The tradition of releasing Chinese paper lanterns is mysterious, but scholars generally agree that the first paper lanterns were created and launched about 2,000 years ago. They gradually became part of a festival tradition, and people write wishes on the lantern before lighting them and releasing them into the sky, where they float for a few minutes before burning out and returning to the ground.
I spent Independence Day weekend this year down at the Hood Canal with friends and we released our paper lanterns into the sky after dark one evening. I can’t tell you what my wish was, as I’m still waiting for it to come true…
This photo of my friend Brandon releasing a lantern is one of my favorite photos of the year. It reminds me of my new beginning; my chance to this time have my wishes come true.
I hope that everybody had a Merry Christmas and stuffed their faces silly with lots of high calorie foods and fantastic wine. I know I did! Over two days, we had prime rib, ham, mashed potatoes, au gratin potatoes, kale salad, squash salad, roasted beets, rolls, trifle, and red velvet cake (I know I’m leaving some things out…). I also enjoyed sparkling Riesling, Picpoul Blanc, Merlot, apple cider, more apple cider and a taste of Zinfandel. Not to mention fun with family, the glow of Christmas trees all lit up with sparkling ornaments, warm babies and warm cats snuggled on my lap (even at the same time!), and some lovely thoughtful gifts received and shared. To top it all off, it wasn’t raining on the Pacific Northwest, and Jon and I enjoyed a nice hike at one of Washington’s National Historic Sites with his dad, brother and sister. The views of the ocean and the farmlands of Island County at Ebey’s Landing National Historic Site were amazing, and unobscured by the clouds that are all too typical this time of year.
My thoughts go out to everybody who is struggling with illness or loss, or is experiencing the full force of mother nature, like my family in Michigan who are without power during an ice storm. I am thinking of you all. Even though I’m a day late, I want to wish a heartfelt Merry Christmas to all. I am truly blessed.