So it is the holiday season once again; the shops are already bulging with Holiday food, most of it representing different faiths and beliefs. The credit cards are being swiped madly as people buy a whole load of items they really do not want or need, but they feel they need them at this time of the year. For me, being metaphysical, I have worked through the “need” to have a Holiday event such as presents and a groaning table. Honestly, over the years I have lost more and more interest in the holidays. This year I will be celebrating the holiday, but nothing like most other people will. I am no longer a Christian, nor am I Jewish or any other faith; I am just metaphysical in that I believe in a higher power and in a different teaching to anyone around me who is not as I am. I will buy presents for my grandchildren, but this year it will be books, as they so enjoy reading. So it will be more educational presents than toys.

It is such a different holiday season to the ones I had as a child. The celebrations began in June/July when my mother would make the Cake and the Pudding for what was then for us Christmas Day. The tree would be put up and decorated December the 1st, and decorations placed around the house. My brother and I would go Carol singing for money to buy presents from the beginning of December, it was very cold in England at that time so we would be seeing our own breath as we sang our Carols. We would be taken to see Santa Claus despite the fact at age nine or ten we knew he was not real, and things like chestnuts and extra fruit would be brought into the house and stored away. We had a big fire every night and it was my job to lay and light the fire as well as empty the ashes the next morning, more than anything there was an expectation in the air, something to look forward to.

In those days candy (sweets) was almost nonexistent in the shops unlike now when you are assuaged by it at every corner in the supermarket. We only (in our house anyway) got sweets for Christmas, Easter, Birthdays and special occasions. The same with fruit and nuts, that too was a special occasion item. Our thoughts were on the selection chocolate boxes we would get along with our presents; these were boxes of assorted chocolate bars. On Christmas day I would go to Church 3 or 4 times in the day, it was a special day at our Church and I was in love with Jesus then. I really mean that too; I was so into Jesus, I prayed to the energy all of the time, of course hoping not to go to Hell because that is what we were taught would happen if we were not behaved. Christmas Day was so special dinner wise too. Mum would be up at 5 am preparing the dinner, one year it would be a Turkey, another pork or a goose, it was a big dinner, followed by Christmas Pudding and custard. After dinner if we could move or not fall asleep, we had left over meat sandwiches, Christmas cake and Minced Pies with tinned fruit and cream, after dinner we were stuffed, the next day was Boxing Day as we called it, and all we could eat was soup! The memories have stayed with me all these years.

My holiday season will be nothing like the days gone by, and I am so happy. I continued the traditions with my own family, and they are continuing with it for their families. It will be a very quiet holiday season this year, no celebrations. I will be seeing my family, for the first time in 3 years, my two youngest children will be reunited with each other after many years of absence from one another, their children will be meeting their cousins for the first time since they were babies, and so it will be a special time for me to see them together. Sadly, my oldest daughter and grandson will not be present; they live in Spain and cannot attend our gathering. I will not see what they see with the celebrations, I cannot, I have moved away from it all. In a way, I celebrate all spiritual holidays, but do not do so with rituals.

I will watch everyone going crazy with their credit cards, and I will wait for the sales after the holiday and maybe buy some holiday food to remind me of my childhood, perhaps a cake and some mince pies reduced in price. I did used to make a special fruit cake and give it to friends as gifts, but I have given that away too. It will be over before I know it and I am honestly pleased we are a small group where I am and they all feel the same about the holiday season. For those of you enjoying the season, celebrating whatever faith you worship, may Alan and I wish you a wonderful holiday season, we sincerely hope you have a wonderful time, it is a time of rest and relaxation, try not to work too hard at pleasing others. It is YOUR time also.