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Which is your favorite?   We deny it’s possible. The parent of her children. The movie fan of films. The bibliophile of books. A clear preference demands comparison, and how do you compare a crème brulee to a chocolate pavlova? (Can you bring an extra plate so we can share, please?)

Hopefully the other 11 months won’t take it personally if I pick one to top my list. Surely they know I love them all. There’s Joyful January when I’m ridiculously enthusiastic about grand goals.  Or Fabulous February when my romantic heart overflows and we celebrate five family birthdays. Oh, and May (!), when the red bud trees are in full bloom above the dozens of smiling daffodils in the garden.

Still, I’ve decided on December.

On the 1st I’ll take my delicate December china teacup from the cupboard, light a candle, and toast the memory of my late brother Tim on World AIDS Day.

On the 9th I’ll celebrate the blessing of being born.

On the 13th I’ll be deep in gratitude for that my son Benjamin was not killed one year ago that date when his car was hit head on as he drove home for the holidays.

 On the 25th I’ll cherish twinkling lights and quiet family moments. I’ll reflect, too, on the death of my father on Christmas day decades ago. 

On the 28th, whether snow’s fallen or is forecast, I’ll remember my mother who quietly left the earth on this date when the city was covered in white.

Even as December delivers the darkest days, the solstice in the third week promises that, for months to come, each day will bring more hours of sunlight until the arrival of the summer solstices, with an absolute guarantee that crocuses will come up from the cold earth in between.

With my December declaration, I will appreciate my November more (You were already lovely, November, with your smells of sage and cinnamon in my kitchen.) All month there will be mistletoe, and when the magical month comes to a close, I’ll bid both it and the year a final farewell with a midnight kiss while welcoming in that Joyful January.

I trust the other eleven forgive my favoritism. We all need something to love, something to do, and something to look forward to. When December arrives, it’s especially true for me.

Happy December.

Coach Koenig

Do you have favorites?

How do you celebrate each month?

Can you hold joy and sadness in the same season?