I’m old enough for Medicare, but I’ve caved in to peer pressure. Even though it’s not yet December 1, I’ve hung my Christmas wreath on the front door. With all the Yuletide decorations going up in my neighborhood, I was a little ashamed of my fall wreath, even though it’s still November, people.
No doubt about it, folks decorate for Christmas a lot earlier than they used to. Add to that the fact that Thanksgiving was in the third week of November this year. Soon after the turkey was served (for the first time), people started putting up the Christmas stuff.
Me, I don’t even want to think about Christmas until all the leftover Thanksgiving stuffing, cranberry salad, and collards are gone—at least a week later.
Still, I can’t deny Thanksgiving /fall is shifting into Christmas/winter outdoors. Today, it’s cold and there are touches of red in my yard. In a couple of weeks, I’ll bring in some of these Nandina berries for a Christmas arrangement.
The two holly trees on the side of my house always have beautiful red berries around Christmas. The two holly trees flanking my front door haven’t had any berries in a good ten years. I don’t understand the difference. If the birds are eating them, wouldn’t the berries be gone on all the trees? Why do holly trees that once had berries no longer produce them? Does it have something to do with some kind of missing pollination? Nature can be complex.
Inside the house, my Christmas cactus is beginning to flower. Come on, come on, I tell it, you can do it. Burst into bloom for the season, the way you’re supposed to. The way you were blooming the year my husband bought you at my request, instead of yet another poinsettia.
Red is the commercial color of Christmas. I’m already seeing lots of it and will see even more as I wade deeper into the holiday season. But the biggest splash of red that’s caught my attention thus far had nothing to do with Christmas.
Back in early November, I was in a Charlotte Chick-fil-A when I saw a lovely young lady in red. “Do you mind if I take a picture of your dress?” I asked. She fluffed her skirt and looked my way.
The occasion? I wasn’t sure and hated to further interrupt her lunch by asking. My guess is she was celebrating her quinceañera. In many Hispanic cultures, a girl’s 15th birthday is a big deal. It’s a coming of age thing, sorta like a cross between a debutante event and a sweet sixteen party.
My first vision of red–before the early Christmas decorations or Mother Nature.