Monday, November 29, 2010

good morning

~some halloween pictures, belatedly~
S. was Russell from the movie Up

Sometimes people around here are fragile. And grumpy. And we might jump up and down and yell and make unreasonable demands (not unlike Rumpelstiltskin). And we want to stay in bed all morning because we are so cozy, but it's a school day. One of us in particular tends towards fragility in the mornings (he takes after his mother who has always enjoyed leisurely, relaxed lie-ins): needing dad or mom (usually it's the one who's not available), or needing more cuddles to jolly him into the day. For awhile there, I couldn't get out of bed until we had had our morning snuggle because that would be a short circuit to the Rumpelstiltskin effect.

Russell is a Wilderness Explorer

To prevent this we have found a couple of things that work.

mama was the pirate Jack Sparrow,
from the Pirates of the Caribbean

Getting enough sleep to begin with is key.

on our enchanted forest walk

Sneaking up to crawl into bed with him for a snuggle helps.

the fairies were plentiful

Once snuggled, the magical conversation topic that brings immediate smiles and joy and happy demeanor, is about our favorite small (but not really so small, actually) person, Little T. We might speak about how he is learning to play football, and can say HIKE, and recall a recent video in which he was practicing some moves while wearing a nightie. Or the way his golden curls form a sort of halo around his head. Or how when he kisses (and we re-enact this for the full effect), he puts his lips on you, draws away and THEN the smack-kiss-noise comes, a bit of a delayed reaction. We love this. And just thinking of this boy must stimulate our love endorphins and is a terrific and joyful way to start our morning.
i love these people with leaves in their hair!

However, if we have missed the window somehow, and can't begin the day as above, then we have to do damage control to turn our Rumpelstiltskin back into our lovely boy before he heads off to school. Usually I go back to the wisdom of kindergarten at these moments: taking care to form the space around my boy with love while tending to his physical needs.

This morning that meant pulling up a small chair next to the woodstove so he could sniffle and eat his toast and oatmeal in a cozy place. It meant picking his clothes out (3 longsleeve shirt options, for my picky dresser) and warming them up near the woodstove. Some days it means brushing his hair for him or making a lavender footbath. It helped that I wasn't trying to get out the door to work.
So, just a few ideas for those fragile folks you may encounter in your life... They just need a little more "holding" whether it's physically or psychologically or just in the folds of your mind.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Novembrish Things

A little sewing, for Ashwood's Yuletide Fair and Artisan Marketplace of last weekend, which in turn benefitted the school. It was a tricky business to be given the parts of this advent calendar and told how to put them together, and then do it without worrying too much about realizing someone else's artistic vision. Would my idea of perfect be perfect enough? It turned out the answer was yes, as the two that I made retailed for $42 each!
Remember those little hand warmers, first pictured in last post? I used local yarn, from Good Karma Farm, the rainbow skein with a little of their green variegated alpaca blend at my oh-so-sensitive wrists. I find that I like them at this length quite a bit: knitted just up to my first pinkie knuckle makes them just a bit warmer than others I have made, but still functional for knitting or typing.
note how that central figure is slightly light in value?
amazed that S thought to convey the notion of distance and perspective that way.
note the bulgy muscles on this fellow
(Babe Ruth)

Here is a good un-blogsworthy photo of what our dining room table usually looks like, just to keep it real:
And for those of you who know our house, you may notice a different view out the window, in relation to the table! We have made a major swap in our downstairs layout. This was a brainflash that I had in the midst of feeling really awful, during a recent nasty cold, when I found myself pulling up a duvet in front of the woodstove and lying on the floor of my dining room.

A few days later, when I was turning the corner towards health again, we swapped the dining for the living room. Hello? Duh? I hear you wondering how come it took us eight years to figure this out... The room with the woodstove should also have the couch in it!

The room with the woodstove and the best nighttime lighting should also have comfortable places to sit for reading and knitting! The room with the woodstove is actually quite hot and annoying in the winter to eat supper in, when we have the stove going.
The former living room was really not much more than a glorified hallway, I never sat there, and now we sit by that big window and eat dinner together. And the slightly longer walk from the kitchen? Not a problem.
It feels like a new house.

And while I grew up with a mom who loved moving furniture a few times a year, this move of ours was a big shock for my boys who have had everything pretty much the same since we moved here. Definitely a creative endeavor and an opportunity for some deep cleaning too!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

hello dear November

Well, what am I doing that's creative these days anyway? Are you wondering this? I am.

Today I made a delicious apple crisp to the sound of pelting rain on the windows. It was so grim and cold and dreary though that there was really no way to photograph the process with any loveliness.
Before the rain though, I had been admiring the austere elegance of November. Those clean lines on the sky and the intensity of the starkness, the russet color of the oak leaves (always the last to fall down). The sky is so big all of a sudden and the clouds so swirly and serious.
our beautiful wristers
This day was a walk with a favorite friend and her four-legged rocket of blackness, Dog. The day was absolutely Novembrish, even if it was still technically October. We just caught up, as women do, enjoying the beauty and movement and company.
We kept stopping to admire things like grass hummocks or a single colorful yellow blossom.

It's that time of year when my semester's end is in sight, which is great and also *yikes*. Suddenly things are speedy just when I want them to slow down so I can get snuggled into my nest.
Tell me about how you describe your November.