Bring it on, new year. Bring on health, for me and my loved ones and friends. Bring on serenity, and bring an end to the most unpleasant Presidential election cycle I can remember.
I stayed close to home today, my parents’ home, since my foot still hasn’t improved enough to risk the day of museumgoing that J and the kids did. I didn’t exactly loaf, though. I made gefilte fish from scratch, cementing my knowledge of the family recipe for the ages, every single, idiosyncratic step, from “plug in the power converter for the European mixer and grinder attachment” all the way up to “taste test.”
I spied a project to work on while working on the fish, and that was a towering stack of recipe printouts and cookbooks on the corner of the kitchen counter, which threatened to topple over onto the dish drainer. My mom went along with it, even though it was the last thing in the world she wanted to do today. She eventually recycled about 95% of the recipes, and the rest we filed in a three-ring binder separated by category. We reshelved the cookbooks. And I got to feel like I’d done something good today. (I should turn my attention to my own home next — there are plenty of opportunities to feel good there!)
If you’re celebrating this turn of year, or even if you just need, at this point in the year, to feel like something new and shiny is beginning, then I wish you a happy one. A feeling of fulfillment that can come, regardless of whether you’ve sorted through a pile of long-unattended papers or not, whether you’ve reckoned with your demons or not.
There is always time for more reckoning. I know not everyone approaches this holiday in the same way. Whether you’re dining on heirloom recipes, or whatever you feel like cooking tonight, I’m sending you thoughts for a sweet, happy and healthy year. I’m glad to still be here to celebrate another one. This year, I’m thinking hard about what I want the next year to be, because I’m feeling lucky enough to assume I’ll be around for it.