This year I tried to find my Christmas spirit.
I don't really even know what 'Christmas spirit' means, because it's been defined so many times.
Here's what I'm finding it for me...that it's defined in individual seconds of time.
It's about focusing on the light in the darkness...not only with the decorations my wife so wonderfully creates, but in my own life. I do realize my 'dark' is pretty bright compared to others I know, but it doesn't stop me from not enjoying what I have...
....but as I discover through these photos: Without darkness, the light around me wouldn't be so cherished
Snow. I love snow with outside lights.
Nothing really deep here, I just feel at peace when I'm out in a gentle snow with Christmas lights on.
I get emotional when I see this one. There's something about the color red in the winter night lit by Christmas lights. Maybe its telling me to focus. That I get so distracted I can't enjoy simple, essential experiences.
Sometimes Christmas time is bleak. Many times I feel how this photo looks. While this photo is just a longer exposure of a gentle snow, it brings a notion of dark...despair...as it turns out, it was taken just about the same time I learned of an old high school friend whose husband suddenly died in a work accident. I don't have words for her but all I can do is try to appreciate what I have now...at this second.
...and then there's this dog. This 30 pound animal has found a way to dig a hole so deep in our hearts and settle in there for all time. In one breath I love it and hate it...knowing that she'll be around a couple handfuls of Christmases.
...again, cherish what I have now...at this second
Cactus bites...a favorite appetizer that our kids make.
My girlies are growing, maturing, and surprising me with their awesomeness. They have the world waiting for them!
All kids...proud of each one...every one has their strengths and while I keep saying "I can't wait to see what unfolds", I should be just saying "So grateful for this second with them". Because while planning is important, cherishing what is happening at this second is most important...and something I've failed to teach them.
...of course, the next second, they are not posed, but reflect their natural state :-)
Our whole family...quite a year, and we are all together...at least for the moment.
Of course the dog wonders why she's not the center of attention :-)
Finally, my oldest finding joy in his 18 year love of legos...
In the end, I found that each second can hold its own expression of Christmas Spirit...from fun, to thoughtful, to sad, to an overwhelming feeling of contentment that I really don't need anything, that everything I long for is right here.