Thursday, December 25, 2014
On Not Hurrying: Yuletide : Day Eleven
Today started out both early and gray. We had our usual chores of feeding the chickens and ducks, guinea pigs and cats, and Alex started his Yule bread dough rising. We woke to some the mildest weather in weeks, and it's been so gray this entire month, so we were looking forward to the sun that was meant to show up in the afternoon. The kettle boiled and three of us sat to have cups of dark tea while carols played, and one of us slept in just a bit longer. Soon, all of us were together, eggs were scrambled, more tea was poured, and someone said we should do stockings. Oh, yes, of course, stockings! Then we sat at the kitchen table, opening our stocking gifts and drinking more tea, and we loved one another. Alex checked his dough, punched it down, and some of us went to brush teeth and properly dress for the day. Not one of us hurried.
The not hurrying turns out to be our favorite part of Yule and Santa Day in particular. There's no need to end the day by 9am, and we all relish the postponement of opening the gifts, wrapped so charmingly. The anticipation is sweet, and we wanted to savor it. Late morning, however, we all made our way to our tree, settled into our seats, and passed each other gifts. Olivia, as she did last year, had made us all something personal; hand-knit cowls for Alex and Adam in colors that bring out their eyes, and a darling felted portrait pin of a Speckled Sussex hen for me. For the family, to go with our felt Beatrice and Annabelle ornaments she made last year, she gave us a Claudia. Now we have a trio of guinea pigs to hang on our tree. Adam made us laugh with his attempts at reading German in the booklet that came with his new wood carving set. Olivia was so pleased with her wireless speaker, music lover that she is. Alex received his usual mixture of geekery and the practical, and this year it was Terry Pratchett and chainsaw gear. And then there was me, also as usual (I think my husband delights in finding the gift that will make me cry), sobbing over the gorgeous hand painted box with the soft sculpture Santa and Reindeer inside, made by our friend, Phoebe Wahl, and even more sobbing when Alex read her note, aloud. I adore her art and even more, the way she captures the magic that I so love about Yuletide in her so many of her works. These pieces will forever be a whimsical and charming part of our Yuletide tradition.
By noon, the sun was streaming in and we were down to the last box, which was long and narrow and leaned against the wall. It was for both Adam and Olivia.
We gave the kids cross-country skis, knowing they will be put to good use here on the farm. Of course, we will need snow. This day has turned bright and sunny, and oh so green, outside. Since we had quite a bit of snow in November, we weren't very disappointed not having a white Yuletide, and I'm quite certain snow will return.
There's no hurry, after all. Not this on this day, when everything feels good and magical and precious. Blessed Yule!