All of Our Winter Holidays


It’s Christmas day according to the Gregorian calendar, and I am taking part of the day off from work. I work a lot now – seven days a week – and probably will for a while now. Saturn is in my 10th house, leaving it’s long transit over my mid-heaven and now conjunct Venus. Incidentally, I’m also having my Venus return on Christmas Day.

Lately, I have been far more concerned with the state of my home, primarily in my ability to entertain. I do love to cook and cook for people, and I would like to host more, but this would mean making more meaningful social connections, and those take time, which I don’t have because I work so much. Perhaps 2018 will bring reprieve.

But moreover, my love affair with the winter season as gotten…hot. I love winter, and the older I get, the more I like it. Strange? I like wintery things. I like to cook. I like the fireplace, and I like the cold air. I like snow. I like being bundled up. I like the lack of bugs, the way people slow down, the way we focus on the important. I am in love with the thick, enveloping silence that falls even on Chicago streets as the snow falls, the heavy blankets on my bed that I share with someone I love, the heavy blanket of untouched snow on everything. I love eating soup and home-baked bread for dinner. I love the feeling of dry warmth from a fire place, the smell of fir trees, the feeling of snowflakes kissing my face when they fall from a lavender twilight sky.

I’ll miss winter when it’s gone. Sure: the last stand that is February will make me long for spring, and I haven’t had to deal with a Northeastern blizzard in years, but I like winter.


We are celebrating Christmas in America now. We have just had Hanukkah, and the day after was the the winter solstice/Yule. Kwanzaa will begin tomorrow. Our horrible president is bragging on Twitter that Americans are saying “Merry Christmas” again, as if they ever stopped. They never did — the only place where anyone actually thought that was in the imagination of those who work for conservative media.

When I was a child in the Fingerlakes, there was no one to not say “Merry Christmas” to, as in, there was no one who wasn’t Christian or was adamant that they be told to have a good time in some other fashion. I suppose if you had told me then that there was a war on Christmas, I would believe it, but the supposed “war on Christmas” didn’t begin until I  had lived in New York and then Seoul; apparently, it still rages on while I live in Chicago, where there is no sign of war. This is surprising, because I keep hearing from people outside of Chicago that Chi-raq is a nightmare, and someday, my horrible liberal snowflake ass will get shot in a drive by or something.

But here’s a little secret to you, a Christmas gift: Chicago is only bad in the imagination of our president and his fan club. I live in the inner city. I’m a white woman living in a pre-dominately black and latino neighborhood, and you know what? It’s fine. Yes, a few block to the south or a few blocks to the west, it gets dicey, but that pretty much describes any neighborhood in Chicago, or any large city, for that matter. There are some pretty bad places on the South Side. There are some bad places on the West Side. There are some bad places on the North Side. There are no bad places on the East Side, so let us raise a glass. 😉


Saturn has come home to roost in Capricorn, and I’m a little relieved. After Saturn transited into my 9th house, then over my Sun, then Neptune, then Midheaven, it’s finally letting go. It’s only conjunct Venus and squaring my Moon. At some point, I’m going to write an article about Saturn-Moon and Saturn-Venus contacts (alienation, loneliness), but I just haven’t had time recently, and when I sit down to write, I just don’t want to do anything but things like this. So I don’t blog much.

But what I have noticed so far is with the Sun, Venus, Saturn, and Pluto in Capricorn in my 10th house is that I really, really want to focus on home decor. Like, I’m really, really obsessed with it. I have a theory that Sagittarians don’t care about furniture much so long as not breakable, doesn’t require dusting, and is mainly just couches to crash on. However, at 38, I really want to have a house that reflects who I am: my taste, my personality. I’ve never had that. I have either lived in someone else’s home where I can’t control the atmosphere, or in a furnished apartment. When I was married the first time, my husband was such a control freak that he couldn’t deal with anything but the plainest decor or some shit his mother would pick out. During our divorce, I left most of it in the storage space when I moved, or I gave it away. None of the things in my marriage home – the furniture, the decor, the linens – ever felt as if they were mine, so why bother schlepping it around?


This is one of the coldest winters in recent United States’ history. Though I’m no longer in the Northeast and thus no longer in danger of blizzards or horrid wind chills, I am still in the North, and I am still bracing for a cold New Year. I work from home, and I cook and clean when I don’t have to work. It’s like one prolonged holiday: away from the world, the house full of the smells of baking and cooking, a fireplace burning, the world moving by and me living with so much unstructured time, keeping warm and keeping fed.

There are twelve days of Christmas: the Epiphany is on January 6th, the day reserved to celebrate when the wise men appeared to the baby Jesus to worship him. Three (or more?) magi/astrologers followed a star that lead them to the king predicted to bring people out of their misery, and when they found a baby in a barn with a teenage mother, they kept faith and gave their gifts. Of course, the king would be a poor baby in a no-name town. What’s more Saturnian than that?

3 thoughts on “All of Our Winter Holidays

  1. Pingback: I’m Only Celebrating Natural Holidays (Phenomena) Now | Fugitive Umbrellas

  2. Pingback: My Solar Return | Fugitive Umbrellas

  3. Pingback: The Fall Equinox | Fugitive Umbrellas

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