Looking for answers to life's questions

I’ve wanted to write everyday but either my brain or body were just too frazzled to make any sense of it all. So, bear with me here.

Christmas gift that lasted through the new year. Thank you dear friend.

Christmas was small and quiet. Only five of us for dinner. The focus this year was my niece who is in her second year at University. She and her mother are Jewish but they do Christmas with us because we love each other. It was a very practical year. She received a simple white robe from my sister and an extra set of sheets for the extra long twin they have in the dorms from me. I washed them both and mailed them after personalizing the robe so it didn’t wander off while unattended.

The rose is significant and larger than I thought it would be.

After a week of recovery and dealing with leftover food, the process of taking down Christmas began. There are rules here in this park. No outdoor decorations after January 15. I picked the first dry day and took down all outside lights. Since Christmas is my favorite holiday because it’s so festive, I have a lot to put away. More is being given away.  Paring down takes time. Grieving must be allowed.

When you add in the fact that my daughter is moving in with me and her things must have some room, we have utter chaos in play. I had to completely unload the ‘guest’ room and figure out what to do with it all. Crafting and its accoutrements had filled the closet and spilled out everywhere. She brought in kitchen spices and things she needs for her kitchen that must fit in mine. Most of her things are going into storage or being sold, donated or dumped. We are really ‘fluffing the Chi’ in our homes this time. Nothing is untouched.

 

A gift from my son. Kinder as in Children.

 

From my son to his sister. I have seen it all now.

My feet revolted so I went to use the exercise bike at the gym on Monday to stay off them for a couple of days. I ended up at the store afterward buying two of the two cubic ft. bags of planting mix for my Lemon Cyprus that was blown over in the wind Saturday night. It felt just under tornado strength from the way my windows in the bedroom whistled most of the night. I will move its mate this weekend while we are having a short dry spell and give it more room. So much for staying off my feet.

 

Today I ignored the waves of foot discomfort again to walk the mall and have a long coffee break with a friend before things get really crazy around here. By the first of February, things should be only slightly chaotic which is normal for me.

My sewing friends enjoyed the last Christmas potluck party on Tuesday and now I wish I had taken photos. The table was so pretty, the food so good, and the company inspiring.

Today is the start of more normal, healthy eating. I don’t think my clothes or my feet could wait another day.

Did the last month go by in a flash for you as well? Is this new year shaping up to have lots of changes for you too?

 

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

 

Comments on: "A Month in a Flash" (57)

  1. Christmas was more low key than I prefer, mainly because the Husband’s family don’t go in for Christmas decorating much, and he finds it all a bit excessive. So putting my decorations away took a whole 20 minutes… 😦 Never mind, we both have to compromise. But I love the way Christmas looks at your house!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was a bit more low key this year. When my son comes for the holiday, we really do it up. But not knowing about another, well, I’m paring down and giving it mostly to him. He loves a festive holiday. My daughter helped a bit and my sister helped wrangle the tree back into the box. 😉 That was a sight. Thanks for stopping by. I’ll check in with you shortly. Hugs.

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  2. Well it seems you have been busy and that always gobbles up time doesn’t it. But good busy – lots happening and a good get together over Christmas – which is what it’s all about, yes? Your daughter is coming to stay now? I’m guessing this is a way you have found to be able to stay put and have company too – daughters are the best kind of room mates to have aren’t they 🙂 I must say your tree looks very pretty and festive. I took my small decorations down at the end of December – when I had a big house and a small family everything stayed up til twelfth night and then the ritual of putting Christmas away for another year began. It was always a bit of relief for me by then – I wanted my tidy house back. (Oi! Such a Virgo!) The tree looks happy in its new box, the apron is fun – and commodious, I do love a big roomy pinny!

