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It’s a fun time of the year at our home and a lot of other homes. We get into the Christmas season in a big way. It starts with all of us going to see A Christmas Carol at ACT Theater the day after Thanksgiving. Then, boxes and boxes of Christmas “stuff” come down from the attic and make their way to mantels, cabinet tops, tables, windowsills and just about any other place a decoration can be seen.

We’ve got a mixture of old and new; some elegant and not so elegant. And you know, some of the not so elegant things are the best. The Santa made from an old bleach bottle by one of my kids in kindergarten many years ago is priceless (to us). We even have one string of lights that was my dad’s. I know which one; it’s so old it doesn’t have the grounded plug or receptacle (the new ones have one prong wider than the other) so it has to be the last in the string of lights because the new ones won’t plug into it.

We have a collection of Nutcrackers that we make sure to add to every year. They take over our entryway for a month a year. We have ornaments that were my grandparents. They may be faded and losing paint but they still have a special place on the tree.

What’s even better this year is that after two years of economic malaise December is as busy as any other month (and busier than some were earlier this year). And it’s not just me. I’ve been hearing this from a lot of people. Attorneys are swamped with yearend work. Small businesses have seen a pickup from earlier this year continue. One business owner told me how they love to see their (very high) UPS bill because it means a lot of product is going out the door.

For many, that’s about as good a Christmas present as they could get. Let’s hope it continues into 2011.

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