Well, I have had what I think was a proper holiday. This truth hit me hardest when I had to go dig through a bin in the basement to find a pair of pants that fit. Yesterday was Ephiphany. Today is day one of cleaning up my diet. It’s cold, raining, and dreary. My kids are “bored” and wild. I wish I had a slice of apple pie.
I turned 42 last week and minus the age, it was probably my favorite birthday ever. I attribute this to my decision to celebrate over a few days rather than just one. It’s hard to squeeze enough into just one day, especially considering how many other things (not so fun things) must happen on any given day, birthday or not. The day before my birthday I celebrated with a few friends and went a little crazy, going so far as to drink some sort of spiced Christmas wine. I never drink anymore. Just the smallest amount and I was almost tipsy, though I might have imagined that. (Jonny was driving. I really wasn’t crazy.) The day of my birthday Jonny made me a special breakfast and we went out to dinner that evening followed by seeing Little Women at the theater. It was so good! I loved it! You should go see it! The following day, it was noticed (I won’t say by whom) that my children had mostly neglected to acknowledge my birthday so celebrations rolled into a third day. Jonny sent the kids to Barnes & Noble with a credit card, a spending limit, and instructions to buy me a gift. They came back with two jigsaw puzzles and a bouquet of flowers and I was so happy.
The key to my relaxation has been a combination of making myself do it and jigsaw puzzles. I don’t know if you have ever picked up on it but I tend to get a little obsessive sometimes (either I hide it well here or you are totally laughing at me right now because it’s so obvious.) I am currently a little obsessed with puzzles. They really help calm my mind. I remember my stepmother having puzzles going when I was a child. She worked enormous ones. I may be exaggerating but I remember them having 5000 pieces or so. 500 piece puzzles are more my speed, though 1000s are nice as well because they last longer. I never considered working on puzzles myself because it seemed impossible with so many little ones around. The puzzle table I ordered before Christmas has changed this because I can put it out of reach when I need to. (We have this one. This one looks similar though larger by a couple of inches. Amazon links are affiliate links.) This table is currently my most prized possession. But it’s not only me working on puzzles. Frequently I sit down to work and I am quickly joined by so many other sets of hands that I have to sigh and put my own hands in my lap. Jigsaw puzzles have created more cozy family evenings in recent days than I can remember in a long time. Even little Mabel is able to work on them! The 500 piece puzzles are perfect for sharing with my younger kids.
Since finishing all the Christmas knits, I’ve been working on this hat for Silas. Beatrix wishes it were hers. I have to agree that it does suit her well. I knit this in a skein of Cestari wool that I dyed with indigo (and sumac berries I think) years ago and stashed rather than selling because I loved the color so much. I’m not ready to start any big knitting projects yet and have several more hats planned.
This feels like a messy, disorganized post, but that’s how it is after a break! I know I must have more to tell you, but maybe I’ll just keep it simple: remember the 3-day birthday strategy and jigsaw puzzles. If you haven’t already, you might want to try both.
p.s. I put links to most of the puzzles in this post in my sidebar along with a couple that I want to work soon!
p.p.s. Our Christmas tree is still up. I don’t want to take it down, but it looks terrible so I guess I will.