Definitely not a white Christmas.

I have had firm rules in place for the last 4 years about our holiday cards. 1) They are illustrated by me, 2) they are based on the theme of "giving", 3) they are paper, 4) they are mailed, 5) they are non-denominational. This year only one of those five rules survived.

The holidays have been to me, for 33 years, snowy, cold, and wintery. Around September when it gets to be about 50 outside, I usually start making candles for gifts, crocheting and knitting things, and by late October hatching the idea for the card.

This year we moved to L.A.

It's still in the 60's even though Christmas is 13 days away. My yarn, crochet hooks, knitting needles and candle supplies are all stored on shelves. The trees still have green leaves on them, and every street has the incongruous site of santas and reindeer on green lawns with holiday lights all over them. It's weird. Therefore, this year, so is our card.

However, it wouldn't be a card from me without some sappiness, so I included an excerpt from Francis Pharcellus Church's reply to Virginia O'Hanlon's question of whether or not there is a Santa Claus.

I hope that you have a great holiday whether you are in sunshine or snowstorms.

"Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world."