to be with you

So much of the joy of the holiday season is about being with people we love. Or it should be — if we don’t get too caught up in the hustle of commercialism and bustle of command performances. Traditions are key to making time for what really matters. In developing traditions, we prioritize the commitment to be with each other.

christmas-horses pinkchurch yellow-building

We’re never too old and it’s never too late for new traditions. Since our chids have grown we have come to enjoy Alight at Night at Upper Canada Village. Sometimes it’s just the Hubs and I. Most often we are with our chids or others we love. Regardless, it’s a special place and time to enter into the Christmas spirit.

christchurch2 churchst cabin-window

Nothing moves fast here. The scenery unfolds at the speed of a horse and wagon. Or the pace of a man and woman on foot — dodging puddles, if winter has been gentle, and the inevitable horse poo. It’s easy to slow down, breathe deep, and enjoy the moment.

bluewreath bulbs christchurch

Breathing deeply here is sure to be equine enhanced. Other pleasant scents follow us around the park to tempt our taste buds. Our pockets empty as we go. We can’t resist the gingerbread boys, with their gumdrop buttons and sweet icing. The hot chocolate, although watery, warms us through.

Sometimes we eat dinner on site, turkey at the Harvest Barn or ham at Willard’s. Often we take time to enjoy a foamy ale or glass of wine. Later, we wait in line for freshly baked cinnamon rolls and bread to take home. “This bread will make good French toast,” the Hubs nudges. The bread is a bit heavy but cinnamon rolls, sliced sideways, work just fine. ;=)

Like most traditions, this one is a sensory extravaganza perfect for memory making. Caroling at Christ Church is always the highlight of our evening together. ‘Tis the season! Adults and children alike call out requests for round after rousing round. Our chids are embarrassed that I sing loudly but I cannot contain myself! Nor do I want to. But I become quiet to listen to the less familiar carols of French Canadian tradition. I’m a Francophile; a wanna’ be.

Speaking of traditions … have you heard Sara Groves’ To Be With You (O Holy Night, 2009)? It’s a sweet reminder that traditions take time. And time — this moment — is about all we have, isn’t it?

To be with you / To be with you / I love this time of year / it always brings me here / to be with you …

You’ll love it, too! Listen in…

To Be With You (Album Version)

~René Morley

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