Halfway to Spring
Yesterday I didn't get much knitting done: the child and I took down the Christmas tree.
I figured out a long time ago that there were two extremes of putting up and taking down the tree around Christmas time: at one end, you had the people who put the tree up at the earliest possible moment, say Hallowe'en.
(And I'm ignoring, la la la, the stores that put out Christmas decorations in July. La la la.)
At the other end, you have people who put the tree up and decorate it on Christmas Eve, the "Santa brings the tree and all" people.
But the far end of the season has its own extremes: very often, the same people who put their tree up the earliest are the ones whose front door opens on December 26th so they can pitch the tree into the trash, missed tinsel trailing.
And the ones who waited to put it up later generally also wait and take it down later.
I like to have the tree up about a week before Christmas, so I can enjoy it lighted and decorated in the dark of winter. After Christmas, I like to leave it up because it's a festive green thing in a season when Michigan does not show a lot of green. I figure I'm good if it's down by Valentine's Day, although that depends on the tree.
I try to buy a balsam fir if I can find one for sale. Their needles cling on tightly. But if the tree is dropping needles like crazy, I might draw the line at Twelfth night.
This year, I started wanting the light in the living room, so when we changed calendars and the kid said, "When are we going to take the tree down?" I said, "How about tomorrow?" (Which is now yesterday.)
Coincidentally, yesterday was Groundhog Day or Imbolc, the cross-quarter day halfway between the winter solstice (dark, dark, dark) and the vernal (spring) equinox. Somehow it felt really appropriate to be taking my midwinter symbol of life in the dark down on that day.
So now it's down, and the light of the longer days can shine in and give me more natural light to knit by.
I can't think of a smooth way to segue to this photo, but I'm sharing it anyway.
Ajax's dog chow comes in three-layer bags, and I tear the outer paper layers off for recycling, and throw the inner plastic layer in the trash.
As I was standing by the trash can doing this, Ajax came up and stuck his head in the bag to see if any kibbles were hiding in the bottom. He spent at least a minute trying to force his head and shoulders down to the bottom of the bag, and I had plenty of time to snatch up the camera and take his picture.