Friday, December 18, 2009

Random Thoughts on My Holiday Season

The Big Cuter is sitting on Douglas (our couch, for those who've forgotten) with his hands clasped behind his head and his sweatpants down and his t-shirt up just enough for his belly to peek out and beg me to rub it.... only he's a grown man and not my 3 month old bundle of protoplasm so I stifle the urge to rub and instead I type to you.

I remember coming home from college and embracing the sounds and the smells and the routine rhythms of the life I'd left (happily) behind but which still cosseted me as I walked in the front door. There was hostility and uncertainty and lots and lots of yelling or quiet steaming but it was home and it felt right. Not necessarily wonderful but right nonetheless.

And tonight I look over and see my husband and my son in the exact same position on the couch, yelling at the exact same time as the Colt's run the length of the field for a touchdown, wearing the same outfit and examining each corn chip in exactly the same manner. And it's not only right, it's wonderful, too.
Proving once again that just because things are fine when I wake up there is no guarantee that they'll stay that way, Kris from the pod-castle caught me on my cell in the parking lot of the post office to tell me that she'd found G'ma on the floor beside her couch when she went in to dispense the mid- afternoon meds. That was the reason the phone had gone unanswered when I'd called 20 minutes before to see if she was awake and wanted a visitor. She rolled over to pick up the receiver and became tangled in her Horace Mann School blanket and the phone was knocked off the stand and she was down.

No one feels guilty. No one is worried. There are no bumps or bruises and her blood pressure was a bit elevated but she rolled off the couch for crying out loud so what should we expect? Foregoing the APC, I drove to the pod-castle and found G'ma watching Law and Order, having no memory of the event at all.

Whenever I wonder whether Assisted Living was the right choice, things like this happen. I mean, really --- the woman was lying on the couch and she managed to fall down. Living alone is just not an option.
My hydrangea is still blooming in its container under the portico (yes, a portico.... this house has lots of first-time-for-me features). I've added 3 white and 3 blood-red petunias to the backyard containers, where the volunteer mesquite trees are taking root quite nicely. The vinca, an invasive plant that's just fine in a pot but runs rampant in a flower bed, is still green and healthy. One hard freeze and it will turn brown and mushy and have to be removed for aesthetic and olfactory reasons. But, for now, I'm pretty happy.
One year I am going to plant the paperwhite and amaryllis bulbs the day I buy them in October so that they will be in bloom for the holidays. As it stands right now, though, I will, once again, have my blossoms for Valentines Day instead. On the bright side, I found the bulbs I'd put in storage in the garage last March, and they are coming up nicely right along side the ones I bought this year. Every year I plan to save the bulbs and replant them; this is the first time I've ever actually done it.

Is it possible that I am actually learning and growing and changing my behavior? One can only hope.
Cards with pictures and status updates are filling the mailbox. Marriages and college acceptances and studies in China and 50K endurance challenges are making me smile.

I really do love this time of year.


  1. Hello Ashley, You tall blonde? Glad to find you roaming the airport...Love your stories...thanks for the connection. -- MeMO

  2. Glad you kept the business card, MeMO! You are a fabulous hostess for our little airport in the desert.... with free WiFi no less :-)

  3. Love your blog and stories.
    Happy holidays.

  4. Happy Holidays to you, too, Mary. Love your stories right back!\


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