Monday, December 22, 2014

Peace on a Winter's Night--and Day

Have the oven on and haven't made the fruitbread going in it yet. Wasteful. What a big footprint I have at time, even allowing for big feet.

I wanted to blog again before Christmas Day, however.

It has been a better than usual season, and I think making the breads is a part. I had bought a dozen red sacks to give my breads in, and am startled I have only two left. I don't know how good others think they are, but they satisfied my tastebuds, and I didn't do it for reaction. I realize I did it as a positive action for me. I have 2-3 more to make and I'm done. AND I kept a loaf of the banana bread for breakfasts and snacks last week, a loaf of the cranberry nut the week before. Have a third earmarked for Christmas morning. That, some ham and a fresh mandarin orange will make a fine breakfast. Leaves room for the Feast yet to come.

Poor Brody still has his cone and two new staples in the top of his incision because I let him run around the house too much. He is feeling SO fine, and he has to stay in the bathroom except for potty breaks and food. He is whining a bit, which pains me, too. Next vet visit Dec. 39. I am not optimistic. This morning, the 30-pound dog pulled the leash completely out of my hand to chase some birds on the lawn.

But all the gifts are wrapped and dispersed. My home is back in order--except for all the baking stuff staying out in the kitchen. One dish to make ahead tomorrow, then a chocolate pie on Christmas Eve Teenage granddaughter is making her most excellent cherry pie NOT using pie filling, but real cherries. It is so very good--a little tart, and the whipping cream or ice cream is just an added note, not overwhelming sweetness. If we even bother adding it.

I've been observing and participating more fully this year. I do believe we have a huge effort made by stores to get us away from family, even on Thanksgiving Day, and go shopping. Well, except I know families that enjoy shopping together. I don't think starting "the shopping season" after Halloween pays off. I think shopping more around the whole year makes more sense, but I apparently don't have a lot of herd mentality.

Actually, I like persons well. It's people in large quantities I am not fond of. I don't think it used to be better; it wasn't. The one thing I miss that was better was less pressure--or I perceived less--to stop and breathe every now and then. Oh, we can still do it, but it is harder. More pulls away from relaxed family times, though many have them. More manufactured food to eat to save you time to do more manufactured fun someone wants you to pay to do. Honey, that stuff without the preservatives just purely tastes better, even if you do have to eat it up fast because unlike Twinkies, it gets stale.
And if you live anywhere you can go out ant actually see a starry night, it is peaceful, smells good, and beats any house decorations around. Many don't have that option any more. Our perpetual lighting and huge cities hide the actual world and its peace from us.

Christmas is a cultural holiday celebrated and enjoyed by persons of all faiths and none at all. It is a religious occasion as part of the holiday for some. Despite the songs, it is seldom magical, and though happy, often not joyous. It brings out generosity in people, and that's a good thing for everyone. Humans are hardwired to get a bigger kick out of giving than in the getting--or most of us are.

This year, it has been a journey to peace, one of the greatest gifts the holiday can bring. It has been my journey. I have spewed and snarled and kicked less and less at this season than in so many, many years. I have made my peace, at least for now. I may have to do it all over again next year, but at least this year, I know how.

Maybe I'll write a book.

I write, of course to be read, but that is for my own pleasure, too. Whether you celebrate Winter Solstice, and I have some friends who do, or any other holiday, I hope you have happiness and peace. Above all, peace.


clairz said...

I like the way you think. Imagine, connecting the idea of peace with the celebration of holidays--but that's what we're aiming for, too. I worked so hard this year to make our rooms spare and uncluttered that I almost resented the idea of getting out Christmas decorations, but with just one or two items in each room, we stayed spare while adding a few reminders of the joyful season. The rooms still made me feel calm and at peace.

Please have a happy and peaceful New Year, Charlotte!

charlotte g said...

It is a great New Year's Day. Cloudy, some freezing RAIN falling, making the trees bushes glisten with clear ice. Footing pretty good, freezing, barely, but little wind. A good day for cornbread and blackeyed peas. Claire, it always surprises me how we are working on the so many of the same things. Have a wonderful adventure or two or three this year!