it HAS been too long. i won't go back and check old postings, because know i will get sucked in too deeply, i'll get sad and want to start reading things that - like an old diary, really - are best left on the top shelf of an unused closet, where you aren't apt to fall in and not come back out again.
i think i can pinpoint the waning and then demise of my post writings to the slow, slow decline of using my laptop for anything other than printing out postage labels for my jewelry sales. seriously. the use of a smart phone has become so much a part of my daily busy-ness that i'm not sure i even know how to use a typed blog format anymore. but i'm giving this a shot, which will surprise a whole lot of readers who were once very loyal and - well, who were always here. i can't promise that this will once again become a regular practice.
time seems to grow more and more scarce, in spite of the fact that i am living what would seem a simplistic lifestyle way out in the middle of the woods, with only my pup Walter to keep me occupied. but this isn't really true. anyone who is self employed will understand how much work that entails, and how much time. anyone who has a greatly aged or aging parent, who wants to help in their life's pleasures and in whatever little tasks that can be accomplished - well, you will understand how much time this takes up as well, particularly if you don't live in the same area as your mother or father, if you have to drive six hours at a stretch one way. the coming and the going takes more than just the time to drive; it involves hours of packing clothing, as well as work supplies for a portable "studio", food and bed and stuffies for Walter, on and on and on. books. laptop. paperwork. packing supplies. artwork supplies. to add the hours spent writing a blogpost on top of everything else begins to feel like a chore, a responsibility, and that is when i push it aside and move on to the task right at hand. now, years later, i'm writing yet another post that may or may not ever get published. we shall see. Just in trying to load photographs into the typepad format, i am reminded of how excrutiating it was to sit and wait while photos loaded. forever.
I’ve just made it through to the other side of what turned out to be a very unexpected snow storm, particularly for mid december, when all we usually get is a drizzly rain. i grabbed a wooden ruler and stuck it through some snow on the flat part of the back deck saturday mid day, after two nights and an entire day and another morning of nonstop snow, and came up with a measurement of 9". i thought i must be measuring incorrectly, but online statistics proved me right. it was beautiful. all that white draped through the woods and over the cabin makes for a splendid way to photograph the most ordinary of things we see from day to day: tree trunks and bare limbs looked frosted, and things were very, very, verrrrry quiet. there was no one else anywhere around me; my neighbor is in the process of moving, and her basement tenant was away for the weekend. walter and i wandered through woods that seemed new to us; i threw sticks, and he dove for them with crazy, wild abandon, back legs springing back and ears flopping straight out to the sides.
i stood still in the middle of those woods and strained my ears to see if i could identify any sound within my reach, yet all in the whole world of Heartrock Hill that i could hear was perhaps a tiny rustle of a dried leaf left hanging on a spindly dry twig. that was it. no birds, no distant dogs barking, and of course, no cars. it was if i had stepped all the way back in time to when no one had built houses on these mountains, and there was only the little stream meandering through the woods at the bottom of my hill.
what do you do when you are forced to come to a slow stop and must, for the most part, stay tucked away inside? i busied myself with the mandatory chores - firewood hauling from outside into the cabin's wood stove, shoveling snow from doorways so that walter wouldn't have to plow through all that white stuff to get to the yard, gathering dry twigs sheltered from snow on the front porch.
chili making, fire lighting, water drawing in case the power went. after that? a fire was kindled, dinner was eaten, and i settled onto the sofa by the fire to stitch with needle and embroidery thread. times like that are blissfully peaceful, cozy, warm, and i have to force myself to rise and head back to the bedroom before it gets to be the middle of the night. i worked on jewelry that required a needle and thread; i savored the work that was quiet, and still. walter snoozed. and the days passed, just like that.
Now, christmas is almost upon us. i busy myself in the studio during the day, trying to rustle up some trinkets that you folks might like to purchase for loved ones, or - a little wink here - something for yourself. i think ahead to a week or so from now when, once again, i head back down to alabama to be with my sweet mama, and after a few days, with one of my sons and his wife. i have a son in the middle of a gigantic move to Los Angeles, of all places, and watch the news of voracious wildfires with worry anew. i have friends there, and now i will have a treasured son, his gal, and their pups to worry about. i have one son on the west coast, and one on the east coast, in baltimore. and i am right here in the middle of nowhere, not really in a halfway place to anything. i am here, it is my quiet little frenzied life, i tinker and torch, i twist and burn, i continue to hammer my heart into pieces of silver. that much of my story has not changed. i am here, even though i have not been. i am here. you are maybe there. and life goes on. xo
i leave you for now with hearty salutations for the winter holidays, as well as the warmest of cozy wishes for all good things. never forget to tell your loved ones how much you love them, every single time you are walking out the door or hanging up the phone. we all could use a little more love theses days. remember that. xo