Christmas cookiesThis last month of the year – when many of us are getting ready for family gatherings, yet others lose or are estranged from loved ones – maybe you are reminded, as I am, that life is short.

My own preparations for Christmas always bring to mind a tradition that lasted a dozen years. It began when my best friend and her husband separated, and Dale left everything familiar in Montreal to make a fresh start. She moved across the country to Vancouver in the fall with her daughters, 3 and 6, and a son, 8.

A few weeks before that first Christmas in a new city, I left my own two boys in the care of their Dad, Grandma and Grandpa and travelled to Vancouver for a long weekend of what I now call Christmas elfery. That’s a concentrated burst of decorating, making cookies and doing other festive things to embrace the season.

The December issue of my newsletter, Wordnerdery, describes the tradition and why I’m so grateful to have started it.

And as the year winds down, I encourage you to take stock of your own life. Are you finding joy in Christmas traditions? Are you letting work push your life out of balance? Are you taking anyone for granted or holding onto an old grudge? You just never know how short life really is. Don’t waste it.

Wordnerdery is a quick read about words, effective/expressive writing, newsletters and more, including the occasional reminder that life is short. Are you a subscriber yet? If yes, thanks for reading! If not, you can sign up right now. In keeping with Canada’s anti-spam laws and just plain good manners, you can easily unsubscribe any time.