imitation) is to exchange tree ornaments so that every year everyone has a brand new-looking tree. And at the end of the night, I give everyone a popcorn ball to take home. Not to store-bought kind but the gooey homemade kind. It’s not the best or most expensive gift we give to our closest friends, but it is one that everyone knows comes from the heart.
This year, I “adopted” five troops serving in Afghanistan. An email a week seems the least I can do for those half a world away from their families so that we can be safe here at home. The holiday boxes I sent to them included the same popcorn balls I gave to friends here – a dozen to each instead of just one. Needless to say, I am now the best friend of those five troops and all of their friends, too. The warm and fuzzy feeling from the thank you notes will last long into the new year.
Do you have a holiday tradition – new or old – that you would like to share? Inquiring minds would like to know!
Image by Eph Zero via Flickr
With only seven weeks left in the year, some people (and you know who you are) are still striving to complete the list of resolutions that were made back in January.
In my wild and crazy youth, my resolutions were lofty goals – volunteer in causes that would change the world, contribute to worthwhile charities, etc. Hey, what can I say, I grew up in the generation that lived to protest anything and everything. As I grew older, the resolutions became more personal – work toward a promotion, find the man of my dreams, go back to school, write an epic novel. Still lofty, but definitely more realistic.
Looking back on all those promises to myself that I meant to keep, I find that a surprising number of them were completed. Not always in the same year that I made them, but kept still the same.
Perhaps that is how it should be. Goals and dreams cannot always be fulfilled with the confines of a year. Twelve months is far too short a time for the important things in life. It is the perfect time, however, for the small goals – saving for and then taking a grand vacation, buying that something special you’ve wanted for years. When scaled down, resolutions can actually be kept and then proudly checked off the list at the end of the year.
As for me, I still have one more item on my 2011 list of resolutions, but I am not worried. I still have seven weeks to accomplish it, and then I can look forward to sitting back on New Year’s morning with one last glass of champagne in hand and writing down my resolutions for the coming year.
How about you? How many things are still on you 2011 list?