    While I have no plans for big adventures this year I have already begun to work on myself becoming better at being kinder and less judgmental and I hope to get some watercolour paintings done too…… We’ll see. Whatever comes to us, lets just make the best of it and get as much enjoyment from every day as possible. Cheers m’dear! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are correct. Having my daughter here means I get to spend more time here and figure out what comes next. It’s going to help both of us. Her commute will be horrendous but she will save money and I will save some too. She is concerned because my vision is less stable and driving is an issue again. She can take time off to get me where I need to go and work from home on occasion. We’ve lived together before and it works. As for my Virgo, it’s going nuts with this place in such chaos. Every room is getting shuffled. My daughter is the official gift wrapper and if she could stand for long periods, she could have done it professionally. We even let her finish up wrapping her own gifts on occasion. 😉 There were almost none this year. Less judgemental is a tough one for us. We come by it naturally. But I do work on it too. I happen to think you are quite kind already. My little fake tree has been around many years. My sister had it one year. You can make a silk purse out of a sows ear. Put enough lights and ornaments on the tree, you don’t notice it’s shortcomings. 😉 I gave the big tree away. Too heavy for me to manage anymore. Now, working on your watercolors makes me happy to hear. You do such wonderful work. You know of course my daughter wants to live here so she can get the danglers first. She has her priorities. 😉 Big hugs to you and cuddles to Siddy and Orlando. Hello to the girls.

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      • Wrapping gifts is an art isn’t it. My eldest spends hours making everything as beautiful as she can for Christmas morning. Nowadays I’m a near-enough-is-good-enough kind of presenter. I’m very glad to hear you have come to an arrangement that helps out both of you. D and I managed very well for the two plus years she stayed here, and she was a shift worker too. It’s more a decision to make it work than it is the space I think. You might have bits of you falling off Marlene but you are still as sharp as a tack – love to you my friend and to your kids as well. Be happy xoxo

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      • I think the good enough comes with age as we see what’s really important, Pauline. I’ve been there a while now. It’s why I gave up the quilting group. Perfection was their key word. Done was mine. I’ve lived with my daughter several times but this is the first time it will be just the two of us (without the husband causing trouble) for a longer time. We rented an apartment together so I could come for longer visits. I think we will do fine together and this is helping me let go of more useless stuff. I was planning on it anyway but this lights the fire under me. 😉 The fact that she is going to work also helps. All this moving and working is good for my health. Side benefit. 😉 I’m pretty darn happy and love change. Enjoy your summer. Our winter hasn’t really materialized yet. So very warm this year. Thanks for being there and understanding. Hugs.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, mein Gott en himmel!
    Now I want to buy another thing from reading your blog.
    After all, all our cars have “Caution German Driver,” bumper stickers, thanks to you.
    Now I want your sweatshirt!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Du bringst mich zum Lachen, Cindy. My son made up the phrase so you are welcome to it. He went to an embroidery shop in his town and had it done. We do have fun in our family. I’m hoping to catch up with my reading soon. ;( Now I must go see if I can find the floor in my sewing room. I’ve gutted it again. 😉

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  4. You’ve been busy enough for ten people! So glad you could save your lovely little tree, it’s the most brilliant colour ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Jill. It smells like lemon if you touch it too. For a woman my age, I’m almost busier than when my kids were small. Love it though I’m ready for more sewing time. I’ve gutted that room too. ;(

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  5. You have been so busy. No wonder there wasn’t time to write. I love the shirt your son gave you. It’s good to know that one of your kind kinder is moving in with you. All the sorting and decluttering will be worth it in terms of the lovely space you will be able to share.

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    • Thank you for the visit, Mandy. I’m finally breathing again. 😉 My son has a great sense of humor. He will always be a Kinder. 😉 You know how it goes, one thing leads to another and every room has to shift. But the clearing out needed to be done anyway so now the push is on. I’m looking forward to having her with me again.

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  6. I’m happy you had a nice Christmas with your family, Marlene. You look adorable in the apron! Yes, the past month did go by in a blur. We squeezed in Christmas celebrations while in the process of downsizing my parents…a crazy time, indeed. Happy New Year! I’m so happy your daughter is moving in with you. You’ll have so much fun! xo

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    • Thanks for the visit, Jill. I was just writing in your notebook this morning and thinking of you. You really know what I’m talking about here with downsizing your parents. That’s why I said grieving is a must. It’s letting go of dreams. Her commute will be horrendous, but it will help us both. We are both quiet and introverted so it’s a good fit. Good luck with your parents process too. Hugs,

      Liked by 1 person

      • Aw…it’s always nice to be thought of, Marlene…thank you. Yes, I know exactly what you’re talking about. It really is emotionally exhausting. As a quiet, introvert myself, I’d fit right in with you two! 🙂 Thank you for your kind words. xo

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  7. It looks like you had a wonderful Christmas, Marlene! And, yes, very busy! I love seeing all the different house quilts–what variety. I can’t imagine the chaos, though, of having your daughter move in–you’ll both have to make a lot of compromises.

