Bring it on, 2012!

New Year’s Day…now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions.  Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual.  ~ Mark Twain

This is why I don’t make resolutions.  I spend the entire year paving the road to hell.  Why would I want to pour it on thicker one day a year.  Paving is hot work.

I’m reading a book called Skipped Parts.  (Can’t remember the author.)  It’s about a thirteen-year-old boy’s coming of age.  Boy, does he ever–come of age, that is.  There’s this cowboy type named Soapley who says, “Dogs only know how they feel right now.  They don’t know nothing about before or after.”   People are always commenting about the great life dogs have.  Well, that’s why!  They’re not worried about the one that got away.  They’re not stewing about whether there will be a new dog-love in their life tomorrow.  Now remember, I don’t make resolutions, but I do think learning to live like a dog is an admirable goal.  All day.  Every day.  Just call me Fido.  Or Odie.

I’m ringing in the new year tomorrow morning by singing in the Spanish choir at church.  How did this happen?  I haven’t figured that out.  I’m just hoping that the good singer standing beside me will drown me out.  I understand few people come to church when Sunday falls on January 1st.  So… we’re doing a bilingual service and our singing will be the sermon.  (I can’t stop snickering.)  The sermon?  Really!

Go easy on the spirits and have a happy, happy New Year!

Advertisements

All the wrong reasons.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

All the Wrong Reasons                                                                                                       ~ Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne

Trouble blew in on a cold dark wind
It came without no warning
And that big ol’ house went up for sale
They were on the road by morning
Oh, the days went slow, into the changing season
Oh, out in the cold, for all the wrong reasons

Well she grew up hard and she grew up fast
In the age of television
And she made a vow to have it all
It became her new religion
Oh, down in her soul, it was an act of treason
Oh, down they go for all the wrong reasons

Where the sky begins the horizon ends
Despite the best intentions
And a big ol’ man goes up for sale
He becomes his own invention
Oh, the days go slow into the changing season
Oh, bought and sold, for all the wrong reasons
Oh, down they go for all the wrong reasons

This song has taken up residence in my brain.  Not just the tune, but the words as well.  Some singer/songwriter poems stand alone.  Bob Dylan’s and Leonard Cohen’s work, for example.  Those guys are true poets in my opinion.  This one by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne needs to be sung.  With the music, the Oh becomes Oh, oh, oh, oh.  But even when I quadruple the word, reading it doesn’t strike the same chord (no pun intended) as when TP sings it.  I want to share it with you to find out if others feel the same way.  Click here to listen.

I’ve tried for days to figure out what I’m supposed to learn here, if anything.  It has caused me to reflect in a way that I wouldn’t have, had my daughter not given me the CD for Christmas.  I wonder how much of what we do when we’re young do we do with intention and logic and an eye to the greater good.  It’s not that I think I had sinister motives ever; it’s just that I wasn’t mature/experienced enough to understand the far-reaching consequences of my decisions.  I think the same is true of most people; and in particular, I give that bit of grace to D, my ex-husband.

The Christmas marathon.

I really just want to be warm yellow light that pours over everyone I love.  ~ Conor Oberst

The marathon is completed for another year and I’m both happy and sad to be home in the quiet again.  I always start Christmas morning with Dtr. #3, then go a couple of miles up the street to #1 and after lunch there, I head up to Chapel Hill to the home of #2.  It is so much fun to see the children’s excitement and feel their energy and love.  I am extraordinarily well-fed on Christmas Day, a lovely meal at each daughter’s home.  It’s now 4:00 pm a day later and I’m still not hungry.  But I’m just tired enough to appreciate the opportunity to read and rest and even to take a nap.

This was a holiday of giving and receiving scarves and sweaters as if we all want to swathe each other in all the good things that will sustain us until next year.  I know that’s how I feel about my loved ones and I sense the same from them.  It’s not just physical warmth but love and kindness and support and a shoulder to lean on when needed.  It’s happiness and joy and freedom from strife.  It’s health and enough wealth to pay the bills.  It’s peace and sharing with the less fortunate.  It’s forgiving and accepting forgiveness.  It’s whatever we need to be happy.

