Everyday I find something happy in these holidays... from seeing a house lit for Christmas, to tying bows, I deliberately make or take cheer. Our Solstice party really puts me in a grateful and celebratory mood... I love the full house, the engagement. Gathering with my friends reminds me, in the happiest ways, that we have everything we need, and plenty to share, and that makes me feel euphoric, thankful, humble. Nothing is perfect. There is a great deal that is wrong, and trying, in the world, in daily life, in the challenges that come up at any time of the year... and I am not immune to the weight and pull of sorrow, fear, disappointment. I often find, in even my happiest moments, I'm tearful and crushed, because of what I miss, what I wish could be portioned out for everyone, how difficult it can be to hold on to hope, to courage, to love... the verb. I don't take action because I am so optimistic and confident, because of some over-idealized world view I possess. I make or take cheer to give me the courage, the motivation, the will, to keep moving forward. I believe in love, kindness, empathy, compassion, learning, growing, and sharing. I believe the rain has been a wonderful gift, the gray clouds a soft pallet to calm my angst and frustration, the wind a shake-up to strengthen my resolve and gratitude. Merry Christmas, friends. Happy Chanukah, dear ones. Be of good cheer, all. I wish you love, kindness, compassion, and shared light, every day of the New Year.