Back in “the old days,” my late husband and I started a tradition on New Year’s Eve. After the children were in bed, we would comfortably sit on the living room couch, open a bottle of wine, light a few candles, listen to the continuous countdown of the year’s top hits on the stereo, and browse slowly through the pages of the old kitchen calendar.
Our kitchen calendar was the perfect tool which reflected what took place during the year; penned in birthday parties, hockey games, appointments, hockey games, special projects, hockey games, out-of-town visitors, hockey games, doctor appointments, oh, and did I mention, hockey games? Memories of the months just passed gave us reasons to laugh; collectively, a reason to be thankful for all that we had, namely, our family.
One year, I had the bright idea (or too much wine) to add a new ritual to this endeavor, we would write our predictions for the coming year, seal it in an envelope, label it, “Do Not Open ‘Til New Year’s Eve” and staple it to the last page of the calendar. Typically, our predictions were focused on our own little family rather than world events. Some of our predictions were way off base while others seemed intuitive; regardless, we were quite entertained with our predictions which occasionally reminded us of events we forgot!
Since the boys have grown up and moved away, the kitchen calendar now hangs on the fridge door rather than a kitchen bulletin board. Instead of its days being filled with conflicting hockey schedules and activities for the boys, the calendar is much less full, nearly empty now, except for doctor appointments. After Gerrit died, I abandoned this old tradition of reviewing the year, reading the previous year’s predictions and writing new ones. Yet, I still save every kitchen calendar; I guess old habits die hard.
As this new year unfolds, I choose rather than to make resolutions, to have more “hopes” – I would hope to have less doctor appointments on the calendar, better health and more fun penciled in.