Tuesday, January 6, 2015


January 1933
Well, we had a great Christmas, and it helps to pass the winter.
Ina Dobson

January 1, 1938
I’ve dismantled the tree . . . and feel like I can settle down to just living again and enjoying my gifts and memories of a very happy Christmas. . . Ina Dobson

It seems to me that we spend December in anticipation of Christmas -- perhaps allowing ourselves to enjoy it for a week or so before New Year’s -- but then we put it all away. Moving away from Christmas and into the New Year, some of us face the doldrums. Oh yes, we have to take the tree down, put away the decorations, and return to normal, but do we have to put away everything that might make the drab winter months more bearable? We even “put away” winter songs and pictures of pristine snowy scenes, and really – Christmas sits at the official beginning of winter rather than the end. We have weeks to go before the days are appreciably longer.

The New Year forces us to face our issues. Some relate to business and income tax and thus stand out as “musts.” Others relate to the tradition of “resolutions” and have to do with self-improvement – admirable goals for the individual.

“Beautifully Organized,” declares the cover of the January Better Homes and Gardens. I wonder who they’re talking about. “Make 2015 the year you finally get organized (for real this time),” says bhg.com. And now I’m slightly irked. I will never be organized “for real” until I lose interest in this world. They might just as well tell me to “drop weight for good.”

Last week I began “spring housecleaning,” starting with the pantry floor. You may think I’m ahead of the game, but actually, I’m woefully behind. I told myself I had to make a start, and the start didn’t have to be the whole pantry – just the floor. And so I did the floor, and when the spirit moves me, I’ll do the first shelf.

Already scattering my fire, as it were, I took a break from the pantry and moved to the sewing room where things are in utter disarray. As I sewed prior to Christmas, so many things came out – needles, threads, ribbons, yarns, patterns, fabrics – and very little went back into hiding. The little sewing room is overwhelmed, and so am I. Those things came out one-by-one, and now I must put them away one-by-one. The hardest decisions relate to storing works in progress – from mending to doll clothes to quilts.

Well, it’s the winter, you know, and not much is happening. KW


Hallie said...

Last night on my run I was surprised to see how many houses still have their Christmas lights up. I'm not sure when ettiquette says they are supposed to come down, but it's nice that Seattlites are hanging on!

Kathy said...

Some people continue to turn on their lights through Epiphany, the festival commemorating the visit of the Magi, which coincides with the Twelve Days of Christmas, I believe. My parents never spoke of Epiphany, and New Year's Eve was the last time the lights were turned on. Many people do that.

Then there's our neighbor -- he leaves them up through Valentine's Day, or maybe even Easter.

I will say, though, that I didn't think it was exactly a bright Christmas this year. Maybe I just didn't get to the right places, but here in my neighborhood, I thought it was a little dark.

Chris said...

Well we all know that here at the resort the lights stay on a looonng time. And the rest of the stuff stays up, too. :-)