Twelfth Night

When I was growing up, we put up the Christmas Tree on 24 December–often going to the tree lot and purchasing the tree that morning, after we finished delivering the newspapers. We decorated the tree and read the Christmas story from the Bible–usually the writings of Luke. Then we went to bed. A very exciting day. Mother made plum pudding and fruit cake, and sometimes Christmas cake.

Twelfth Night was the end of our celebration of Christmas. Religiously for Christians, the 6th day of January was Epiphany to recognize the arrival of the Wise Men to worship the baby Jesus. If you drove around the neighborhoods nearby, all the Christmas trees with left over tinsel and icicles clinging to the branches. Sometimes, my Dad would gather up these trees in his pick-up and take them into the foothills for the deer to browse. This was sort of a sad day–the lights were turned off and the weather got seriously cold and snowy.

I still believe in Santa Claus and the spirit of Christmas which permeates the very air we breathe during the month of December. And Santa usually remembers me with a gift under my Christmas tree that I didn’t expect or remember was there. The Christmas movies this year emphasized the wish-fulfillment ability of even corner Santa Clauses–our world is indeed foundering for an anchor and a source of wish supply.

The days after Christmas seem to move more slowly–or are we just too exhausted by the fervor of the months before? Fewer phone calls. Less bulk mail to wade through. Fewer appointments require my attention. Shortened hours at the Library. Like my entire world allows me some grace time to renew myself and my genealogy projects.

How about you? Do you look forward to the Twelve Days of Christmas–those that follow the holiday–like I do? Well those slower days have ended today. And while I accomplished quite a bit of solid research and analysis time, I still have much to do. The respite is over. And the snow is falling–it has snowed every 2-3 days since Christmas. And while the weather guys say it is a drop in the bucket literally for the drought in the Western United States–it is welcome. Your favorite genealogist, Arlene Eakle

PS Stay tuned for a list of the research reported on, finished, underway, being planned, etc. By popular request I will include this data at least once per week.

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