I’m happy to be here, now, the person that I am, with all manner of possibilities stretching out on the road ahead of me.  And I’m happy to have you to help me along.

Star of wonder.

One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego; the self is more distant than any star.  ~  Gilbert K. Chesterton

I would like to write a post soon on the role of ego in my life, so this quote appeals to me.   I can’t get my mind around it right now because I’m very tired–it’s a good sort of tired.

I have a number of these stars on my Christmas tree.  In fact, I have them in a rainbow of colors.  I don’t know why I chose the purple for display on my blog except that I’m rather partial to that hue.  Always have been.  It’s the color of my birthstone, the amethyst.  It’s also, historically, considered a color for royalty, so maybe I’m feeling regal.  More likely I’m trying to feel like a patrician.  That’s also my name you know–Patricia.  I kinda like how all those things fell together for me.  Knowing what my parents were like, I can assure you it was not planned.  Just happenstance.  Or is it?

Wherever you are, I hope you’re having a star-studded, sensational soiree in your patrician purple party pants.  Okay.  That was a stretch.  Hope you’re having fun. 🙂

Christmas weather.

A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.   ~ Steve Martin

Monday, December 19–A beautiful sunny day with a beautiful sunny ten-year-old boy.  F and I went shopping for his Christmas present.  He’s at an age where I need his help choosing what he will enjoy.  We spent quite a long time in the toy store while he made his decision.  Granted, it won’t be a surprise but he will be a happy boy all the same.

After all that hard work we needed a snack.  So we walked down to Brueggers Bagels to get F a late lunch.  This is an unusual Brueggers in that it’s housed in the same space as a Caribou Coffee.  While I was waiting in line for bagels, F informed me that Caribou has the best hot chocolate in the world.  I simply couldn’t resist a line like that so I gave him money and he bought hot chocolate while I took care of the food.

As we sat and ate and sipped, he informed me, “I like spending time with you, Grammy.”  (As if those bright blue eyes hadn’t already melted my heart.)  We try to have these outings ever so often but it’s probably not often enough for either of us.  We talked about why we like being together.  We always have lots to talk about and we feel comfortable in each other’s presence.

Tuesday, December 20–Cloudy all day.  Very dark.  A lights-on-in-the-house day.  I absolutely need company on a day like today so I’m glad that I have a standing date with Daughter #1.  (You may already know that I have three daughters and they are numbered by birth order just for convenience.)  Number One and I meet every Tuesday morning from 10:00 to 12:00 and visit with each other.  We’ve done this for about two or three months now and I have come to look forward to it immensely.  In fact, I guess I’ve learned to depend on it.

We don’t have an agenda, thus there are no expectations other than spending this bit of time together.  I drive to her house one week and the next she drives to mine.  We talk.  It’s amazing to me how helpful it is to say what’s on my mind and then have her say it back to me as she understands it.  It’s good to have another human being tell me what she thinks I just said, especially when that human is as astute and intuitive as she is.  And I guess I’m not surprised that I generally express myself better in writing.  It helps, doesn’t it, to have time to think it through.

I hope we will continue to have these tete a tete for a very long time.  It’s just good to have my daughter all to myself.  We didn’t get to do this when her children were younger.  I wish I had equal time with Numbers Two and Three.  Maybe one day.

Back to the weather report.  Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and yes, Christmas Day–rain, rain and more rain.  I try not to project about things such as the weather but sometimes it helps to realize what I will need to do to scare away doom and gloom.  I will be smiling and spreading sunshine as I finish my shopping, make toffee, and complete my crochet/knit Christmas gifts.  And I will seek smiles and sunshine at the same time.  One grandchild and one daughter at a time will carry me through to the other side and to a Merry Christmas.