It’s a mix of old and new. As this time of year ever is. As Christmas ever is.
The stockings are wrapped. There are presents under my tree. I have made the cranberry sauce, cooked the carrots, the celery and onion and mushrooms for the stuffing are chopped, waiting in a bowl.
I have delivered gifts and baking. The Christmas Cards will go out late, just like they do every year. Maybe next year I will give up and just send out cards that wish people happy new years.
The recipes I grew up with, the carrot dish I found when I was 19. I cooked it the first time for my mother’s 50th birthday, which means I’ve been cooking it for 22 years. My variant of bread stuffing that I have been tweaking for 10 years. This year, with walnuts and water chestnuts.
Tomorrow I will cram things into the oven. I will add all the leaves into the table and I will set it with the crystal and china I grew up with. The Christmas dishes my mother bought me. I will turn on all the Christmas lights and both trees. There will be candles burning. Stockings at the ready.
I will open the door and let all the light spill out so that 7 international students can join me. This too is old and new. I grew up in a house where there were a variety of people who came and went at Christmas.
So for a few hours, they will join me. There will be light and laughter. Happy Holidays in many languages. I will feed them 40 years worth of traditions.
Old and new.