Monday, December 21, 2015

Feels Like Sunday, but Isn't

It was another "necky" day, but I managed to keep moving till midafternoon, when I took a pill and lay down for an hour or so. Even that didn't fix me up, but by evening I was back to normal.

The sky was blue, too, so I went out and filled the birdfeeders before going for a good walk. It had snowed lightly in the morning, and huge flakes sparkled on top of the fresh snow. Just gorgeous. And on the road where there are trees alongside, snowflakes drifted oh so gently from branch to branch to branch. It was so beautiful I didn't want to come back in, but before walking two miles I was starting to feel tired and thought it would be smarter to turn around and come home.

Woke up with the bullshit again this morning and, before doing some yoga and pouring coffee, did some reading and found this wise little tidbit in the book I'm reading:

We Greeks get married in circles, to impress upon ourselves the essential matrimonial facts: that to be happy you have to find variety in repetition; that to go forward you have to come back to where you began. — Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides

I made sure not to run out of reading material for the next two weeks. This sight is exciting to me:

So. It's Monday. I should start a batch of bread and make six loaves every day till Thursday. I can't buy clothing for Everett for Christmas because he's too fussy and prefers to buy his own. Christmas — bah, humbug, he says — and asks me not to give him any gifts at all. I can't do that. No one should wake up Christmas morning and have not even one gift to open; I've been there more than once. I know that is the case for many people; among them, those who don't have mothers. How do I respect his stated wish while still respecting my desire to give? Why, a batch of bread, of course; that, he welcomes at any time and for any reason.

Also, his dad is coming to spend Christmas with the boys. I thought I'd bake a batch for Gord to take home, too, since he always raves about it and appreciates it so much. It's probably the one thing he misses about living with me. And I could bake a batch for my brother Cameron, who also likes good homemade bread; Gord could deliver it when he gets back to St. Albert, for the two of them live in the same building. Will I manage to live up to my best intentions? Right now the kitchen is spikkety-span, and the thought of messing it up with baking is quite unpleasant. Maybe I'll give myself a break; they can all live without homemade bread.

This morning I tackled the second bookshelf and stacked up another 23 books to move out of my domain.  Yesterday I plunked the first box of them onto the back seat of my car, Little Green. It's tough! The tiny library in town is always having book sales to make space for newer books, so it won't want them I'm sure. They end up being recycled — that is, the pages torn from their covers, which is done right in Wadena.  The thought of it turns my stomach, as it does to anyone who loves books. Surely someone would want them! Could use them! We need one of those little book-giving mailboxes somewhere. We need a secondhand bookstore! Hm ... maybe I could just haul them all out to my camper till someone needs one. I mean, there are so many titles of interest ... yeah I know, maybe just to me. But listen:

1. Teaching Arithmetic for Teachers in Training (1945). It was one of Mom's books, I see from her name written on the flyleaf. Sure it teaches the "old" math, but wouldn't that be helpful for anyone tutoring someone in math now, anyway? Julie? Or maybe the local elementary school would find it useful to try a different approach with kids who are struggling?
2. Spanish for Dummies. Yeah. I didn't get far with that. Someday...I always thought.
3 and 4. There is Nothing Wrong with You, and The Key and the Name of the Key is Willingness, by Cheri Huber.
5. The Invisible Partners, by John A. Sanford.
6. The Dance of Anger, by Harriet, Goldhor Lerner.
... and on it goes.
Actually I think I'm going to read through #4 again.
These are all books I think I'll read again one day or give them to someone who might benefit from them ... but it hasn't happened in at least 15 years and probably never will. So ... out they must go. Even The Indian Tipi is already in Little Green. I got as far as sourcing canvas to build one, once, 30 years ago. It's never going to happen. See what I mean?


  1. Every year one of our kids will "cancel Christmas". Every year I ignore them and do whatever I want, which is to give them gifts. All that work bringing them up, I have earned the right to un-cancel Christmas!

    I admire your determination! We have four seven foot high bookcases full of books, two rows deep on each shelf. I can't part with any of them! Old friends. I have read some of them again, and amazingly, having waited more than 30 years to do so, they seem fresh to me. I loved them the first time, and I love them the second time (or third , or fourth...)

    I have some text books that I am willing to part with though, actually hundreds of them. That is on my list, out with the text books which I will never read again... and three filing cabinets full of my academic research and publications that no one on earth cares about anymore.

    1. Everett is 23 and occasionally I still say, "Because I"m your mother, that's why!"

      I have managed to set aside some 50 books while only keeping two to look through again, and one or two my nieces might find of interest. Everything's so easily available online now, or from the library, that if ever I want them again I know I can get them without much delay. Still, it's hard to part with them. Old friends, indeed.

    2. Got boxes and cabinets of old books here that I have never read and likely never will. But I'm keeping them, just in case. I've got space and the next generation might have less trouble disposing of them than I will.

    3. Books don't need to be read to be worth keeping, do they? I'm just in a paring-down phase, and trying to let go of the past.

    4. Every time I've moved, which has been numerous times, I haul a box or two of books off to a 2nd hand store but it's like twisting my arm off and it takes me forever to decide what will go and what will move with me.

    5. Books are like pets. We're supposed to provide "forever" homes! Eh?

  2. I know, I often wake up thinking of my mum and granny and I find the grief overwhelming and at other times joy that they'd been in my life. We don't "do" Christmas and haven't for years but we exchange some small gifts on Solstice. Christmas can be such a racket. Simple is best.

    You sound better.

    And books, so very glad we now have our local library and another one 50k away and Books By Mail, how I love that!


    1. "and at other times joy that they'd been in my life."

      I'll remind myself of this; maybe it will help.

  3. I hope you are feeling better. You reminded me that I need to purge some of my books. Best wishes for a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


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