I am a bona fide Scrooge when it comes to Christmas. The kid-me and the adult-me never came to a meeting of the minds about a holiday that for me, is filled with emotional land mines. As a result, I have to tread lightly in order to keep that holiday spirit going until New Year's.
The first of December, I always carefully unwrap the most precious of all my Christmas memories, the twinkle lamp that my mother gave me that matched the one we had when I was a child. She found it in a thrift shop. My dad re-wired it and they were both bursting with excitement the day they brought it over to surprise me.
As a child, I was smitten by the original's warm glow and happy twinkle. I can still see myself snuggled on the corner of my parent's couch half watching the lamp and half watching Charlie Brown's Christmas. Of course in my mind, at the same time, snow was falling. Once or twice it did but more often than not it was cold and rainy. No matter. Mom would fire up her fake fireplace, put Mitch Miller on the stereo and no matter what was going on in the world outside, we would be safe and warm in that happy Christmas Land that the adult-me has a hard time finding these days.