I've been in a bit of a winter funk. Christmas stuff seemed to spring on me all too early, and I don't seem to have the energy for it.
I managed to get out to a tree farm and with our son's help, get the tree decorated. I did get out shopping the other day, but I feel like my buying-stuff impulse is completely broken. Instead of enjoying picking things out, I felt overwhelmed by the wall of choices.
My husband gives a present every Christmas Eve to his extended family of his time and his cooking skills, buying the ingredients and making the seafood chowder his busia used to make for Christmas Eve. (This is not a cheap gift, not with bay scallops and oysters and lobster tails and shrimp all in one kettle.)
I find myself wishing I could do something like that. I've never felt I was that good at picking stuff out for other people. In the past I've been buying gift cards, but when two of last year's choices ended up in bankruptcy this year, even that seems like a risky choice.
I often feel I live in a country where the pursuit of happiness is assumed to be achievable by acquiring enough stuff. And I'm just tired of stuff.
Today I did not go out to even look at stuff. It was cold, with a high of 28 degrees F (-2 C). At 2 am. The temperature plummeted from there, and sat around 8 F (-13 C) most of the day, with occasional dips down to 6 F (-14 C). Between that and blowing snow, it seemed like a good idea to stay home, knit and make some bread.
When I was a kid, I never understood how winter could begin on December 21st. The astronomical event of the winter solstice doesn't correspond to the meteorological events of winter here. When you've had snow since November, what does it mean to say winter starts in December?
The solstice is the bottom of the gully as far as daylight goes. We're down to nine hours and something as of today. From here on out, it's all uphill into longer days.
This is all the same scarf with different yarns alternating and running out and new ones alternating. I've been knitting on it for so long, it's hard to believe the end is in sight. It's the same purple (it started out purple) waffle scarf that I started back in January of 2007. Only ten or so inches to go.