Sunday, November 30, 2014

NaBloPoMo complete


The last day of Nablopomo is here.  Over the course of the month, I’ve written some pretty boring posts- stuff nobody really cares about-I’m sure, but I have completed the exercise.
I’ve applied some stick-to-it-iveness, which can’t be a bad thing. 
There hasn't been a lot of time to devote to this project, but a year from now, or two, I’ll have this rather sketchy record to remind me of what was going on in our lives. 
My recently downloaded Timehop app has convinced me of the value of that.  
Because of Timehop, I am reminded that three years ago today I finally got to hold Clay for the first time.  He was 36 days old. 
Reminders and being thankful usually go hand and hand.  It's good to consider all the good gifts in our lives.  
Anyway, I’m thankful for the gift of November, and the last few days of the month that have warmed up considerably and made it more comfortable to decorate the porches for Christmas.  
I'm glad to get to spend a little time in the fresh air before a hectic holiday season begins. 
I’ll wrap up the blog posting series with this quote from Jimmy Carter that kind of bridges my weekend and the Christmas season approaching. 
“It is good to realize that if love and peace can prevail on earth, and if we can teach our children to honor nature’s gifts, the joys and beauties of the outdoors will be here forever.”

Here are some of those joys and beauties:  







Day 29: Teach them to hike while they are young.





We just got back from an afternoon of hiking and rambling around the hulking cliffs that surround Bear Track Lake.  It’s a challenge to hike with small children, but I think it is well worth the time and trouble to instill a love of nature in them while they are young. 
We’ve been dragging our own kids around on hikes since they were babies.  We carried Hannah into the bowels of the earth (at Mammoth Cave), when she was only six months old. 
Now she has kids, and they’ve both been spelunking.  One is three months old; the other is three years old. 
Our afternoon hike sounds like a pretty minor expedition compared to some taken by one of my heroes, Mary Jane Butters. 
Mary Jane lives in Idaho, and she’s written several books that focus on living an organic life “farm-girl style.” 

She has written about the time she carried her daughter (about two years old) more than 50 miles on a backpacking trip.
She'd probably laugh at our short hike, but we enjoyed the time exploring and just being outside.  

A little time to disconnect





I was without internet service for day 28 and day 29 of my NaBloPoMo challenge, so I’ll be posting a couple of days late, although I wrote this on the correct day, I promise. 
The gals and I-my sis, her daughter, my daughters and the two grand kiddos, decided to skip the black Friday madness and rent a cabin not too far from home. 
So here we are, nestled on the edge of a small lake in a little cabin, and we are taking it easy. 
The lake covers seven acres, according to the owner, and its waters are blackish from the leaves that have fallen in and stained it with tannins. Kind of reminds me of the Black Lagoon. 
A couple of caves are nearby that we are planning to explore tomorrow. I wish it were a bit warmer so we could spend more time on the nice deck that overlooks the water.  Or paddle in one of the boats docked on the bank. 

For now, though, we are snug and cozy indoors.  The babies are sleeping, and I enjoyed reading a half-dozen Curious George stories to Clay before he went to sleep.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The tree is up!

Well, the big tree is up. It isn't decorated, but the lights are on.  So there's a start.

I've overcome my inner Scrooge, and the decorating has begun--no easy feat after a big meal followed by a few varieties of dessert.

Seriously, I've had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  The food was good, the company was good; I couldn't ask for anything more than to be surrounded by those I love.

I hope everyone else out there had a happy Thanksgiving too.


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Christmas after the kids grow up

I used to take the whole decorating for Christmas thing pretty seriously, especially when the kids were little.

I wanted to re-create for them the magic of Christmas that I experienced when I was a girl.
                                                                                                                                                         
Our Christmases weren't extravagant at all, but Mom put a lot of thought and care into choosing "just right" stocking stuffers and other small gifts to go with  a big gift or two.

That was no small accomplishment with there being five of us.

Now it's just me and the hubs, and I'm asking myself, is there really any need to put all that stuff out?
I love the festive look when it's all done, but I don't particularly enjoy putting it up, and I especially don't like taking it down.

Do I dare break with tradition?  With Thanksgiving coming so close to Christmas this year, I've got to decide soon.

Dunh dunh duh....                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Around and around we go….

We've just sent the last November issue of the paper to the press, and that leaves four more issues to produce this year.

The next few weeks will be filled with shopping, giving, baking, giving, decorating--all things American Christmas.  During the holiday season, I'll cover as many Christmas events as possible.

January is time to haul ourselves back onto the wagon of self-restraint.  We'll work hard for a few weeks to set goals, to organize, to lose weight, or stop some bad habit.
In a few months, we'll be after another goal, project or diversion like a beagle hot on the trail of a rabbit.

By the time one reaches mid-life, there's a predictability to life's seasons.  For sure,
you can't be too positive of what life will throw at you, but the seasons and their rituals are a constant and a comfort.

The seasons turn, and turn, and the more things change, the more they stay the same.  We go around and around until our time is up and the merry-go-round of life throws us across that great divide between temporal and eternal.

Each deadline met, each milestone past, is cause to be thankful, while at the same time they unsettle us with reminders that time does fly.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Monday Madness = Quick Post

In order to keep my NaBloPoMo deadline, I'm going to have to fire off a quick post from the office.  I've been editing scads of cute pictures from the Light up the Rivertown event, and the Excite night event on Friday night.

So, let's make this simple and quick.

I'll post a picture of Clay with one of the sweet friends who always expressed such love and concern for him when he was so sick.

Here, Clay meets Laura in person for the first time.

Aren't they cute?