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Because it's just a few days before Christmas and some of you might be like me and still a little behind on shopping and other preparations, I thought I'd keep things nice and short this issue.

It might be a byproduct of 2020 having been such a weird and difficult year, but I've been much more in the mood this year for special Christmas traditions, old and new.

For instance, I've never been an eggnog guy, but I've been enjoying a glass pretty regularly for the last couple of weeks (and will have to take up jogging in January to make up for it). I also took some time about a week ago to put together a Christmas playlist of some of the more upbeat and peppy Christmas music I could find. I did cheat a little and included a couple of songs that aren't Christmas songs, but they still fit the spirit. You can take a look at my list on a Google doc here. I've also never read "The Night Before Christmas" to my kids on Christmas Eve, but guess what? this is the year to get that started.

There are also a couple of things that I didn't know about before this year, and I'm going to incorporate them for the first time:

- The King's Choir in Cambridge has been broadcasting "A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols" on Christmas morning every year since 1928. I'm going to check it out for the first time this year; there's a version from 2015 that you can watch here.

- I love Dylan Thomas' villanelle "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night," and there's a recording of him reading his "A Child's Christmas in Wales" that you can listen to on Spotify or YouTube.

They might seem goofy and unnecessary sometimes, but traditions are the binding agent from one generation to the next, and they are an easy way to build something lasting. Here's hoping that you are able to take some time to enjoy a few old traditions this week, and maybe add a couple of new ones while you're at it. See you in 2021.



Twitter @jwyllys

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