I think of today as new year’s day. January first is just a calendrical convenience with absolutely no astronomical significance. The solstice, on the other hand has been observed by cultures all over the world from the neolithic if not the paleolithic up to the present time. That is because it is real. It’s a holyday, not a hollowday.
The solstice is the hinge on the gate to another year; worn smooth and charged from the attention and intentions of a thousand generations. More, actually. Think of all of our ancestors who honored it as still gathered here together around the solar bonfire. Today the ancestors check in Inside of us. Inside of the children. Being alive today means we have response ability. This is a day to think about it.
The warmth of the Sun returns for us in the north, the needed coolness of night for those in the south. Give thanks and roll with it. Keep the faith, people. Happy new year everyone.