It’s been a very full, very happy, and very exciting end of the year. All three of my favorite days of the year fall in the span of about a month: Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day. They aren’t necessarily the ones that most people would go for, or rather they hang on the edges of the most popular, but I guess what I love is more or less the anticipation and being at home at the Shore with my family.
There is the purity of Thanksgiving. No gifts, just a day full of cousins, aunts and uncles, good wine and delicious food. We’ve started celebrating a sort of progressive meal… wine around an outdoor fireplace at my uncle’s house in the afternoon followed by dinner at my parents’, the next morning filled with leftovers and soccer at my aunt’s house and the nearby elementary school playground. I love banana cream pie with a chocolate layer in the crust for my first slice, a small piece of blueberry next and pumpkin for breakfast, lunch and dinner the day after.
Christmas Eve has recently become the premiere night of the year in the Sherlock household. We head out to the children’s Christmas pagaent at Sacred Heart in the evening and take up at least two or three pews full of cousins whispering and shuffling to sit next to one another (this year Nik and I were greeted with open arms and one of those not-so-muffled whispers by my cousin, Ryan: Hello Mr. Pereira! Hello Mrs. Pereira!) Upon returning home dad starts up a fire in our much-too-big fireplace and the Springsteen tunes kick in… the rest of the country indulging in 24-hours of Christmas Carols while we instead hunker down with 24-hours of Bruce. Mom cooks a huge, incredible meal and we crowd around the fanciest dinner table of the year, the closest thing to a Norman Rockwell real life I can imagine.
New Year’s Eve has never really done it for me, but New Year’s Day is an absolute favorite: a completely clean slate and so much anticipation of what might be in store for the next 364 days. So many choices! I think back to New Year’s Day last year and what has fallen in between: an adventure to India and a proposal overlooking the Taj Mahal, finally seeing Goa and Ahmedabad and traveling halfway across the world to a faraway place with my very best friend. My fourth marathon, raising $5100 for blood cancer research and making a new set of lifelong friends. Following my passion, listening to my gut and starting a brand new career, full of unknowns and letting that be okay. Finally, in the fall, all sorts of new endeavors including an epic rehearsal dinner, an absolutely perfect wedding and in between, a carjacking that quickly reminded all of us that absolutely nothing is more important than the people we surround ourselves with.
I’m already itching for the start of 2011 and all of it’s potential. On May 1 I will run my fifth marathon with my cousin, Leigh, and I look forward to running on my home turf and celebrating with my family instead of venturing off to an exotic or faraway destination. Training started miserably on the treadmill last night. I’m ready to travel again and think we might celebrate our anniversary next November on the beach in Goa. Hopefully there will be other adventures in between. I am dreaming of Morocco and Brazil and (out of nowhere) Croatia. We will ring in the year at home, just the two of us with some lobsters and a bottle of Veuve and in the morning I’ll go for a run. Nothing monumental, but with a whole bunch of blank pages ahead that I look forward to filling.