t's been one of *those* weeks... you know, one of those weeks where a whole seven days happens between posts. I'm not a fan of *those* weeks, but lately, with the crush of work and life and family and the holidays, well, it's just going to be what it's going to be.
Meanwhile: Friday evening + my guys + peacefulness + fireplace + holiday anticipation + fondue with a friend today = a very grateful girl.
The glow of holiday lights is something that always fills me with joy. Remember, I'm the possible-eccentric who wants to have twinkle lights up all year long... But I am grateful for Christmas lights (of any color), which impart a holiday feel wherever they are strung.
For the past few days, whenever a decision has been needed or a specific choice has seemed a little overwhelming, my default has been, "let's talk about that at the first of the year." While I'm not one for deferring items of importance, it just seemed--in many cases--to be the best approach, rather than rush through something and have to circle back in 10 days. Between now and then, I'm grateful for the mental space and clarity I'm anticipating. I figure putting it out there to the Universe to manifest is the first step, right?
In that mental space, I want to do some thinking, planning, scheming... all good, of course. I would never use my mental space for evil... or would I? (Cue maniacal laugh, which never really suits me. So, nevermind.) But I have been thinking for far longer than just the past week or so: "When we get to the holiday break, I want to take some time to think about X. Plan for Y. Plot and scheme a way to accomplish Z." Happily this break coincides with the end of one year, the beginning of another--coincidence? I think not.--so my planning may or may not take on the ring of resolutions. I am grateful for new years, for blank slates and clean notebooks.
This time of year is fraught with out-of-whack expectations, dashed hopes and remembered loss. I know many people grappling with very new and very fresh loss as well, and my heart catches in my throat when I think of everything that needs to be processed in the coming days, weeks, months. There is nothing like the holidays to put a magnifying glass over any emotion and just ratchet it up. I just now caught up on one of my favorite blogs, Hollywood Housewife, who is visiting her home state of Oklahoma because of a sick niece. The last paragraph from her post really resonated: "In such a heightened emotional state, it's easy to see God everywhere or not to see him at all. I do both, depending on the hour. That's what faith really is, I think. Seeing the 'everywhere' portion as Truth and doing your damndest to dismiss the rest." I'm grateful when people are able to put into words what I'm needing, and feeling.
I'm grateful for friendships, for new friends that feel like old friends, and for old friends who knew me when. For those who saw me through rough patches, and those that only know the "now" patch, I am grateful for the blanket that is woven over and around me, and keeps me warm in love and affection. I simply could not be more blessed in the friend department.
For my guys, who know me and love me and accommodate me and spoil me, I am also grateful and blessed. Any holiday that includes the two of them is bound to be a lovely one.
Satsuma oranges are the best. I think I have eaten about four boxes of them all by myself this season? Maybe that's why I haven't gotten a cold? Well, regardless, I adore those little orange gems, and am grateful for their season, short as it is.
For color, I am always grateful, especially in this season of gray. Our Christmas tree is always a source of joy for me, with so many beautiful ornaments we've collected or been given through the years. This week the tree was given another beauty (below), and I love it!
I am grateful for quiet. Even though we have not be honored with the blanket of snow I keep harping on about wanting, I am surrounded by stillness at the moment--the only sound is Seth crunching away on baby carrots, and the fireplace. I love the peace, and quiet.
I hope your holiday brings you joy, peace, hope, a little contentment, love and maybe even a bit of chocolate and sparkly prettiness, if that's your leaning.