In spite of our slow start to the season this year, Christmas has arrived in full force and I am all the way in the mood. Something about deep snows and bright bluebird skies does a lot toward making things seem all as they should. Mo is finally over her cold and I am over the dizzies for the most part. I decorated the house, put up the outside lights and the snow started falling ten days ago and hasn’t stopped since. We get a little break now and then, but Mo has plowed every single day but one and we have been shoveling the driveway and snow-blowing the pathways every day as well.
Somehow the snows make me feel all is right with the world. Climate change is real. Call it global warming, global weirding, blame it on whatever makes you happy, (I have no idea why this science is colored by politics, but that is another story and I’ll save the arguments for elsewhere) but the real part about climate change is that things will get weird. Things are weird. We didn’t have any snow at Rocky Point for most of December, and it just felt weird. Now, finally, on schedule, the big snows have arrived. And somehow it makes me feel that the climate is giving me a bit of a reprieve. Things are normal. It is cold. It is snowing. I am shoveling and Mo is plowing. It is a good thing. The weather, at least for the moment, and at least here in the West, is doing what it is supposed to be doing.
I worked last week, and still managed to get presents ordered and shipped for the great grandchildren scattered around the country. Presents for my daughters were already taken care of in Prague, gifts to kids and grandkids in the mail. I don’t do as much as I would like to to, but as much as I can manage, and it is enough. This week I started cooking and baking, with a few treasures that Mo and I will never be able to eat, so of course we will share with kids and neighbors. The smell of baking makes things seem all right with the world as well. It has been a quiet time, and a good time.
Daughter Deborah sent oranges and lemons from Texas to brighten my winter days. Daughter number two and her husband are doing Christmas in Mazatlan this year, a last minute decision for a much needed vacation. Son John in Missouri is enjoying his extended family there and we had a nice long conversation the other day. Thank goodness for telephones and email with family scattered all over the country. I hope that someday I can get everyone together in one place at one time, but for now I’ll be grateful for what I have.
Mo gets dozens and dozens of cards from old friends and family. I know I have friends, I know I do. But I think I get about 4 cards. My friend Jeanne never lets me down and always sends an amazing photo of herself somewhere in the world. This year her photo was lovely and full of tropical flowers, even though she is now back home in Vermont. Some of the young soil scientists I have had on my crews are now having families of their own, and I get a few lovely cards with wonderful photos of their babies and families. I really treasure them.
The rest of my friends are just as wonderful as Mo’s friends, but they are all on the internet, hooked up to facebook, and GPlus, and Christmas cards seem to have gone the way of the handwritten letter. I gave up this year and only sent cards to the folks who sent them to me. Is that petty or what?! I had an excuse. I was dizzy. I didn’t even send out the Christmas letter. I resort to the new standby…”want to know what I have been doing? Go read my blog.”
It is Christmas Eve. Tomorrow Melody and her family will be here to spend the day eating, laughing, and sledding in all the wonderful snow. Last year we went for a walk in the woods without a speck of snow to play in, so we are all looking forward to it. I'll have ham, a great one from the local “real” meat store, and I made a luscious peach pie from the Sunset peaches I froze late last summer.
Mo has been building a big fire in the cabin to try to get the snow to slide off the roof. Tonight we decided to “go to the cabin” for our Christmas Eve traditional clam chowder supper. Instead of a long drive to the mountains, we just had to walk down the steps and across the driveway. I carried our little back porch fiber optic Christmas tree and we opened a great bottle of dry Riesling to accompany our meal. The cabin was so warm we had to leave the door open. Turned on the radio for some Christmas music and reminisced about the past year. It has been a good one with lots of travels and friends, and projects started and finished. Another year gone by. I am truly truly blessed.