Beginner's Heart

Beginner's Heart

peppermint bark and merriment

peppermint barkHi, my  name is Britton, and I L♥VE food. Well, I love good food. I’m not interested in crappy calories; only the best! And over the holidays? I’m in (as my Aunt Bonnie would say) hog heaven! Although they’d have to be VERRRY spoiled hogs…

Right now, it’s peppermint bark time. I adore peppermint bark! I mean, chocolate & peppermint? Creamy & crunchy together? One bite & I’m 9 years old again, at Aunt Velma’s, sneaking to the footed crystal candy dish…


And I love ham, although I don’t eat it any more. No pigs, remember? But I still love the smell — that salty/sweet tang of good ham. And eggnog, and ambrosia, and pie, and roast and Yorkshire pudding and hot chocolate with marshmallows and all the treats we fête ourselves with. After all, if it’s Chanukah or Kwanza/ Solstice, Harvest, or December 25th, it deserves our very best food, dress, conversation… And merriment.

Because whatever your reason for this season is, if it doesn’t make you happy, it’s not much of a celebration. Celebrate: from the  Latin celebrare, which one article says means ‘to assemble to honour.’ Another says it means ‘to honour a day or occasion by festivities.’ Either will do, and as the Christian Science Monitor points out, we do gather together (a much more informal word for ‘assembling’!). And that gathering should be FESTIVE (read: fun), folks.


~ from Visual Thesaurus

~ from Visual Thesaurus

Instead, we worry about the presents. Fret over the food. Stress over the entire celebration. And miss whatever our point is: birth, rebirth, Solstice, culture, family… As the Dalai Lama says, faith should bring us happiness. As should its celebrations. Whether you are Christian, Buddhist, agnostic, or Muslim, Jew, atheist or something else, the gathering of friends & family to celebrate is beyond mere ‘observance.’ You can observe something from a distance. Celebration requires full-out engagement. (Which is NOT the same thing as worry!).


So as you ready for the year’s end, grab some peppermint bark. It’s vegan! Well, at least the kind I buy is: dark chocolate doesn’t have any milk in it :). Make some hot tea, a cappuccino, or grab a glass of wine…whatever. Just take time to sit down, relax, and treat yourself with loving kindness. Breathe. And let your faith bring you joy in our upcoming celebrations.

Previous Posts

thinking of lost boys
When I hear of the serial murder sprees -- all done w/ guns -- that plague America, I think of my sons. Not always first, but always. Probably too ...

posted 4:48:57pm Oct. 04, 2015 | read full post »

pebbles, lobsters, and priorities
I went to brunch with my beloved yesterday, to celebrate our zillionth (happy!) anniversary. It was beyond heavenly: all kinds of food I ...

posted 3:33:14pm Sep. 28, 2015 | read full post »

the souls of the others
I don't normally do book reviews, much less book raves. And yet... I just finished a book that captured me completely, Sy Montgomery's The Soul of an ...

posted 3:11:31pm Sep. 20, 2015 | read full post »

the gift of friends
I am blessed with friends far better than I deserve. Colleagues; former students; girlfriends & guy friends; family who have long since blurred that ...

posted 4:35:30pm Sep. 18, 2015 | read full post »

a bowl of weeks
Remember how I told you last week that I was trying to be more mindful of time passing? And about reading in Lewis Richmond's Aging as a Spiritual ...

posted 1:41:33pm Sep. 14, 2015 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.