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    • Transition is the name of the game, Kerry. We are both giving up a lot but we will both gain a lot as well. The rest of the ladies did a lot of applique on their houses, I cheated somewhat at Emily’s suggestion since I don’t do applique…yet. I machine embroidered mine. I learn so much from them. Thanks for stopping by.

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  8. What a busy time. I have been in your shoes a few times when each of my girls moved home for one reason or another, bringing kids and dogs. While it was chaos it was also good Good luck with resting up.

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  9. The holidays came and went here, much more quietly than in your home! So you had the wind as well recently? It was so widespread up this way, and so damaging-many still without power. We worked off of generators at the hospital. Really eerie to wander around hallways that are darker than normal. It was so very quiet as well…

    Liked by 1 person

    • I read about the power outages. I had just unplugged my laptop when ours went out but just for a moment. I’m glad hospitals have backup generators. I live in a trailer so big wind makes me nervous. 😉 It’s quite the adjustment from big to little holidays. I miss the big family gatherings but not enough to go back to what was quite trying. 😉 Glad you got through the wind and the holiday. Hope your new year is even better.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I love Christmas also…I don’t love cooking for masses of people as my house only holds seven comfortable (when it come to food). As for STUFF oh my do I have to get rid of stuff.
    Happy New Year Marlene…having your daughter around will be nice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Linda. My place held the 5 of us comfortably but the first year I was here, I think we were 12. Shoehorned in. 😉 The paring down is hard but must be done. I’m looking forward to more time with my daughter.

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  11. Hehe! Totally love that shirt your son got for you. 😉 That lemon cyprus looks so happy and healthy, what a beautiful little tree! And all the quilts are amazing! You and your friends certainly know how to keep busy. 😉 Just love the squirrel in one of the houses. 😊
    And all the best for making room for your daughter! It can’t be easy.😉 Pew! All decorations to be removed til the 15th? Your neighbours are quite tough! 😂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the visit, Sarah. I live in a private managed manufactured home park. We lease the land for our houses but the owner of the park who collects an exorbitant amount of rent, has a say about how things look at every house. There are lots of photos on my blog when I moved in here in July of 2014. I feel safe here so I stay. Have a great weekend. Ours will be spent moving her stuff and mine. ;))

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  12. So sew nice to see the work going on. Yours has such beautiful sentiments. May the new year progress with a lighter step … and hopefully lighter body for me as well!

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  13. Oh my goodness, Marlene you’ve been busy! While different, this last month has been a whirl of activity like you described for me too. It feels good to have Christmas packed away until next year and to eat lighter, healthier food. Cheers to this New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Best of luck sorting out your home for you both. Sounds like a very busy Christmas. Yes some changes here too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s the only fast rule of life, is change. Seems like many are having changes. We are going to need all the luck we can get. Two old unwell women and a young unwell one trying to do all the moving alone. Hope your changes aren’t difficult. Thanks for stopping by, Cathy.

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  15. Marlene, you are one of the most active & productive humans I have ever known. I love all your sewing projects. We had no Christmas this time since we still had some work scheduled the day after Christmas. Kudos to you for packing up your decorations. There still are some reindeer on a roof down the street from here. 😉

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  16. Beautiful Gifts and fabulous embroidery Marlene… The Decorations at Dreamwalker’s came down on the 4th of Jan, we had a quiet one. but very happy time with immediate family.
    Love your apron and your houses..
    And speaking of clearing out, yes, on hubby going up into the loft before Christmas to get the decorations out, we need some serious clearing out.. The accumulation of things you put up there..
    We had a Kitchen revamp around ten years ago putting lots of things out the old kitchen up there.. Its time to clear, de-clutter and simplify..
    So I can see your dilemma for creating more space for your daughter..
    I didn’t know a left handed pen was in existence.. 🙂 LOL

    I hope your feet ease Marlene.. and yes, my waist line has expanded in over indulgence of Christmas food 😀
    More walking on the cards this New Year.. And Me Time…
    Love and Mega Hugs my friend..
    Good to see your happy smiles Marlene on your apron photo..
    Much love your way.
    Sue ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • We were probably taking decorations down at the same time, Sue. 🙂 It takes me longer but my sister came to help me wrestle the tree into the box. 😉 What a sight that was. I have no attic space, no basement and a tiny utility shed so I have to rent offsite storage. Mine is quite damp so I’m careful what goes in there and it’s a creepy place. The apron was made for my daughter to do her gift wrapping and keep things handy. She’s extremely good at it. I didn’t know there was a left handed pen either. My son bought it for his sister and I asked her yesterday if there was any benefit to it. She just shrugged. Time will tell. The clearing here continues. Relentlessly. Giant squishy hugs to you.

