"Christmas is not in tinsel and lights and outward show. The secret lies in an inner glow. It's lighting a fire inside the heart. Good will and joy a vital part. It's higher thought and a greater plan. It's glorious dream in the soul of man." (Wilfred A. Peterson) It is only December 13th, and Christmas is 12 days away, but from all the frenzy of various tree lighting celebrations (which I have blogged about in a previous post) that sets crowds clamoring in New York City where I live, it is hard not to get caught up in the often chaotic atmosphere of the city.
I normally do not like to put up outdoor decorations to honor the season until Christmas Eve, and then leave them up for the feast days that follow. I don't want to rush my life or the season by doing things too early or to be taking time away from the present moment; and in this case that would be reflecting on the season Advent has to offer. In fact, this year I actually took down my year-round outdoor lights (that have been wrapped around my urban garden's railing for a number of years) at the very time my neighbors were putting up their annual holiday lights. I did this because when I winterized my garden by having my trees, shrubs, plants, and herbs wrapped, and also had most of them moved closer to the building. I was "left" with bare branches of my Actinida kolomikta and Actimidia (Kiwi Vines) which can be seen in the photograph at the top of this post. I continue to find the textures of this vine's branches to be awesome, as I've previously noted when describing my "lighting ceremony" which I described in this entry. At that time I decided I would be taking down my railing lights, which I have had for a number of years, as I was afraid the wires and cords would interfere with the Actinida kolomikta's branches. I had taken down the railing lights in the wee (and frigid) hours of the morning (of the day I had my containers wrapped for winterizing) by cutting all my lights from the roof extension garden's railings. My intention was to leave the railings bare to showcase the Kiwi's branches, and to wait until Christmas to put up the holiday lights, but since I wanted help stringing them, I had to do it on my winterizing day when help was available. The result can be seen in the photograph posted below, which was taken by Donna De Solis.
Donna took this photograph when I had a "re-lighting" ceremony, although on this particular evening, the ceremony was an "inner lighting ceremony" to help Donna preserve memories and the light of her friend who had passed away. I had made an i-movie for Donna from "cell-phone" footage and also with numerous photos that she had given me. The movie that she wanted me to create was in honor of her friend, and what better time to honor him than during Advent. I hope in the hustle and bustle of holiday time, that you too find time to honor your friends and family in whatever way you find meaningful, and if it is by having a gathering, hosting an event, or one-to-one communication, I still have some holiday invitations that will preserve a moment in time, event program covers that will enhance your venue, and cards that are about more than communication.
To reiterate: "Christmas is not in tinsel and lights and outward show. The secret lies in an inner glow. It's lighting a fire inside the heart. Good will and joy a vital part. It's higher thought and a greater plan. It's glorious dream in the soul of man." (Wilfred A. Peterson)