Merry Meet friends! I hope that all of you here in the USA and those who celebrate it; had a blessed Thanksgiving day. I had a very nice day! It was celebrated at my house (as usual) but a very small group this year. My sister and her hubby were in St. Thomas, so their grown kids, who live out of state, didn’t come in. My daughter, son-in-law and grandkids take turns with both sides of the family for holidays..it wasn’t our year so they weren’t here. So I had 8 family members and two lovely guests. My mom and I split the menu….the traditional meal as we have made for years..and that everyone expects! 🙂 The food was great! Everyone was relaxed and happy and a good time was had. After, I put my jammies on early, had some coffee with Baileys, sat by the fire and vegged out! How about you? Was your Thanksgiving a good one?
Did you go out shopping on Black Friday? I did that one time many years ago. I vowed to never do it again and I haven’t! LOL. It was a nightmare in so many ways. As I watch the videos on tv of people fighting over an item, being trampled as stores throw open their doors, etc..it all just seems crazy to me. Don’t even get me started about stores opening up on Thanksgiving eve. You can get good deals all through the holidays, online etc…I just don’t get the appeal. If you braved it..kudos to you and hope you got great deals! I got good deals too…I shopped in my jammies online and got most of my shopping done! Yay!!
The rest of this blog post is from a previous post back in 2010 that I decided to repost for new readers who may not have come across it. I was watching “A Christmas Carol” again today, remembered my writing this and thought you all would enjoy it. Let me know what you think.
Now that Thanksgiving is past, our thoughts all turn to Yule/Christmas. Other than Samhain, probably my favorite Sabbat! Before I go on any further, let me explain that I celebrate the Winter Solstice AND Christmas. Christmas to me is a secular holiday..all about family, feasting, good will, music, lights, trees, gifts of course, etc etc. The story “A Christmas Carol” is all about Christmas Eve and Christmas Day..so that’s what I’ll be speaking about for now.
I love Winter! ( yes I know some people will be groaning right now!) I love all it entails. Sitting by the fire, nesting, going outside and feeling the cold air whip across my face and take my breath away, wearing cozy sweaters, knitted scarves, hats & mittens, hot chocolate, warm spiced wine, feeding the winter birds and having time to read, crochet, relax, bake, take on projects on the inside of the house, ..well I just love the slower pace. Today I watched “A Christmas Carol”…my all time favorite book and movie…all versions..ever! Today happened to be the musical version..which I happen to think is excellent. Has Kelsey Grammar as Scrooge and many other great stars. My favorite version..for the record..is probably George C. Scott…he was a most excellent Scrooge! Though sometimes I think it must be Patrick Stewart! 🙂
“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. Oh, tell me I may sponge away the writing on this stone!”
I am sure many of you will recognize this quote. I am a huge lover of Charles Dickens and I think he writes beautifully and from the heart and his words are still ringing true all these years later. He was indeed teaching a lesson in this Novella. What is the lesson? I would imagine most people would say the same thing…”goodwill towards men”. I see it as more than that. My understanding is that Dickens was appalled at the poverty he saw around him, and that the middle and upper class were doing nothing to help them at all. His Scrooge talks about the work houses and the programs set up by the government to aid the impoverished…but it was nowhere near enough. He wrote this book to open the eyes of those who were not “seeing” what needed to be done. For people to open their hearts and their wallets to help the less fortunate and it would make them happier and more blessed in their own life.
As a pagan witch, I believe that God/Goddess, the Universe, the Creator, whatever you believe in… put us here to learn lessons..with the ultimate goal being LOVE. Our goal in life should be to discover that..LOVE. And to love means to care for our “fellow man”. To me, “Goodwill towards Men” means just that. We should love our family and friends as I’m sure we do. But we should also love those we don’t know, help those who need it, love and care for Mother Earth and the creatures who inhabit Her… No judgement, no greed, no setting standards for others in our own minds, equality for all, acceptance of all religions, courtesy, kindness….Love. To me, Dickens hit the nail on the head so to speak…he saw a vision of how the world should be. More of us could learn from Scrooge’s Christmas Eve night.
Scrooge was not an evil man..he was afraid. His father did time in debtors prison..causing him to have to slave in a work house at 11 years old. He never wanted to do that again..but he lost track of his self, his soul..so focused was he on never being poor. Until he learned what dying a lonely old man would truly be like..did he become a truly rich man. Hoarding his money, working long hours, never enjoying the money he had; even for himself. He didn’t have a relationship with anyone except his business partner, Marley. He lived a very “poor” life in every way…because of his fear.
There are many positive wonderful characters in this book. Old Fizziwig, who gave a huge party, sparing no expense, to show his gratitude to his employees. There is the clerk, Bob Cratchit, so lowly in Scrooge’s eyes, but greatly loved by his large poverty stricken family, especially Tiny Tim. Then there is Fred, Scrooge’s endearing nephew. He was the epitome of a good man who’s life was abundant in family, friends, love , joy, and blessings. He showed love at every turn. All he wanted from Uncle Scrooge was for him to come to Christmas Day dinner. He came every year and requested it every year. He never gave up on him. and when Scrooge had his life altered…he welcomed him with open arms..holding no grudge for all the years of rejection. Though he was not a rich man…he was rich in every other way.
I don’t know about you..but I want to be like Fred….I want to be rich in friends. I want to be rich in experiences. I want to be rich in appreciation for the blessings that come to my life. This is the lesson that Scrooge learned..luckily while he could still have some time to truly appreciate it. Look into your own Past, Present, and even into your Future. Have you done well by others? Can you do better? ” A Christmas Carol” will always mean a lot to me…and I will try to keep Christmas in my heart all year long. and as Tiny Tim says……God(Goddess) Bless Us Every One!!
Every year in recent years, my family has adjusted how we celebrate the holidays. Yule is for me about introspection, welcoming the Light, and having quiet time to myself. Christmas is as I said above…family, food, fun, giving, and Santa! Having said that, we have simplified so much and it has made the holidays so much more enjoyable. There are less gifts and more time spent together. Whether baking cookies, watching a movie together with popcorn and a fire, hot chocolate and driving around to see light displays, breakfasts or lunches together, a little shopping, romantic candle lit dinners….just making memories together. That after all is what your family will remember. Looking back over your childhood, do you remember what was under the tree, or do you remember decorating it? Do you remember what gift who gave who or do you remember grandma and grandpa coming over to visit? While we all may remember that favorite gift we got, most of what we remember are the not things..but people and how they affected your life growing up. I keep this in mind every day with my girls and now my grandkids. Just remember, things don’t have to be perfect, you don’t have to spend a lot of money…you just have to make memories!!! It’s the simple things in Life that matter!
Have a Blessed Week and Breathe deep as the holidays are under way!
Blessings and Love, Autumn