Happy New Year!
The title of the familiar New Year’s song roughly translates to “days gone by.” It is a useful song to say goodbye to something that is ending, which is why we typically hear it this time of year.
The song is based on a poem by Robert Burns, but even his poem was based on a ballad “Old Long Syne” printed in 1711 by James Watson.
Traditionally, the 1939 recording of Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians is the version played in Times Square every year after the ball drops. Prior to Lombardo’s death in 1977, he performed it live at Times Square every year.
As the song was played again this year, I started thinking about traditions and how important they are in our lives.
I thought about the traditions in our family. Immediately, it brought to mind images of The Dane craving pumpkins with the kids and now craving them with a new generation. I thought about the smiles and grossed-out faces as they reach into the pumpkin to remove all the gooey parts, careful to set the “guts” on a tray so they can pick through it later to gather all the seeds which we will toast later on while we watch The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. I recalled that our youngest daughter told me that she continued this tradition in our absence this year, which is a bit bittersweet. I’m glad to know that the tradition will continue once we are gone.
New Year’s sometimes has that sort of feel to it to me. I love all the excitement that goes along with it: Picking out an outfit, getting dressed up, going out on the town, dancing till midnight and knowing that I have The Dane to kiss with the clock strikes 12. But there is always a melancholy blueness just beneath the surface.
This year, I picked at that tender spot just a little to see if I could figure out why it’s there. Then it hit me.
While New Year’s is a celebration of the razzle dazzle and hope that the New Year brings with it, it is also a night that bears some reflection of the year that is passing. Sometimes that means looking back at things that are less pleasant – old hurts that haven’t quite healed. I spent a silent moment in the midst of all the pomp and circumstance to reflect on those somewhat painful moments, mainly the passing of my father. The Dane was laughing nearby and turned to me. I saw a look of concern cross his face. It is doubtful that he even realized it was there, as I immediately raised a glass to him, put on a beaming smile and pushed away the sadness so that I could enjoy the rest of our evening.
For the past few years, I’ve completed the 365 project. It has become a tradition for The Dane and me to spend a little bit of our New Year’s winding down in our PJ’s, sometimes a glass of champagne, propped up in front of the computer looking over our year. We laugh about the funny things, discuss the unfinished things and marvel at how quickly the time passes by. I very much enjoy this new tradition which starts with our New Year’s Eve photos. The first one ends out the previous year – that’s the one of us dressed up and ready to go. The first one of the New Year is of us in our PJ’s generally toasting each other, but it varies.
2016 was a roller-coaster year. We lost Pat Harrington Jr – Dwayne Schneider from One Day at a Time; David Bowie, Alan Rickman (that hurt my heart), Dan Haggerty (Grizzly Adams), Glenn Frey (The Eagles), Abe Vigoda (Fish from Barney Miller), Paul Kantner (Jefferson Airplane/Starship), Joe Alaskey (voice of Bugs Bunny), Vanity, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird), Sonny James (Singer), Nancy Reagan, George Martin (The Beatles producer), Merle Haggard, Chyna, Prince, Morley Safer (60 Minutes), Alan Young (Mister Ed), Muhammad Ali, Garry Marshall (writer – Happy Days, Mork & Mindy, The Odd Couple), Gene Wilder (Willy Wonka, Young Frankenstein), Lady Chablis (Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, Savannah, Ga.), Alexis Arqueete, Arnold Palmer, Leonard Cohen (singer-songwriter Hallelujah), Leon Russell (singer), Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch), Ron Glass (Barney Miller), John Glenn, Alan Thicke (Growing Pains), Zsa Zsa Gabor, George Michael, Ricky Harris, Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds and William Christopher (Father Mulcahy – M*A*S*H). We will miss them.
The Dane and I looked over our album to see our highs and lows, our accomplishments and ended up discussing how we can make improvements both personally and together in this new year. Of course, that lands us right into talking about Resolutions.
I hope all of you had a very happy and safe New Year’s. Also, I hope this new year brings you all the best.
Thanks for stopping by today!
Dress – SL Fasions Bolero Party Dress from Belk.