Friday, December 22, 2006

The days draw in as we reach The Birthday Celebration.

Already the shortest day in the year has come and gone, and if one had time to ponder the future surely the prospects of February, March and April would rouse one's gardening spirits.

However, here we are in the midst of busy and blessed days.

And I find I am not as swift as I once was. In my effort to stay calm and serene during Advent days I have reluctantly relegated some of the Christmas traditions to the Once-upon-a-time-we-used-to Era.

There are no mince tarts in the pantry. None in the freezer, either...... The outside lights are simple - no elaborate displays of stars or fancy strings of lights along the fence and through the garden.

All the myriad pieces of silver we received for wedding presents lie tarnished as the elves who used to clean them grew up and go about their own fascinating teen-age business. This will be a down to earth Christmas, - lacking in elegance, but not in joy or in a grand feast.

Despite having to play at two church services Christmas Eve we will have a modified family drop in Christmas Eve gathering supper, - Oyster Stew for those who grew up loving it, - Chili and Ham and buns for those who entered the family not knowing of this exotic tradition, and not prepared to do more than sip a little oyster broth and try to look as if they were enjoying it!!

The morning sun comes up on intermittent days, and glorifies the skies where the clouds linger over the mountain tops. On other days the clouds hang low, but the air is milder and the wind is still.

All the parcels and letters and cards have been sent away, and the most intriguing boxes surround the Christmas Tree in return.

Nicky and David, - our family who are too far away to spend Christmas with us physically, have once again made donations of various farmyard animals in the names of the family, through World Vision, and it inspires me to do the same next year (God willing!!)

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;

William Wordworth, in his time, bewailed the lack of simplicity and the loss of the core of spiritual life as we spend our energies accumulating stuff and as a consequence keeping our head to the ground, our shoulder to the wheel, our nose to the grindstone - while above the stars shine brightly and unheeded.

Ah, I am sinking into the philosophical mode and I think it is time to take up my knitting and ponder the ways of the world in a meditative mood.

All the time wishing Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Men, a joyous Christmas, and the spirit of love pervading the whole wide world.