On this eve

Sheet music with blue and silver accents and printed text from O
Little Town of Bethlehem

Here we are, Christmas Eve of 2021. Another odd holiday for many of us. I am grateful to have the day off to do whatever I want, or nothing at all. Usually I am at work having a quiet day that moves slowly along. But this year we all decided to take the day and make the holiday weekend a bit longer. This year has required that sort of flexibility of thought, to change directions and try new courses of action. To gives ourselves, and others, the chance to aim for something better or at least recoup where they are at. It has been a rough 20 months, many would say past few years, and as we move into a new year I am hopeful that there will be progress on inclusiveness and equality as we do. May you all have a wonderful Christmas Day.

White or green

Let it snow text on patterned background

I can only recall a couple of green Christmases when I was a child. A sled was generally considered a safe gift to give. Now a bike is as good a bet for immediate use. Even as the weather changes the idea of “let it snow” lingers on. We like the Currier and Ives idea of snowy settings for Christmas, it feels comforting and right for the season. Even movies set in traditionally snow free areas seem to work in a scene with a nod to snow. Perhaps it is the hush snow brings, the covering of freshness that greets our eyes. Or maybe it is just the idea of what is known and regular being transformed. Whichever your holiday is, white or green, I hope it is a good one filled with laughter, good food, and those simple things we always enjoy.

Lion or lamb?

Today’s balmy weather will end with a sharp drop in temperature and strong winds. Which leads me to wonder if it means March is coming in like a lion or lamb? It doesn’t really matter which it is in the big scheme of things, just the idle observations of humans about the weather. Conversation. I am feeling particular energy spurts, though not very sustained ones, and not ones that make me want to workout! The longer days are getting a foothold, the days are turning towards spring.

The coziness of being inside is drawing to a close. Yet we will still have more winter weather roll in. Lion or lamb, March can be unpredictable, full of good surprises and wild or mild weather.

Wintering

Snowy sunset village scene

We are into those February days where a storm seems to roll through with some regularity. Tuesday seems to be the day of choice this year, as we will have 3 in a row this week. The snow will add a blanket to my plants, keeping them insulated from any biting cold that might settle in. It is nice to be able to spend cozy days with a book or in my studio when it is stormy.

I have gotten out twice on my snowshoes, and hope to get in a several more this month. That is the sort of exercise I enjoy, outdoors moving in the fresh air. Before the snow flies tomorrow I might be able to squeeze in a quick trek. The tracks today at the park showed cross country skiers, walkers and snowshoers had all felt the call to get outside, yet no one else was in sight.

When I am at work I can watch the flakes through the huge windows, it is a bit like being in a snow-globe. I have a friend who has equipped their home to age in place. They added an elevator which will allow them to enjoy one of the most amazing rooms I have ever seen. Perched on the roof is a glass sitting room that looks out over the treetops, not a neighbor in sight. The room, complete with a wood stove, would be my choice of places to watch a snowstorm from.

Shoe-ing

Snowy park with split rail fence by tree.

Now that snow is covering the ground with more building up, it is snow shoe time! Last year we didn’t get out at all, the snow fell and melted before a snow shoe date could be set. I enjoy being outdoors trekking around and seeing nature and the quiet. The pace appeals to me, the workout without the blandness of indoor exercise, and the natural movement of my arms and legs, this is how I like to do fitness. It is different from just going out our back door as we did at our old house, there we had woods for acres and acres. Which also meant more branches and undergrowth to get tangled in. Now we have the park just down the street, full of open space to enjoy, plus other nearby trails we can trek.

Though my work schedule has more hours, and I am trying to get art and DIY things done, I hope to get out at least 2 times a week. Today’s snowstorm means a fresh cover awaits, with another storm next weekend. The snow will only last so long as we are already moving passed midwinter.

Easing in

Image

stone pavilion at night with snow

We have made it thus far and the days of winter are upon us. The Christmas lights are doing their best to keep the night at bay and lift the spirits of passersby. I find this time of year can bring forth a mix of emotions; exhilaration at the clear light of midday, annoyance at the rudeness of shoppers to the clerks, and melancholy as the season is always different that what I mean for it to be. Time often gets away from me, and my best laid plans to slow down and savor the season get squeezed a bit. Even this year there is still that underlying feeling of having to rush to get some things done. However, this year it has been way easer to scale things done, to focus on the pace of each day a little bit more. We are warm, safe, fed and healthy, so other than seeing friends and family at will what more could we actually want?