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Archive for December, 2007

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It’s a cozy New Year’s eve and, for the moment, I’m hunkered down with my new camera, the software that came with it and my iBook. Above is my first effort with a RAW file photo…this could mean the end of life as I’ve known it! There’s soooooo much to learn and I guess my husband will soon be a Canon widower.

Come to think about it, maybe he got the camera to appease me–so I won’t notice his absence. Hmmm. Currently, he is President of the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation, Vice President-Elect of the NYS AFCC and sits on several other boards and multiple committees. My complaint has been…”I NEVER SEE YOU.” Yup…this is one smart husband!

I love New Year’s Eve. It’s a time for reflection. I love to sit in front of the fire and dream about what will be in the coming year. Occasionally, we spend the evening with friends. The last time we did that, we didn’t get home until 5 am.

As this year comes to a close, I am filled with gratitude for all of the abundance that I enjoy. I thank each one of you for visiting my blog and for encouraging me to continue. May you enjoy a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!

CHEERS!!

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Today is my Mom’s birthday. She would have been 84.

This morning Dad calls…he sounds chipper and deceptively sharp. Asks how I am and when we will get together again. I remind him that we were together for Christmas and that we were together in Connecticut at my brother’s house on the day after Christmas. “Oh, yes,” he says, “I remember now.” I’m pretty sure that he really doesn’t.

Before I know it, he’s asking me where I am; where my house is; if he’s ever been there. He calls back several times and when I answer, he says, “Lynnie, dear?” I say, “No, Dad, it’s me…Sandy.”

Lately he’s been leaving messages. Apologizing for whatever it is that he’s done and begging to continue our love affair. He forgets that Mom has been dead for sixteen years now. I realize that he looks at me and he sees her. It must be very disorienting for him–it certainly is for me!

I really wonder what his inner world is all about. His short term memory is totally shot and his long term memory is beginning to go. He’s not sure why he is where he is–if he’s with us, he’s for sure that he will be in trouble if he doesn’t get back to the nursing home. If he’s in his room, he thinks he should be going back to North Carolina or Pennsylvania or Connecticut or Long Island.

I am continuously reminding myself not to take it personally and not to get defensive when he doesn’t remember that I’ve been there to visit. I somehow think that it will make a difference–I guess it does make a difference in the moment. When the moment’s gone, he’s lonely, forgetful, disoriented, afraid.

I think he knows it’s her birthday. I think somewhere in his body-mind, this day is sacred and there’s something that he wants to say and do…a gift he wants to give. It won’t come into his mind in an orderly way; in a way that it makes sense. All he knows is that something is missing…something he loves; something he needs; something familiar; something that brings wholeness; that sharpens his focus. He reaches out and I don’t really know how to reach back.

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It’s 3:27 when the light begins to change. I’m still doing laundry and the final round of putting the house back in order…what am I saying? There is never a “final” round. My friend Edda used to say, “when the kids are gone and the dogs are dead.” I haven’t found this to be true…

The Christmas returns are packed and piled; the leftovers are dwindling. When the alarm went off at 6:45, I was sorely tempted to stay in bed. Ordinarily, this is not a conversation that I have with myself…it’s Saturday morning and off to yoga class I go…neither snow, nor sleet, nor rain, nor heat can deter me. This morning’s practice reminds me that I pay a price when I don’t unroll my mat.

At 3:27, I hurry to gather up my camera and get outdoors. It’s a beautiful day–warm, sunny. Just a matter of time before the next storm arrives. By the time I get to the River, the light is dwindling. Slabs of ice pave the inlet. The wind kicks up–it’s colder than I thought.

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WHITE EYES

In winter
all the singing is in
the tops of the trees
where the wind-bird
with its white eyes
shoves and pushes
among the branches.
Like any of us
he wants to go to sleep,
but he’s restless—
he has an idea,
and slowly it unfolds
from under his beating wings
as long as he stays awake
But his big, round music, after all,
is too breathy to last.
So, it’s over.
In the pine-crown
he makes his nest,
he’s done all he can.
I don’t know the name of this bird,
I only imagine his glittering beak
tucked in a white wing
while the clouds—
which he has summoned
from the north—
which he has taught
to be mild, and silent—
thicken, and begin to fall
into the world below
like stars, or the feathers
of some unimaginable bird
that loves us,
that is asleep now, and silent—
that has turned itself
into snow.

– MARY OLIVER –

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Warm air today…51 degrees. I take a quick walk between clients. Route 218 is closed to traffic…quiet. There are patches of ice; water is dripping and running…spring-like. The sun and air refresh–I am glad to be outside.
The house is empty again; kids and dogs departed; refrigerator filled with left-overs; a few unopened packages under the tree, so Christmas is still a work in progress. I’ve grown so accustomed to the quiet times that I am hard pressed to imagine how we all fit under one roof back in the day…meals for 7 with lots of coming and going…this one to dance class; that one to work…piano lessons, sleep-overs, snow days and two hour delays.

Holidays bring glimpses of deja vue. I loved my life then and I love it now…grateful today for the moss, the snow, the ice, the sun, the clouds, the deep silence.

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Of course with a baby on the way–a baby whose gender remains unknown–there is much conjecture about whether it will be a boy or a girl. There are all of the usual pronouncements…”you’re carrying in front, it’s a boy” and “you didn’t have morning sickness, it’s a boy” and…”it’s a boy” and “it’s for sure a boy…”

Well, I carried in front and never barfed (either time) and had two wonderful, amazing girls. Sisters…

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Sara..
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and Grace…
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Amazing!!
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Do you think it MIGHT be a girl?? I really don’t know–and, well, I will be totally delighted no matter what. I just think we MIGHT be, um, FAIR AND BALANCED??

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“Photo lesson…”

So, okay…it’s been awhile since I’ve tended to my blog. Such a wonderful time with family…too short! I had a lesson on my new camera and voila…here are a few of the results:

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This is Sara and Grace with Gatsby….

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And with Grampie…

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Dinner with at my brother’s house…

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This is Dave, known to some as “Unkie”…

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And nephew Keith…

Stay tuned…

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Christmas Day 2007…dinner for 13 (not including two dogs)…a 20 pound bird…Brett, Susan, Elijah, Blake and Ethan didn’t make it…down for the count with an upper respiratory infection.

This is Sara and Gatsby–possibly the best behaved pooch on the planet. A welcome visitor. More pictures will soon follow because my wonderful husband bought me a Canon 40D digital camera for Christmas…I am still speechless. This may be my last Power Shot photo. We’ll see.

Last night we read The NIght Before Christmas aloud…as it says,

HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!!!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS

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