Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Joys of Winter!

This weekend is a well needed break.  The life we have chosen is sometimes more hectic than I think we can handle.  Bear's gymnastics schedule consumes so much of our time, and this year Curly is dancing nearly as much.  When you add in the constant nagging feeling that I do not do enough with the girls' school it can become unbearable.  So  long weekend like this is really nice.  Bear still has gymnastics on Sunday, but Curly's dance was off yesterday, and Monday we have NOTHING on the calendar.  Yay!!!

So yesterday we started decorating for Christmas.  I tried putting on Christmas music, but I wasn't quite ready for it.  There is another problem.  I LOVE my fall decorations, but I am not in love with my winter stuff.  So every year when I change my stuff out I feel sad about putting away the fall things.  I guess it mirrors my feelings about the seasons.  I have never liked winter, and fall has always been my favorite.  This year will be different.  I am determined to not just tolerate winter, but try to enjoy the special things that only happen in winter!  But first I think I may buy myself a few new winter decorations.  Also, I have to figure out where to put the tree.  I love having it in my front window, but it makes my already dark living room even darker!   I think I do this every year, and every year it ends up in my front window again.  So maybe I just need to add light inside the house...

Anyway, I am determined to enjoy this winter.  I scheduled very little school for the months of Dec. Jan. and Feb.  because I knew we would be busy with dance and gymnastics competitions.  SO that means we can devote ourselves to fun.  In Dec. we will be doing LOTS of crafts.  My hope is that the girls will have homemade gifts to nearly everyone.  Not crappy stuff that will get thrown away, but nice thoughtful gifts that will be treasured.

I leave you with a poem that almost makes winter sound like fun.

A Winter Ride by Amy Lowell
Who shall declare the joy of the running!
Who shall tell of the pleasures of flight!
Springing and spurning the tufts of wild heather,
Sweeping, wide-winged, through the blue dome of light.
Everything mortal has moments immortal,
Swift and God-gifted, immeasurably bright.
So with the stretch of the white road before me,
Shining snowcrystals rainbowed by the sun,
Fields that are white, stained with long, cool, blue shadows,
Strong with the strength of my horse as we run.
Joy in the touch of the wind and the sunlight!
Joy! With the vigorous earth I am one. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Let the Festivities Begin...

Today I need to be festive.  Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season, and I want to get started with a band.  Problem is... I'm just not feeling it.  I am not ready to host.  I didn't actually get my house as clean as I wanted or as much of the prep work done over the past few days because I have been dealing with some health issues for Bear and some girl drama issues for Curly.  My parents won't be here for Thanksgiving, and instead are spending it with my brother's ungrateful family.  Then my cat knocked a glass of cold water on my head this morning to wake me up.   Not a festive alarm.  So how do I recover?  Can I recover?

A few weeks ago I was sitting at Cracker Barrell with my girls and my Mom.  Within my line of sight there were two very old couples at separate tables.  I love to people watch, and so I spent part of my time just watching.  I saw one of the couple playfully teasing each other.  Their conversations were light and warm and relaxed.  The other couple barely spoke at all, but it wasn't the comfortable silence of two people who need no words to communicate.  It was a tense, hard, cold silence broken only by an occasional clank of a fork hitting the plate too hard.  These couples got me thinking about what sort of "old person" I will be.  Will, I have grown to the point that I no longer first see red, and then have t calm myself down?  Will I be able to have compassion for those who haven't found inner peace, or will I be annoyed that they haven't figured it out yet?

This led me to think about who I am now.   Is it who I want to be?  Am I the type of person I would like to be?  The answer is sometimes yes... and sometimes no.  I realize that we are all works in progress, and as such we should be slowly and steadily improving ourselves, but sometimes I get so impatient with myself.  If I know who I want to be, and I know that it is a simple choice to be that person why don't I consistently make that choice?

And so on this festive day, I will make that choice at least for today.  I will be calm and thankful, and I will choose to be festive as well.  We only have so many Thanksgivings (my favorite holiday).  So wasting one would be to deny myself something I love.  Even worse it would be denying my family the best I have to offer.  To help me get happy, I will list some people I am so very THANKFUL for...

My husband and my girls who are my very life force
My parents who have balanced unconditional love with high expectations my whole life
My in-laws who travel here every year to help make memories with my girls
My brother and his family who remind me that there are always different viewpoints
My friend Amy who the very memory of our times makes me smile
My friend Shannon who I am able to be honest with
My friend Kim who is ready with a hug or a pat on the shoulder
My friend Heather who makes me laugh all the time
All the other people I make chat with at the girls activities for helping me pass the time in fun way

I am also thankful for the things I have like a home, a car, my couch... but those things pale in comparison for what I am most thankful for... I am thankful that I have no reason not to be festive.  Sure there are little things that aren't perfect, but I have no real problems!  If that isn't a reason to celebrate I don't know what is.

Happy Thanksgiving! Go Celebrate :-)