Friday, January 10, 2014


Sarah and I have spent the last couple days taking a vacation from our vacation.  We jumped back into our school routine on Monday, because that was when school started back up, but we really weren't ready.  Really, really weren't ready.  So yesterday and today we just let go of any goals, any good habits, any expectations beyond just letting ourselves rest.  And oh what a relief that's been.  Comfy clothes, blankets, some reading, some silly TV shows, some quiet talking.  Precisely what we needed.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Thank you, Shirley, for starting me back down this road!

Ode To Wine

Day-colored wine,
night-colored wine,
wine with purple feet
or wine with topaz blood,
starry child
of earth,
wine, smooth
as a golden sword,
as lascivious velvet,
wine, spiral-seashelled
and full of wonder,
never has one goblet contained you,
one song, one man,
you are choral, gregarious,
at the least, you must be shared.
At times
you feed on mortal
your wave carries us
from tomb to tomb,
stonecutter of icy sepulchers,
and we weep
transitory tears;
spring dress
is different,
blood rises through the shoots,
wind incites the day,
nothing is left
of your immutable soul.
stirs the spring, happiness
bursts through the earth like a plant,
walls crumble,
and rocky cliffs,
chasms close,
as song is born.
A jug of wine, and thou beside me
in the wilderness,
sang the ancient poet.
Let the wine pitcher
add to the kiss of love its own.

My darling, suddenly
the line of your hip
becomes the brimming curve
of the wine goblet,
your breast is the grape cluster,
your nipples are the grapes,
the gleam of spirits lights your hair,
and your navel is a chaste seal
stamped on the vessel of your belly,
your love an inexhaustible
cascade of wine,
light that illuminates my senses,
the earthly splendor of life.

But you are more than love,
the fiery kiss,
the heat of fire,
more than the wine of life;
you are
the community of man,
chorus of discipline,
abundance of flowers.
I like on the table,
when we're speaking,
the light of a bottle
of intelligent wine.
Drink it,
and remember in every
drop of gold,
in every topaz glass,
in every purple ladle,
that autumn labored
to fill the vessel with wine;
and in the ritual of his office,
let the simple man remember
to think of the soil and of his duty,
to propagate the canticle of the wine. 


I'm letting go of a number of habits and other things that feel like mental and physical clutter.  Some are temporary, others I'm hoping to let go of for good.

Facebook is, I think, one of the temporary ones.  I find myself checking it whenever I'm at the computer, sometimes without even having consciously intended to check it.  Like a muscle twitch.  I don't like that.  And when I was feeling particularly icky, the other night, I went there intentionally, hoping to feel cheerfully social, hoping for a little distraction from my earache and sore throat, and instead wound up feeling stressed and as if people were shouting at me (and I wasn't even in the midst of any conflict-ridden conversations, it was just something about the layout of the site and the headlines that happened to be going around).  And then of course there's been a lot of stress floating around about colds and flus, and I didn't want that floating around my head when I wasn't feeling well.

The effort it takes to remember not to check FB every minute and a half is starting to make me twitchy.

In recent conversations, several friends have mentioned things they do instead of head to FB, when they're feeling social -- sitting down to write personal letters to friends, calling family members, getting out of the house to somewhere like the library or a local cafe (somewhere they're likely to run into someone they know).  I like the idea of riding out the twitchiness and instead making a point of carving out little bits of time for one on one connection, instead of shouting out into the marketplace, hoping to be heard.

So far the experiment's only an hour or so old, and the main thing I've noticed is how much I miss candy crush.  :/  Not that surprising -- I like to do crossword puzzles and logic puzzles and play solitaire while I'm doing other things, and candy crush served that sort of purpose perfectly.  I don't have any games on my chromebook (the only way to get games on it, as I understand, is through google play, and I wasn't impressed with the ones I checked out).  I'd ask for recommendations for websites that might serve the same purpose, only...   facebook is, of course, where I generally go to get those sorts of recommendations.  :)


It's amazing what a difference it makes to have the doctor check me over and say something to the effect of "eh, you're fine, maybe a sinus infection".   Makes it so much easier to have patience with my body's healing process.

It was gorgeous outside, if beyond cold, and just being out in the sunlight for a few minutes also lifted my spirits immeasurably.

I'm finishing up my healing concoction, now (a strong garlic-ginger broth), and then I'm thinking about making something a little more tasty for lunch and settling in with some light reading.  I was going to get back to my science book, today, but I think I'll let myself take the day off from school-prep.


Okay, I've gone through and unfollowed the most prolific and least cozy of the sites and journals I'd been following (mostly political stuff, some fannish stuff), so that perhaps I can actually *find* the posts I most want to read, when I'm here.

I'm fighting off the last bits of a bug, today -- lots of tea, ginger and garlic broth, super-garlicky hummus, gargling with salt water, and napping, napping, napping.  Not how I'd hoped to spend the end of my vacation, but I obviously need the rest.

Happy New Year!

I almost never do resolutions, these days. I prefer to examine my priorities, to see if those priorities have shifted since the last time I sat with this question, and to consider the question of how well my choices reflect those priorities.

But this year, in light of the extent to which I let the school take over my energy, time, and attention, I've decided to make it a resolution to fully embrace my Hobbityness. I am not, and never have been, a career-focused person -- I do my best to do a good job at anything I take on, but when it comes down to it, family, friends, home, my community, an ongoing love of learning, and my spiritual practices are the center of my life.

My official priorities reflect that: health and fitness, a warm welcoming home, community, self-ed, music, competence, adventure.

The Hobbity resolution is really a continuation of the focus on simple pleasures that I'd had going on for a few months, last year. So far this week, I had a nice New Year's Eve nap, a pleasantly lowkey evening playing board games with a couple friends, a holiday feast with my little family, a lovely little New Moon retreat with my daughter, and a really delightfully cozy day of leftovers and quiet reading. I'm gnawing on the question of how to maintain balance and health and simplicity and mindfulness once school is open again.