hallelujah

I think that life is a friggin’ magic carpet ride - it’s amazing. Everything about life is mysterious and beautiful and touching and tragic and lovely and mystical.
— Elizabeth Lesser
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We spend the weekend with the kids up north. We meet the newlyweds for breakfast, and later have some wine and homemade soup with the homesteaders. We make plans for the holidays in their homes which actually feels pretty wonderful. Letting the holidays go is a welcome step for me. I figure they all need the practice, and the opportunity to build their own traditions, and for right now I am so thankful they are including us. But I also understand that might not always be the case. So I am going to embrace it and enjoy every moment. 

Make your holidays a conscious season.” 
― Sunday Adelaja

There is some talk, between me and him about getting a fake tree, but both of us agree we are not ready for that step. So we will head out with Basil one day soon, and cut a small one down to bring home to light our living room with joy, knowing there is a very good chance we will be the only ones who see it. I will hand over, yet one more box of childhood ornaments, to decorate another tree and fill ours with what is left. There are plenty I tell myself, and there are. 

...freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin - inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night...
— John Geddes

I come home with over 100 photos of the chickens. They follow me around the yard like puppies, getting under my feet, so very curious about what I am up to.  When I get down to their level to snap a photo, they try and peck at my camera lens. They nap and scratch and ruffle their feathers as they preen themselves. They make me laugh. I let them out both mornings we are there, when Basil and I return for our morning walk, and bring in warm eggs. 

What I have learned from these chickens: 

it's best to just ruffle up and let it go
get outside every day no matter what the weather
stretch your wings, even if you can't fly far or very high
nature is way ahead of humans in most departments
chickens are more entertaining than anything on TV
you don't need water to take a good bath
don't be afraid to let your voice be heard
flock together and take care of each other
be curious and don't peck the hand that feeds you

Everyone should be born into this world happy
and loving everything.
But in truth it rarely works that way.
For myself, I have spent my life clamoring toward it.
Halleluiah, anyway that I’m not where I started!
And have you too been trudging like that, sometimes
almost forgetting how wondrous the world is
and how miraculously kind some people can be?
And have you decided that probably nothing important
is ever easy?
Not, say, for the first sixty years.
Halleluiah, I’m sixty now, and even a little more,
and some days I feel I have wings.
— Mary Oliver

have a beautiful week. . .