26 February 2012

looking up, looking within

in the evening sky tonight, planet jupiter, the waxing crescent moon, and planet venus. i stayed in all day today, kept quiet, but happened to glance this scene out my window at twilight, and ran to a clearing so i could better see. historically, this is a reflective day for me, an anniversary of a life event that has gotten so much better with time, but never really leaves entirely. i am glad of the fact that this celestial event made a pensive day so spectacular, if only for a little while.

25 February 2012

snow in the morning

now i remember what winter's all about. lovely morning outside my window - bright and white. but friends from areas south and west of here tell me strong winds are headed this way so i need to get out before they begin. now, where did i put those boots...?

24 February 2012

snow at dusk

after waiting for it all day, snow started falling gently, right at dusk. for the most part, it's been a snowless winter this year and i've liked it - no boots, no hats, no snowy roads or walkways to negotiate. there's been the tiniest bit of snow on the ground, just enough to make it the landscape look white and like it's february. but it hasn't even felt that way with warm temperatures and fleece jackets instead of wool coats. i can't help but wonder if all that may change now.

23 February 2012


time for a new check register, don't you think?
oh yeah.

21 February 2012

shrove tuesday

pancakes for shrove tuesday dinner. overindulgence, i suppose, 
but i was neither in the mood nor in the area for mardi gras.

17 February 2012

distant cousin

quite late last night, i received word that an older cousin had died suddenly, and it's been heavy on my mind since. she grew up in the navy so her family moved around a lot, and i think i probably saw her only three times in my entire life, all when we were both children. she spent her whole adult life overseas, with no brothers, no sisters and, as her parents died, she stayed in the same community. it gives me comfort to know that she was important to the people there and that they loved and cared for her. once again, i find myself thanking facebook for bringing a long lost relation, albiet a virtual one, back into my world. we had over four years of contact - about family, our fathers and grandparents, religion, the Red Sox, flash mobs, culture, music, and the contents of this blog. i will greatly miss that.

here's my cousin, riding on a camel. in truth, it sounds like she lead a much simpler life - friends, church, God, trips, helping others - so i always got a real kick out of this picture. when i think of her, i hope to remember her this way - a sweet, spirited woman, grinning broadly from atop a camel. r.i.p. joanna.

14 February 2012


flowers, a card, some heart cookies, a drawing...all anticipated and all quite lovely. a handmade heart sentiment, left as a surprise from a youngster, one that i had not thought i was reaching - such a wonderful gift. perhaps i'm reading more into it than was intended, but tonight i still smile every time it catches my eye.

12 February 2012

february 12 of 12: a few of my favorite things

today dawned bright, sunny, and bitterly cold. my planned 12 of 12 for the month involved venturing out-of-doors, and i early on decided not to. in an effort to salvage the project, i started to showcase some of the everyday items in the house that give me small joys. i am by no means a "material girl" - but these things, i just love.

this cabinet. i bought it on impulse for $100 that i didn't have many, many years ago. i painted it this odd color because i just liked the teal, then built the room around it. some might think it's a tad shabby, but every time i polish it or put something inside, i'm glad all over again that i bought it.

these candles. it's all i burn these days. hand-made soy, with amazing combinations of scents. i allow myself only one of these candles a month. and when it's gone, it's gone.

pottery. crocks and jars, vases and plates. none of them particularly of any value, many of them chipped, but all simple, utilitarian, and i love using them. this is one of the only pieces i have with an intact cover!

here's my vase of choice, a reproduction redware three-handled cup from a plimoth plantation in massachusetts, given to me by a friend. twice, a handle has broken off and twice, it's been repaired. i can't imagine why this would need three handles - i think that's part of the charm.

this is the measuring cup i've had all my adult baking life. it works well to dip into dry ingredients, it levels right at the one cup mark, and the 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 markings are easy to see inside and out. recently, i found another almost identical measure in a consignment shop. now i have one for dry ingredients, one for wet. i'm a happy baker!

my favorite room in the house, probably because it's the one that stays the cleanest. it was the girl's when she was small and now serves as a guest room. i love this bed, one that i bought covered with horrid paint and stripped to find beautiful walnut with inlays. if i leave the door to this room open, i can see into it as i go through the living room. i like that.

i have lots of needlework around the place but this is one of my favorites. the girl made it for me one year for christmas. i like it so much, i just never take it down! by the way, my other favorite is here

this is far from my most intricate quilt but it's the one i like the best. i like the colors and the prints and the design. it hangs on my wall, in close proximity to that cabinet above, because in the light of that room, the greens/teals look like the same color, thank goodness! 

ranunculus, my new favorite winter flower. i'm always happy when i stop for friday flowers and these beauties are in the cooler. they last and last and those petals circle from the outside in and look like they never end.

my favorite socks. comfy. cozy. soft. warm. great colors. i have about seven pair of these, each in a different color yarn. i wear them all winter long, even around the house with birkenstocks. yes, i do.

for a grown woman, i have way too many teddy bears. this one's my favorite. it was my mother's, it came from harrod's in london, and she used to keep it on her bed. after she died, i bought it sweaters so the little girl could dress it up for holidays. yes, i did.

my favorite technology. it reads the conditions right outside the door. you know what a weather junkie i am. i love that these readings come from my own yard. and that it shows the phase of the moon.

i am so late with this month's 12 of 12 and only finish it because i had taken all the pictures. someone once told me that this would happen, that i'd get too busy to post within an acceptable period of time. silly me -  i didn't believe him. guess he was right after all. 

08 February 2012

sitting out

a late night tonight at work and i arrived home well after dark. the evening was starlit and cold, the still, brisk sort of cold that permeates lungs, clears the mind, and eases the soul. so instead of making dinner, instead of checking email and voicemail, instead of starting homework or housework or coursework, i stayed outside. i sat outside, in the night. and for a good long time.

06 February 2012

better late than never

there must be something truly magical about this spot by the window. it's the very same place where my cactus bloomed last year. and now look! my poinsettia from december 2010 is not only still alive (which in itself is nothing short of amazing), but now it's turning it's lovely flowery shade of pink - and all by itself. never has this happened to me and i don't even care that it's all taking place two months too late. i'll take it when i can get it!

02 February 2012


if candlemas day is clear and bright
winter will have another bite.
if candlemas day brings cloud and rain,
winter is gone and will not come again.

hoping the groundhog does not see his shadow.

01 February 2012

evening light

looking out the window, february 1st, 5:18 in the evening. and even though it's dark enough for the solar lights to come on, it's light enough to still see outside.