It's that time of year and I love it! I love the lights, smells of spiced wine, pumpkin pie, all the colors and music. I play the Charlie Brown music all day in the house (my family puts up with that).
For me, it's not a commercial holiday, but I do love to go into the local stores and find treasures that family and friends will appreciate. Decorating the tree and wrapping presents in the evening is a treat I look forward to.
I particularly like going to visit friends' homes to see their expressions of the winter holidays, whether they display a beautifully decorated tree or menorah with blue candles. I like it all. It's a two month love fest for me. And it's easy because, while I like to give gifts all year long (and receive them), it's easier during the holidays because most people feel the same way during the season. We're nicer to each other, smile more, and celebrate at the same table more.
In the end, it's about making a connection. From a simple smile and nod from a passerby to a gift certificate for lobster (a friend sent that to me this year! I sent her one for standing rib roast. It's a really nice way to brag about the food and remember my crazy friend at the same time). If you're looking for a unique way to spend time with family, come out to the farm and take a walk around. We will be serving up some hot chocolate and spiced wine on the weekends for tours. Wear a warm coat, bring the out of town guests and take our tour (or if you're a member, take your own.)
From the chicks in the brooder, to the piglets running around, it's always entertaining- especially with a warm glass of mulled wine (or two). The top of the hill is my favorite place to walk to and it only takes 20 minutes. From there, you can see Petaluma and the north part of the Bay. After 5pm, wear a head lamp. The night lights are a sight to see!
Happy Holidays to all of you- I hope to see you here.
Tara F. Smith