Yesterday was Winter Solstice and a near perfect day for us. This is my favourite holiday to celebrate. It was so nice to spend the day together- intentionally and with love.

Counting down to Solstice is always fun but this year Lily and Leif used the calendar on their own, not needing my help. Every day Lily patiently gave Leif the space to figure out what day it was and find the corresponding pocket. Lily would then hang each piece on the calendar. Because Solstice was taking place on the 22nd this year, as it does once in a while, Lily and I made a garland of snow for the last day that hung across the top of the calendar. We didn’t get snow this year on Solstice but we could at least imagine our winter scene with it. (click to see more detail)

Happy Solstice

(just because the days are getting longer now doesn’t mean we’re seeing the sun. I wish I had better light for picture taking but alas…)

We’d received a package from Erin, Scott, Matthew and Brendan the night before. We dedicated a good five minutes to simply holding the package and making guesses about what was in it. It was a bit pouffy and not too heavy. Lily thought maybe sheep’s wool or a pillow. Leif was sure there were skis inside because the Canada Post package had a picture of someone skiing on one side. I should have filmed the unwrapping of the package! Lily could not believe that Matthew would take the time to create such a precious felt horse for her- with a removable blanket/saddle no less. She’s been swooning ever since and it hasn’t left her side. Leif insisted that we play the Go Fish game as soon as possible that he unwrapped. This is the one card game he has the patience to play and the beautiful deck is pictured with BC wildlife like mountain caribou, wolverine and cougar. Absolutely perfect for us. The kids were enthralled when I read aloud Brendan’s funny story. The pop up card that Matthew made inspired a variety of pop up cards to be made the next day.

Treasured gift

Go Fish!

We packed up and ate our lunch around a bonfire at Oliver Lake. Do you remember last year when everything was covered in snow and we could skate on the lake? This year was a bit more…. mucky. My expectations for a “good” day are way low so I was really happy with the weather. It was only spitting intermittently and we had a lot of dry firewood. The dogs ran around, we ate smores, did experiments with burning sticks on the thin sheet of ice on the water’s edge. Leif road is bike and we just generally hung out and enjoyed being with each other.

Happy SolsticeZOOMHis mouth isn't sticky enough. He needs another smore.

Making Smores

A package had arrived earlier this day from our Squamish friends and I brought it along with the small packages I’d wrapped for my family. We’ve never done gifts before but Lily had expressed an interest in unwrapping something on this holiday. I read our friend’s card aloud and unwrapped a beautiful pot holder and set of bees wax candles! What a treat! Lily and Leif each got a small stack of books and Cam was surprised with a Kostan Lagrace halibut hoodie. Kostan is a local artist that features his work on clothing and in print of all kinds.

RidingNew sweaterRelaxing by the lake

Later that evening Cam and I made Squash and Bean Sauté while Lily got our apple memory chain started. We all sat around talking about our memories from the last year. Some were exciting positive memories and others were scary or upsetting. Here are just some of our memories:

We made wishes for the coming year while making Wish Bread. This is always a highlight of the day and we were lighted by beeswax candles that Erin and family sent. All in all it was another wonderful no stress winter holiday!

Talking about the coming year

Wish Bread

Happy Solstice Everyone!

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6 Responses to Happy Solstice!

  1. lise st. gelais james says:

    Thank-you for sharing your wonderful events !
    I’m on google + for info & Pics
    OR facebook “The Timber Guest House on Nimpo Lake, BC community pics
    OR Lise St. GElais James…still working on a website.
    Cheers !

  2. elementsofmylife says:

    Oh wow, that sounds wonderful! I never imagined so much goodness would fill your day. And here I’d thought our day was good:)

    The horse that Matthew made is adorable! What a sweet way to send holiday love to friends.

    This is such a great post. I adore the photo of your family working with the wish bread. That’s definitely something we’ll have to think about doing ourselves.

    I’m glad you enjoyed your day and that Canada Post got your goodies to you just in time!

  3. debra says:

    happy solstice to you, annie! it looks like a perfect day that just…flowed amongst you. can’t ask for anything more than that. happy turning of the wheel! and thank you for sharing your calendar – i’m so inspired!

  4. Bridie says:

    Thanks for sharing your Solstice traditions : ) We really enjoyed re-reading some of your posts from the last year, clicking back over the links you shared.

    Glad you had such a wonderful celebration.


  5. erin says:

    Happy happy Solstice!

    May the sun’s returning light always warm you and illuminate the gifts you share so freely. Peace to you and Cam and Lily and Leif xo

  6. Jennifer Rice says:

    You guys are my favourite family! I want to be adopted by you! Thanks for sharing.

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