silly dog

“People shouldn't be embarrassed just because they get caught acting a little silly.”
― Charles Schulz

the week is full of beautiful sunshine, frost and Christmas.
for the first time in years, i feel the urge to celebrate the
whole of the season, doing something Christmas-like each day.
for years my job was to create Christmas, but this year
i set out to do the things that make the season
special for me:
he and i go to the Botanical Gardens to see the lights
i bake new cookies that sound good to me
we go to dinner with close friends
i listen to cheesy Christmas music on Spotify (and sing)
i watch Elf for the the umpteenth time
i cut back on the decorations in favor of just sitting in front of the tree,
and i think hard about where i might make donations that really count.

i am working on teaching the dog how to catch a Frisbee,
which might work out better if i could throw it right, but we
still enjoy the process. one afternoon we are out practicing and he losses
interest and wanders off, only to return with what i think is some kind of rope
in his mouth. upon further inspection i come to the conclusion it is
simply the long tail of a rat, a real, once-alive rat. i reach into my pocket
and offer him a treat for the exchange, and grab it with a poo bag.
i should write a book titled, Things I Have Pulled from Baker’s Mouth.

at seven months he is about the same height that Basil was,
but longer. he is lanky and deer like as he prances and leaps,
with such grace, around the yard. he has a few bad habits, that are my fault
because i could not resist his puppy face, but we are working on them
now and he is learning. he makes us laugh and keeps us from reading
or watching TV all day long!

one night one of the boys call to tell me he and his brother (and their wives) have planned Christmas this year,
all on their own. i am dumfounded and ecstatic as he fills me in on the details. it feels so good to let it go,
to ask what i can bring or do, and not have to plan it all. i wonder why as mothers, we often feel
we have to keep up with old traditions. the smart thing is to let them evolve and grow, like our families.
the important thing is to take all the goodness in and open our hearts to every possibility.

“...freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin - inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night...”
― John Geddes, A Familiar Rain

have a wonderful week,
Xo. Cathy

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mindscape

“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”
― Albert Camus

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The first days of December are full of sunshine, blue sky and frosty mornings. I wash the bird-feeders, cleaning them of the wet leftover autumn seeds, getting them ready for winter gatherings. I stand one day and watch the geese fly overhead as they leave the ponds behind our home, for the season. It seems nature knows what to do during these winter months, and while things might appear dead, it is all part of the renewal plan for next spring, already in the works.

I observe the landscape of the world around me as it changes and am spellbound by all her beauty. I take nothing for granted. I pull over for sunsets, walk with my camera in the early morning, and notice shadows dancing through light. I pay attention.

One morning, while still in bed, I consider the landscape of my mind; the jagged mountains of what I think and feel. I see how I have left much of it to evolve on its own, often believing I have little or no controle over the “weather” inside my head. It does not need to be this way and I do not have to suffer. The decisions I make are my own and I am in charge of my thoughts. So much of my spirit, my mood, and my emotions are a products of how I perceive events, and how I might transform and judge them within my own “mindscape”. I am learning to ask myself ~ Is this really true?

While the frost will weaken the leaves allowing them to flow back into the earth, it first illuminates and sharpens every ornate detail. I practice illuminating the authenticity of my mindscape each day now. Paying closer attention to how I reflect upon this world and tend to the energy within it. I find I am becoming more aware of honoring what I truly love and saying no to what does not nourish me.

have a beautiful weekend,
Xo. Cathy

hello december

“I prefer winter and Fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape—the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.”
—Andrew Wyeth

chai tea, candlelight, a new wool hat, purple snow boots, filling the vases with holly, big pots of soup, soft throws in every room, afternoon naps, paying attention . . .

happy sunday,

Xo. Cathy