Tis the Season

Saturday, November 28, 2009
Tis the season for sleeping schedules to fall out of wack, writing schedules to become mere memories and eating habits to completely disintegrate. I woke up at quarter to five this morning and lay in bed thinking I would fall asleep again but instead mulling over interview questions for the articles I’m writing, the plot of the short story I started yesterday, and wondering whether or not it was too early to get up. At long last, I gave in and went downstairs to start the coffee. Since the holidays have already begun to monkey with my writing schedule (neither yesterday nor the day before qualified as “writing days”) I have plenty to do to stay on track before this month quickly draws to a close.

Although it seems early for the holidays to be upon us, they most certainly are. I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. We had a rip-roaring community dinner, shattering attendance records and running out of turkey. Luckily, the turkey shortage only really affected the volunteers who had visions of leftover turkey sandwiches the next day. Most of us never did sit down to eat during the dinner; we were too busy refilling serving bowls and restocking the pie table. As my mother noted, we either need to stop promoting the dinner so ferociously or find a larger venue.

While my cynical side generally serves as my guiding light, that doesn’t mean I don’t recognize all the things in my life to be thankful for: friends, family, love, employment, travel, reasons to write, a teeny home office, good books to read, non-modem internet, plenty of food in the fridge.

My business cards, stating “freelance writer,” arrived in the mail yesterday. They’re so pretty and though I feel a little silly for having them (only 250 and they were free besides the shipping and handling), I also realize that if I don’t take myself seriously, there’s really no reason why I should expect anyone else to do so either. Besides, yesterday I received two more article assignments, due three days after my latest article assignment. It may be time to relearn the lessons of time management.

Although I’m sure we’d find some place for Mary and the Christ Child if they came knocking, there’s no room in the Shack for a Christmas tree, but we still managed to string up a fair amount of Christmas decorations. A teeny tree, only about a foot high, is sitting on top of the shelf that holds everything from books to bullets and the curtain rods on the two windows facing the hill are wrapped with garland and hung with ornaments. Although many of my decorations are meaningless and thus should be discarded before they get put away in January, I love all the memories associated with so many of them. La Befana , the Italian Christmas witch I bought in Rome, hangs in the kitchen beside the multi-colored snowflakes from the V&A in London. Among the ornaments hanging on the other window are the Hallmark ornaments my gramma has given me over the years, a little teddy bear Harrods’ doorman, and many memories of Christmas pageants and plays participating in years past.

We’re overcoming Thursday’s turkey deficiency with a family dinner in town tonight. I need to make triple ginger cookies, a new recipe, to bring with us. I also could stand to get some felting started, along with other laundry, to get me one step closer to completing the Christmas presents. I finally picked up Christmas cards yesterday, which brings about the wild goose chase for everyone’s correct address.

The coyotes are howling somewhere not to far away and the sun is rising over what could be the season’s first completely ice covered lake. Time to move on to the day’s next project.

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