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Merry Christmas Everyone

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May your Christmas Day be twinkly and shiny. You continue to enrich my life. Thank you for spending time here. Merry Christmas, Everyone!

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This post is part of the series Roll Out the Holly, about the stories Christmas ornaments can conjure. Click here to read the series from the beginning.

Seduced by a Squirrel

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A pom-pom squirrel. It decorated one of the first baby gifts awaiting my grand debut. I don’t know what was inside the box. Most likely, it moldered away in a forgotten landfill long ago.

Squirrelly has remained. A stalwart first friend. A fixture of my whole life. Every year, I unwrap him. Kiss him. Release him for a few short weeks to preen at the top of our big tree.

What does it say about me that my true oldest friend is a squirrel made of yarn and some ribbon?

Happy Christmas Eve!

For more about good friends:

He’s Super Human: Lou Mello

Into the Unknown: Lori O’Leary

Model Trains, Drugs and Thanks for Michael Carnell

This post is part of the series Roll Out the Holly, about the stories Christmas ornaments can conjure. Click here to read the series from the beginning.

 

God Jul

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Wherever we travel for Thanksgiving, MTM and I always buy a trinket to remind us of the destination. Sometimes, it’s an actual ornament, but we hang it on the tree regardless.

Of all the Thanksgiving trips we’ve taken, the one to Stockholm in 2010 topped all others for Christmas cheer and holiday spirit. It snowed fat, fluffy flakes every day. The air felt North Pole-ish. Christmas markets inhabited every snowy square and park. Dark windows were lit with paper stars.

Every time I unwrap my God Jul ornament, I remember the brush of the chill on my face. I can see the snowflakes in my hair and feel them melting on my tongue. Songs and sounds come back to me in the air, and I see that Nordic sunlight, blurred like the twinkle of a Christmas bulb on my tree.

To read more about Stockholm in November:

The Girl Who Played With Herself

The Sadistic Elusiveness of Bondage Tights

Is She Still a Slave to Bondage Tights?

This post is part of the series Roll Out the Holly, about the stories Christmas ornaments can conjure. Click here to read the series from the beginning.

The Friends Who Love Us

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She is my oldest friend. Yet, she’s a few months younger than me. We grew up together. Next-door neighbors from the time we were four until we graduated from college. She moved to our current state capital. I moved to the former one.

Right after we were separated, she gave me this silver ornament. No explanation. She’s never been much for back story.

But.

The year she almost died, I got this ornament out and stared at it for a long time. Before, it was a sentimental reminder of her more than it was something I would’ve chosen for myself. I hung it on my tree out of duty. No longer. Today, it shines because she does, her body strong, her mind whole.

Her cross is a reminder not to take living for granted. To be thankful for another opportunity to bedeck a tree. To count myself lucky to still have a friend I’ve known since I was four. To embrace the fulness of life.

To read more about my friend Beth:

Thankful for Miracles With Friends

Postcards from the Edge

This post is part of the series Roll Out the Holly, about the stories Christmas ornaments can conjure. Click here to read the series from the beginning.

His Favorite Color is Black

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Before I met MTM, I never counted black as an actual color. It wasn’t part of the spectrum of a rainbow. It made me feel like I was suffocating when submerged in it in a cave. It meant goth and horror movies and depression and death.

After we dated a while, I noticed something: MTM’s clothes were mostly black. Socks. Shoes. Even underwear. All black, black, black. At times, I wondered if I was dating Frankenstein.

Until I realized that architects like to wear black. A lot. It really is his favorite color.

So, when I saw a black Christmas ornament, I had to buy it. I hoped he would ignore the bejeweled shimmer in the center and focus on the thought, the inclusion of his favorite color in a prime position on our tree.

For more about my black wedding dress, in honor of MTM’s favorite color:

The Power of Blood Red

Where No One Stands Alone

 

This post is part of the series Roll Out the Holly, about the stories Christmas ornaments can conjure. Click here to read the series from the beginning.

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