Saturday, March 13, 2021

Popcorn

The sugar plum tree in front of our house has popcorned. 

Many years, this happens in the week of warm weather we always get in January. But this year, I waited and waited. And that was just fine with me.

Something to keep looking forward to, that I knew was going to amaze me, because it always does. That's the kind of year it's been. Marking time with the small things, the cyclical changes of nature outside my window. 

A year ago, I was visiting my mom in the hospital after hip surgery, required to grab a mask from the box on the reception counter.  I only wore them in the halls. I threw them away once outside. Weeks later, masks were scarce so I was sewing them, sending a few to my parents and sister.

I listen to NPR. I knew COVID-19 was coming way back in February. I figured it was already here. On March 9th, I predicted they would close schools the next week. My kids' last day was March 12. I was off by a few days. They haven't gone back.

And that is just fine with me. 

Oh, I want them to be able to go back. Zoom school is exhausting for everyone, and my kids are teens! I'm not worried about the academics. My daughter and son have suffered emotionally--their worlds should be expanding right now. That's where the twinge in my gut comes from. 

Our middle and high schools will likely both be open within the month for modified attendance. But there have already been close calls with the small extracurricular cohorts they have been operating, so no thank you. 

The risk to them may be statistically small, but it's still too much. Valerie should be eligible for the vaccine in May. My fingers are crossed that Andrew can be vaccinated this summer after it is deemed safe for his age group.

I got my first shot last Monday due to my educator status. My husband got his last week, at a lucky fluke word of mouth pop up clinic. He has an underlying condition that puts him at higher risk. So, that's just fine with me.

My parents and sister are vaccinated. Hope is on the horizon. But, the horizon's far off yet.

Go ahead and get some pretty new masks for summer, because we should all be wearing them for a while longer as we round a corner in this pandemic. As we turn into spring of this next year.

The past year has shown me sadness and grief and ugliness, but also perseverance--and more time together with my kids. 

And popcorn. Early in the pandemic we started family movie night every Saturday with popcorn. And if we keep it up--that will be just fine with me.

Monday, February 22, 2021

Rest


This is the view from the swing in my front yard. 

I have spent a lot of time here in the past year. Not so much in the past few months, but now that the weather is warming a bit, I'm drawn to it again. I got the cushion and pillows out of the closet. They are upholstered in warm red/brown/yellow/orange hues with shells, hibiscus, and seahorses, however. A good excuse to order some fabric to recover them.


Countless times I have come out here with my book and not read a single page.

I'm weary. I'm exhausted. Constantly, foundationally overwhelmed. Background noise. Low level static. Ringing in the ears. Dull buzz.

I think we are all quite tired, collectively. Traumatized.


So, if I may suggest, just rest. Even when you have ten thousand things to do.


Rest.

Look up at the branches and see a heart.

Swing. Breathe.

Rest.

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Fall Morning

This was the Maxfield Parrish view out my window a few mornings ago. To me, this is the most glorious time of year. Several times throughout each day I find my heart in my throat, joy swelling up from my core. Be safe, be well, be golden and glorious.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Full Circle

I still haven't finished War and Peace. Last year I only got to page 148 before I had to return it to the library. Remember when we used to actually go into libraries?

If our current federal administration hadn't failed so fantastically at handling COVID-19, things might be different.

We can't go back, but we can decide our future leadership. So, I'll just reiterate what I said in my last post: We'll change that on November 3, 2020.

It feels like a very American thing to do.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Reading Tolstoy on the 4th of July

It felt like a very American thing to be doing.  I am grateful for my beautiful country and my precious freedom.  I am thankful we are not ruled by a dictator, just a petty man who likes to pretend he's one.  (We'll change that on November 3, 2020.)

Monday, July 1, 2019

Work Gets in the Way

I bought a hydrangea about a month ago.  Or maybe end of May?  Then we had a heat wave the next week and I came home to find it completely wilted (even though I had watered it two days before).  I knew we live in an iffy area for hydrangeas and I thought I had killed it.  It made me want to cry.  So, I poured a gallon of water into it and the next morning it looked like this again.  There's got to be some sort of significant metaphor here.

So it's July.  I haven't posted since December.  I don't know how that happened.  Wait.  Yes I do.  I got a new job as a homeschool teacher for a public charter school.  I like it a lot, but this first year was a HUGE learning curve.  Not only work stuff, but figuring out how to be a regular working mom stuff and all the stuff that goes along with that.  Stuff.

I also drive my kids--one or both--to swim practice every day.  Twice a day four times a week for my daughter.  I love that they like it so much but, wow, I never ever thought this is what we would be doing.

So.  I bought a hydrangea.  I put it in the back against the fence across the yard from the kitchen window over the sink.  I look out there often and it is a thing of beauty.  I love the way the colors of the flowers change.  It reminds me of my Grandma, though I don't remember her ever having a hydrangea or even if she liked them.  (And that makes me sad, because I feel like I should know this and now I can't ask her.)

I read one book in the last six months and I'll post about it in a few days.  Probably.  And now I am starting War and Peace which the librarian told me her son told her is just one big long cocktail party.  So, I'm thinking--beach read!

Happy summer.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Book o' the Month: The Old Magic of Christmas


The Old Magic of Christmas, by Linda Raedisch, is quite the eye-opener.  It turns out, the days between mid-October and February 2nd are chock-full of nasty characters, spirits, monsters, etc.  You have likely heard of the Krampus, but he is just one of many menacing entities you have to watch out for during this season.  However, there are also several actions you might take to help keep the baddies at bay and usher in some good luck (and presents)!

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.  It explores the folklore and traditions of Europe and beyond.  And in case you were wondering what you need to beware of on this New Year's Eve...it is moving night for Icelandic elves and if you are in Iceland, you might notice magical white frost "pantry drift" in your pantry.  Also, it is the night Finnish maidens might see the image of their future husbands reflected in a mirror. 

And, if you can swing it and you stroke a piglet this evening, you may have good luck all next year.  So with that I wish you--

A HAPPY NEW YEAR  pig balancing cones on its nose, line up of pigs along bottom of card

(image found here)