"A California Christmas is all good. The earth rejoices, the skies give thanks and are glad. We do not have to be happy between shivers, nor imprison ourselves lest Nature slay us. All is joyous together. The rains have come, and with them the Resurrection. There are new heavens and a new earth; a turquoise arch above an emerald floor. The birds can keep Christmas, too--and a winter which even a goose has too much sense to inhabit is not fit for christians.
We roll upon our lawns, or swing in hammocked verandas, or gather roses from the bushes that over-run the house, and sniff the breeze across the orange-blossoms--while above the dark-green orchard the ieffeable snow-peaks of the Sierra Madre climb twice and tall on the blue sky as the loftiest mountain in the East. And in the air is such a tang of freshness and strength and inspiration that to drink it is like breathing champagne.
We sit out and read out, we ride, drive, walk, take a swift plunge into the Pacific surf and out. The children do not need to be burglar-proofed against colds, or croup, or pneumonia. Day-long they are are out of doors, undeterred from God and Nature, and so with better bodies and minds, and hearts--but the same old child-faith in Santa Claus."
From: Out West, Volume 3, p. 68. Published 1895.