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My wife and I have a handful of traditions for Christmas that have accumulated over the last ten or so years of marriage. The friends we have addresses for get a holiday card even if they arrive late. We set up a tree each year, even if is a tiny one. I leave those tree lights on overnight on Christmas Eve. There are always a few gifts to open on Christmas Day, even if we usually both know what the other got for us. For the last several years, I write this blog post.

This year has mostly stuck to the script, with the addition of figuring out what the dog will get for Christmas, and how to keep him out of the tree. It is our second year in the house, and I had outdoor lights briefly on the porch railing this season before we started a project to replace them. Samantha has taken up playing a few holiday songs on the piano. We still are not sure if the dog enjoys it when he “sings” along.

The last year has been a whirlwind, with a lot of anxiety about the world around us and our place in it. The holiday season has been a nice return to some familiar routines.

From our home to yours, Merry Christmas!