Dec 7, 2013

Merry And Foggy (But Still Bright)

Like everyone else who celebrates any kind of winter festival or religious observance, I'm decking the halls and attending holiday parties and eating the shortbread when I should be saving it for company.  I'm also easing my way into the season in a relatively sane way.  I'm not getting worked up about gifts this year - they'll all fall into place, or I'll give folks an IOU on a sticky note attached to an airline bottle of rum.

While I decide if I'm going to keep working on gifts or even attempt to send out cards, I'm enjoying my December in other small ways.  When the temperature isn't -22 degrees like it is today, I still head out for a walk by the river and check out how the landbase is faring.

There are buds here, beneath the low fog, held tight in anticipation of warmer days.

In my quest to try new things I went to a ceramics studio with my cousin and splashed half a dozen layers of paint on some egg cups.  Not particularly artistic, but I can't draw a straight line, so I do what I can.  The pic below shows streaky cups, but the paint isn't dry and it will fire up quite nicely in the kiln they tell me.  My "new things" can't always be exciting - next time I'll try fire spinning.

Instead of mourning the garden, I'm working on appreciating the beauty of death and decay. I've been watching many of my plants die back and purposely not cutting them down (I'll do the extra work in the spring.)  This way I get to witness the allure of each plant stripped down to its bare soul.  Right now I'm fawning over the morning glory skeleton and its twisty loveliness.

I've been decorating today, but I'm going for a more minimalist approach this year.  Less of the same old holiday tchotchkes.  More greens, nuts, pinecones, and more natural decorations.  So far the cats are behaving, but the tree is going up tonight so I'll see if it's still standing in the morning.

Here is my little viking, assisting with the greens.  (She takes after her auntie in the nutty hat department.)  We were fortunate and came across someone's cast-off yard prunings as we were driving up into the hills - perfect for instant holiday decorating!  

I hope your December is coming along festively.  Are you dashing through the snow yet, like many of us northerners, or is your holiday shaping up rather greenly?  Do tell.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Nice beard, little viking!

Jeanne said...

The recent storm has definitely brought a 'holiday' theme to the world here. And with the temps hovering in the negative digits, it really feels like the North Pole! I expect to see reindeer go trotting down the street at any moment! :0)
I love a winter garden! I love to see the 'bare bones'. Especially if they are adorned with a frost or snow. For me it is so worth the extra Spring work just to gaze on those bones over the winter.

Linda Wildenstein said...

I love the hat and beard....good choice to chase away the cold.
I left our garden too this year and the snow we have had has been very interesting on the "leftovers". I think minimalism has a real place in our hectic lives anyway. I'm afraid of what our cats will do since this is their first year here, so we are putting up the tree, sans ornaments for a couple of days to see how much fortification is going to be necessary to keep said tree, upright. Brrrrrrr cold, stay warm. Oma Linda

Mario Zeleny said...

I don't know how you managed to take a picture of the Great Horned Winter Gnome... You're good!

Rue said...

Ha! They are notoriously difficult to capture, aren't they?

Sarah said...

We're in a snow-covered area that hasn't been snow-covered in several years, so I'm loving the whiteness. All the decorations are up - I've finally hit that balance between not enough decorations and gaudy, and I love my house this year.