How quiet it is sitting here in the living room so late at night. Gwen went to bed early and Tom finally slipped off too. Got tired of watching me string popcorn and cranberries I guess. Looking across the wide pine plank floors of our second story living room floor to the victorian fireplace that is still ablaze, I feel a rosy glowim in me. The Christmas tree is in the corner covered with old and new decorations…waiting for the final touch of the popcorn garland. It’s a Wonderful LIfe is playing on the TV. Rocking back and forth in my rocking chair I pick up a day old popcorn kernel and push the needle through the thickest part of it, then pushing the kernel all the way to the end of the thread and repeating that three or four times until I switch to whole cranberries, red shiny baubles that resist the needle and stain the thread as it is pulled through. Repeating again and again until the string is full. Repeating the whole process yet again and then tying sections together until finally in early morning, the job is done. No tedious task here, in the company of the fire and the familiar sounds of an old beloved movie.