Wednesday, December 21, 2011

December Daily Continues...

Monday, December 21, or "All My Bells Are Ringing":  I finally relax into my break, having slept for much of the weekend.  Z comes home from a weekend at her grandma's house, bearing container after container of Christmas cookies.   Sugarsugarsugarsugarsugar.

Speaking of sugar, my frosting-smeared daughter appears on a layout in this week's Garden at Two Peas in a Bucket:

I've had that BasicGrey blossom for a while now, and I wasn't sure where or how to use it until I started this page.  It makes a bold and playful statement -- plus, I love the color.

Tuesday, December 22, or "Silent Night":  This time of year can be hard as we look back and think about loved ones that we have lost. My grandmother has been feeling depressed.  My grandfather died almost two decades ago, but my grandmother often experiences his loss as if it is still fresh, especially at this time of year, since he passed away a few days after Christmas.  Even after years of grieving, she has not really accepted the loss.

Tonight we attend the memorial service of Uncle Ben, who is not really my uncle, but he is still family, though marriage.  He died on Thanksgiving, and though he had been battling cancer since 2009, his death was still quite sudden.  My grandmother attends as well, and I worry about the impact that this will have on her already fragile emotions.

The service is strangely comforting and hopeful, however, not at all like the services I am used to attending, which are gloomy and sometimes -- I don't know a better word for it -- scary.  This is a Buddhist service, and throughout the ceremony, we are reminded that wisdom and compassion are essential to life and to the nature of things, and that Ben is now part of that wisdom and compassion.  The western concept of "resting in peace" does not apply here, we are told; instead, he is very much part of an active, lively force.  His death is a reminder to us not to hang on to grief, but rather, to embrace life even more fully.

I think of Uncle Ben and I realize that this is what I knew of him: he was a good person.  I want to be remembered that way as well.  That is certainly something worthwhile to work toward -- embracing the love in my life and putting out even more into the universe.

Wednesday, December 23, or "My Christmas List":  Z and I had promised Rob that after taking a few days off just to relax, we would turn our attention to some much-needed housecleaning.   Thus, when I open my eyes and think, "Gosh, it's Wednesday," my thoughts soon morph to "Grrr, it's Wednesday."  Time to clean.  Sort of.  We get distracted too easily, and end up -- I can't even remember how, really -- reenacting Monty Python and the Holy Grail with the dog:

In any case, we make our way through much of our cleaning "to do" list.  I even manage to straighten my scrap desk a little: 
I've taken to storing my mists in old cake pans.  Cute and functional: my kind of storage. 

After cleaning, Z and I head to the store to pick up ingredients for chicken pot pie and beef brisket (perfect chilly weather food), and now that I've made my way through the cleaning list and the grocery list, it's time to attend to my own Christmas list.  At the top?  A Cameo!  Yep, I just got word today that they were back in stock at Two Peas, and so I quickly added one to my cart.  My husband is SO sweet for getting it for me for Christmas, even though I still need to inform him that he's done so.  

We also put up Christmas lights today -- and by "we," I mean "he," my awesometastic husband.  
The lights are blue.  I LOVE blue Christmas lights.  I wanted icicles, but they were too hard to find.  Now we are no longer the only house on the street without lights!  I felt like we were the Kranks for a few weeks there. 

On the agenda for tomorrow?  Finally decorating the tree! 

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