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Happy Holidays

What do the holidays mean for you? For so many people, it is a time to get together with family and friends. It is a time of sharing food and drinks, giving and receiving of gifts, and often reminiscing of memories fond and sometimes even funny. It is festive lights and decorations, wonder and anticipation for the young (and even some of the old), and a time take a pause from the day to day reality and relish in a moment of bliss.

I've spent many holidays in different places, but that time between mid-December and mid-January, it is my favourite time of the year. This year, I have lived this experience in beautiful Spain. What do the cities in your country look like? Do you take the time to stop and look? Admire the beauty this time of year offers. Depending on where in the world you are, you may be in the middle of a cold, snowy winter wonderland or a lush, tropical, summer dream. Wherever you might be, I hope it's full of lots of lights, and that you take time to admire them.

What would the holidays be without the food and drink? Those delicious treats that tickle your tastebuds and warm your soul. Food that is made to be shared with family and friends. A time full of the treats we make once a year that always make us smile. Rich and decadent desserts that fill our mouths (and often our waistlines) with that special something extra. Just looking at them makes your mouth water.

While this time of year is known for Christmas in so many parts of the world, the symbols that represent can differ. While Santa Clause is fairly widely known, The Three Wise Men are even more popular in Spain. Regardless of the country, if you celebrate Christmas, you've probably seen a nativity set...either set up on a table in your or someone else's house, on a front lawn or in front of a church. While some are elaborate and grandiose, others are small and intricate. Let me introduce you to a place, that turns the entire village into a life size nativity scene, San Lorenzo de El Escorial. It's unbelievable!

Wherever you spend your holidays, I hope they are filled with love and joy, family and friends, and delicious food and drink. Cheers to another year. May this one be the best one yet!

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