At last, here we are at year’s end. Like a critter who’s readied a nest, I’ve prepared for this season when our world goes white and the fever of long, busy days is hushed. I’ve picked up the yard and mended what needed mending before the ground turns solid cold. I’ve even coaxed my senses by burning candles that smell of pine, and I’ve dowsed my coffee with all sorts of seasonal creamers past the point of recognition. Winter is my time of rest and refuel. 

I’m reveling in this season more than I ever have before, humming to nostalgic Christmas tunes and dreaming about chopping down the just-right tree that will stand proud, dressed in lights, in the heart of my home. I’m warm with that fireplace glow and I’m delighted when I step out into the biting air to hear coyotes yipping in the distance. Ever since my first winter in Montana, I’ve come to look forward to the glassy crust of snow under moonlight. 

Nature’s scene, family, and friends—there is much to be celebrated this holiday season. I hope you, too, get the chance to unwrap and marvel at all the things that fill your days with a little more magic. 

Our team at Missoula Valley Lifestyle is thankful for your readership, inspiring stories, and shared love for our community. Warmest wishes to you and yours!