Here is my little write up in the ABS Holiday Newsletter:
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that in our house our most anticipated seasonal tradition is based on books. Two books, both unrelated but each one representative of Christmas – at least to our family and friends. On Christmas Eve, after church, we settle down in front of the fire, our plates loaded with mincemeat tarts, shortbread and other delectable goodies, and out come the books – both poetic but otherwise unrelated.
I am the designated reader, although guests are sometimes given the honour if they are not shy. “Twas the Night Before Christmas,” I begin, and many of you, like our family can recite the rest off by heart.
The next book is less obvious, but just as popular: The Cremation of Sam Mcgee.” We all recite the first line together: “There are strange things done in the midnight sun.”
“That’s not very Christmassy,” a guest once commented.
“No, it’s not,” I replied, “at least not to most people, but it is to us. It’s our tradition.”
Like all traditions, ours might seem odd to some, but like all traditions, customs and rituals, it makes sense to those practicing it. In this case, our family.
– Julie Burtinshaw