The last Jolly Zings of the season are flittering about my head. They’re dropping their remaining bits of glitter and tinsel upon me as I’m writing these words. Once their magic reservoirs are empty they’ll be gone.
The Jolly Zings appear along with the rest of their festive compatriots on the day after Turkey Day—also known as Rainbow Friday—and stay through the entire Holly Day season which includes the Winter Lights Festival, Bah Humbug Day, Winter Wish Day and Eve, ReBoxing Day, Glitter Eve, and Frost Flower Day.
Now, with T-shirt and Socks Day fast approaching they’ve become an endangered species—the ghosts of holidays past.
Sometimes I wish they would hang around just a little bit longer, but I know that they’re eager to move on. That’s just the way that Soul Envoys are. They’re dedicated to the celebratory occasion for which they were created and they split once their gig is done.
I believe this is what makes the Holly Days such a difficult season to part with. The festivities, excitement and little creatures particular to this time of year last for an entire month, and when all the glitter, gifts and lights are gone you’re left with nothing but grey winter-dreary.
This is why, in addition to just saying hello to the new year and goodbye to the old, I actually focus on each of the coming months individually and the wonderful, rainbow days they each contain.
The following is a quick sampler I’ve cobbled together to help me overcome the post holiday blues. Feel free to add your own special days to the list or, if you’re feeling really adventurous, start your own!
January is for hopes, dreams and resolutions. It’s also the time I like to design peace signs.
January is also the time for back to school, and, in Cratersville, I could think of no better way to “celebrate” the resumption of classes than to show up in nothing but a long t-shirt—featuring a peace sign, of course—and socks. I loved the look of shock on my homeroom teacher’s face. I usually got a suspension for my creative efforts. But heck, it gave me an extra day off, so I didn’t complain.
Also in January, my friend, Bluesy, takes it upon herself to count all the little creatures in Cratersville on Counting the Creatures Day (don’t ask me why—or how). And, the little creatures—after they’ve been duly counted—offer hugs on Hug-a-Creature Day.
February is for love, so I focus on hearts—especially for Candy Hearts Day. It’s also the birth month of my two best friends, Blueberry and Bluesy Fields. Blueberry likes to pretend that February 14 is just another day, which means that I try doubly hard to make it extra-special—for both of them.
March has reminded me of rainbows ever since a little Shamrock Creature visited my sister, Poppy, and I on Shamrock Day.
March is also time for the first festival of spring—Carnival Day! And, if the weather isn’t cooperating with my spring plans, I always like to blame the prognosticating rodent who delivered the forecast back in February.
April is the month when spring is in full swing. I always enjoy the Festival of Freedom which happens around this time of year. I also like the themes of renewal and rebirth, which are highlighted by the various spring celebrations. Fancy Hats and Baby Animals Day is a particular favorite of mine.
May is definitely a time for flowers. It’s also a time for remembering moms and their nurturing ways, which is why I’ve designated May as a time to honor all the women in my life who create—be it with their bodies or minds.
June is when the sun celebrates its longest day. The Summer Solstice is also the anniversary of my birth, which is funny since my creative powers are aligned to the Moon.
Fathers also have their day in June and, as a reward, are given unwanted presents such as ties. I’ve extended this tradition to all Creators—not just men.
July is a time for fireworks—at least it was back in Cratersville. I still enjoy a good fireworks show, though it’s really hard to get the people and creatures in the Creators Realm to understand why the accompanying apple pie, hot dogs and baseball on July 4th are such a big deal. Oh well, you can’t have everything.
August is time for the weeklong Clockwork Festival where the denizens of the retro-futuristic town of Cratersville show off their latest space age designs.
Of course, back when I lived there, Cratersville was still an iconville bound by the rules of decorum, which meant it couldn’t stray too far from the stylings of 1950’s Americana or the Googie architecture that had captured that generation’s imagination. This meant the original Clockwork Festival was a rather predictable affair.
Then the little creatures got involved and started breaking all the rules. This is how the Clockwork Festival turned into a counter-cultural event of epic proportions—a lot like Woodstock or Burning Man. It’s nice to see uptight people break free.
September means back to school. I hated school—especially once junior high began and Poppy decided to continue her formal education in the Gypsy Grove instead of in Cratersville with me. This is why, starting in the 7th grade, I designated the first day of school as Lemons and Rainbows Day. School may have sucked without Poppy, but I still tried my best to smile.
September is also time for the Harvest Festival, which is one of the four seasonal events celebrated by Cratersvillians and Travelers alike. Poppy and I liked to wander the fairgrounds eating candied apples, going on hayrides and spooking the crap out of people by animating the scarecrows—I still do.
The Traveler’s also celebrate their own autumnal festival in the Gypsy Grove during September-October. This one is more formal than the one in Cratersville and is linked to the new moon.
October is for ghosts, ghouls and goblins as the boundary between the real and the ethereal grows thin. Poppy knew the power of exploiting such a thinning. Her actions resulted in both the worst and best days of my life.
October is also the time—in many of the iconvilles—where the rules of decorum are temporarily relaxed for a day, a week or sometimes for the entire month. In Cratersville, we had an entire week at the end of the month to explore the lifestyles of eras others than ours. I ended up dressing as I always did—in an eclectic mix of the late ’60s and the early ’70 with a touch of timeless bohemian. Why would I need to experiment with other styles when I had already perfected the true me?
November is time for Turkey Day. And, thanks to an overheard wish that Poppy and I made when we were in the eighth grade, it has become a veggie-focused fun day instead of the meat-centric yum day that it used to be when we were growing up. Now, if you visit Cratersville, you will find turkeys breaking bread as invited guests instead of being stuffed with breadcrumb dressing and served to the guests.
This wasn’t the only change that my sister Poppy and I foisted upon the hapless denizens of Cratersville. Thanks to us, Turkey Day starts off early with the Little Creatures’ Parade. It used to be just a boring, black-and-white televised parade with balloons and marching bands. Now that the little creatures have taken over, it’s broadcast in vivid technicolor. You should check it out!
After dinner, everyone in town participates in an exhilarating game of Poppy Monsters. The origins of this game came from an ill-fated attempt by Poppy to initiate a Dinosaur Appreciation Day on Turkey Day. Let’s just say that things didn’t go quite as planned as the dinosaurs escaped her control.
Blueberry, always on the ready for creature chaos, came up with a nifty device to capture Poppy’s little monsters. The people of Cratersville couldn’t get enough of searching for the runaway beasts then capturing them in the magical devices. There was even a tally to keep track on who caught the most. They insisted on playing the following year and the year after that and the year after that…
December is the reason I started writing this dispatch, and here it is again!
Of course, you already know about all the various Holly Days that I so dearly love. But, there’s another day that’s just as special to me, and that’s Poppy’s Birthday. Yes, the fiery girl whose creative powers were aligned to the sun was born at the beginning of winter.
And, together—creating as the sun and moon—we filled the year with fun.
Now, that’s a year to look forward to!
—Jellybean Reds, Creator of Little Creatures