A Kind of Pause

Archived | December 26, 2013 | By

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. It was a Christmasy show, and I loved that Mr. Keillor sang “Silent Night” and the audience sang along with him. I sang along too, even the German part though I don’t know it completely — I simply made up a few words. I do that sometimes, make up words. They function the way guttural utterances do, conveying a message for which a word does not exist. A gasp, a giggle, a sigh.
Hard to find words to describe Christmas, on the day after The Day. It was…sigh…it was a lovely time, all of it. The kids loved their gifts, the ham was just right, the array of cookies quite splendid. The faces of the people I love are fresh in my mind, the voices of those far away who called with good wishes linger in my ear. The music, the lights, that feeling you get sitting in church on Christmas Eve, part of a gathering, the feeling of divinity, the Holiness of the Night. And, surrounding all of it, the keen presence of the past, the memories of Christmases come and gone. Not sad, but a bit wistful thinking back to What Once Was.
And now we look to What Will Be, on the home stretch to the New Year, the eager push toward January, a sense of shedding this year and rising up into the next. I’ll admit I’m grateful for these few days of a kind of post-Christmas limbo — the kids on vacation, a dinner party or two on the calendar, some shopping (fruit is #1 on the list), cleaning up the house, a nap here and there, a few good movies. Time to catch up, center oneself, think ahead to what the New Year might bring.
Consider these days a kind of Pause, and take them, and do the things you didn’t get to do this year, or maybe put off, or simply didn’t think of doing but want to now. Once 2013 goes, it’s gone. Finish it off in your own personal glorious way, whatever that may be.
Here’s a new recipe, something different and rich and a bit on the healthful side. Makes a nice treat to wrap up and deliver with good wishes for the New Year.
Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars
2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup coconut oil
¼ cup honey
12 ounces dark chocolate
Warm coconut oil just until it is liquefied. Add shredded coconut and honey. Combine well. Line shallow baking pan with parchment paper and press mixture into baking pan. Freeze or refrigerate until solid.
Melt chocolate and spread over coconut.
Cut into squares and keep refrigerated.