wlotus: (Blackberry)
I hope you and yours enjoy the holiday weekend. I know I am!

IMG00142-20091225-1531.jpg

wlotus: (Photography II)
On Thursday night I went out with my camera to capture a little bit of Christmas, New York City style. The sights and sounds did not disappoint, and the lighter, mid-week crowds allowed me to move freely.

Angels frame the Rockefeller Center xmas tree
Angels frame the tree at Rockefeller Center.


+5 )
wlotus: (Blackberry)
While I waited for T to ride the bus across town to meet me, I watched the crew at The Pond resurface the ice.

IMG00081-20091216-1752.jpg

wlotus: (Photography II)
A child exclaims over what he sees in the Macy's window
A child exclaims over what he sees in the Macy's window as his little brother looks on.
Macy's, 34th Street, New York City
8 December 2009


Technical Notes: The bright colors of the window display partly obscured the look on their faces. Since the focus of the shot is their reactions to the display, not the display itself, I chose to display this photo in black and white. The absence of color makes their expressions clearer.
wlotus: (Photography II)
People watch the Macy's holiday display in awe

Children of all ages marvel at the Macy's Christmas window displays.
Macy's, 34th Street, New York City
8 December 2009


In recent years the magic of Christmas has gone over my head as I have focused and obsessed over other things. This year I decided I "need a little Christmas" and am making an effort to immerse myself in and enjoy the magic of the holiday. It isn't changing the issues that are bothering me, but it is providing joy in the midst of it all, and that is worth a lot.
wlotus: (Tending the Flame)
Believe it or not, I never experienced Christmas as an expression of faith. In spite of being raised in a conservative, Pentecostal home and being forced to participate in religious activities around Christmas, that is not what made the holiday meaningful for me. In fact, others' insistence on making the holiday an exercise in religious expression annoyed me and put a serious damper on my enjoyment of the holiday. The repetitive scripture readings and dry prayers were a burden I had to endure as graciously as I could manage, in order to avoid punishment; they never meant anything more to me than that (though I tried my best to make them mean more than that to me). And don't get me started on being required to memorize poems and songs to recite before the church like a trained monkey, while many of the other young people in the church of my childhood sat back and did nothing. I still get a bitter taste in my mouth when I remember those days.

For me, the magic of Christmas has always been in the non-church-based activities of the season. There is the beautiful music--I enjoy the religious music for its beauty, not because it is religious--the special television shows, and the decorations. Christmas has always been meaningful to me because of special events with family and friends, including an excuse to give them gifts from my heart. The specially-prepared foods and dressy clothing that made me feel like the princess I liked to imagine I was were the icing on the cake.

This Christmas I cannot afford to do much in the way of gift-giving, but I am getting back in touch with the magic of the holiday by listening to holiday music and holding the feelings of nostalgia close to my heart. I also intend to put serious effort into decorating our home this year. In fact, since the weather is supposed to be cold and wet this weekend, that may be what I spend this weekend doing.

For the first time in some time, I feel joy surrounding Christmas. I'm glad the magic is back in my heart.

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