Essay — Auld Lang Syne

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Gifts have been treasured or exchanged. Decorations are re-boxed. The holiday tree is saving the coastline, the carolers have gone home, and the mistletoe no longer graces the doorway arch.

Resolutions that were solemnly sworn are being executed (in one way or another). All that remains of the cookies are crumbs. Leftovers from that good-luck New Year’s day meal? Finished off.

Musical memories—-“the good old days long past,” a/k/a Auld Lang Syne—-may linger, but another holiday season is over.

Now what?

For some, the end of the festivities—-and the year—-is a big letdown. For others, these days bring a huge smile and a sigh of relief. Whichever description fits you, one thing is certain: life is what you make of it.

And there are plenty of ways to make the most of life. Cruises to warm places, car rides along highways and byways, trips to theme parks. Movies, malls, and meals at fancy restaurants. Volunteering and visiting with friends. Hiking, biking, or walking. And, of course, work.


Well, sure. Here in Carpenter Country, we enjoy work as well as play. As Samuel Butler said, “Life is like music; it must be composed by ear, feeling, and instinct, not by rule.”

We’re ready. Let the music begin.




HL Carpenter is a mother/daughter duo who write family-friendly fiction from their studios in Carpenter Country, a magical place that, like their stories, is unreal but not untrue. When they’re not writing, the Carpenters enjoy exploring the Land of What-If and practicing the fine art of Curiosity. Visit Carpenter Country at


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