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  17. You have been busy! I love all the house and home quilts. Each one is so different. The one block on yours that home is where the stories begin is my favorite. Like you, I dislike taking down all the Christmas decorations. It always feels like a chore. I’m not so sure I could transplant a fallen tree – very impressive, Marlene. I hope your daughter’s moving in with you is a good thing. I find big changes difficult. We haven’t had snow up here in New England yet, and that’s just fine with me! I so enjoyed your blog post and catching up on your news. Best to you, Marlene!

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    • Thank you for stopping by and the kind words, Jennie. I hadn’t meant to let a whole month go by but it’s been a wild ride so far. My daughter and I do well together and she’s concerned about me being alone, etc. My health is ? questionable. 😉 I’m with you, hold the snow please. None here yet so far either. 😉 The first thing my daughter brought to her new room here; her books! 😉 The tree wasn’t large, the digging down to the tap root was the chore. I’ll move the next tree Tues before the next rain. Just so you know, my sister, 65 me, 70 and my daughter 45 with Fibromyalgia moved all her stuff into cars and truck. Determined women can do anything under the worst of conditions. 🙂 But I sitting for a good part of today with my feet up.;) Hugs to you.

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      • Marlene, you rock! The three of you moving everything is very impressive. Determined women really can do anything. Sounds like all you need are new feet or really good shoes. We have one of those shoe stores that carries brands no one has heard of and take an hour to listen and fit you. It’s one of the few cases where you get what you pay for. I’m so glad you and your daughter do well together. Sounds like it is the perfect move. How wonderful that the first thing she brought was her books. Happy winter to you, Marlene! 🙂

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      • Working on finding a good shoe. Expensive doesn’t mean good. 😦

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      • You are right!

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  18. Oh, I know what downsizing or “room-making” feels like! Did a lot grieving when moving permanently from a big house in MD to a condo here in FL…I am convinced that if you have room you’ll always fill it, at least it’s so for me. Love the quilting you do with your sewing friends! I have never been good at such creativity and admire those who are.
    It is indeed good to get back to normal, healthy eating after the holidays….I am trying to practice it too, but still have to ‘fight’ the sweet tooth that grew big and bold over the last three weeks 😀 I wish you much joy in the new year, hugs

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    • Thanks for the visit, Helen. I’ve been downsizing for the last 8 years and will probably continue as time goes on. It’s hard to let go of treasured items in order to move forward. Getting the sweet tooth under control isn’t easy at any time is hard. Still haven’t won that battle.

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  19. So lovely to find another post from you, Marlene! I am further from the coast here near Salmon Arm, so we didn’t get the wind at all, but power was out on the coast, especially in some of the Gulf Islands, for days and days. I heard from my daughter in law that their friends lost the power, so DIL cooked two turkeys and the other family came for Christmas! I loved that. So nice you got that wee tree transplanted; it’s a gorgeous colour, I think.

    I really like the house and home quilts. I’ve been thinking of making one for myself once I’m settled again, so it was nice to see yours. I’m with you on ‘done’ being the operative word, rather than ‘perfect’. It’s why I called my Fair Isle style cardi a ‘barn cardi’ as if I would wear it to muck out my (nonexistent yet) barn . . . kept me from wanting to frog it every few rows . . .

    I love aprons and the one you made is wonderful; I bet your daughter loves it! I got a free pattern for one called an Ambrosia Apron from the Stitch Upon A Time store (I have quite a few of their patterns and am delighted with the ones I’ve used so far). If you are interested in seeing it, you can google the name and the site will come up. It’s an old-fashioned apron, similar to ones my Mum and the Aunties wore back when I was young. I’ve always wanted one and soon I shall have it! I have a couple of rolls of Swedish Tracing Paper, so after I print out the size I want and tape the pieces together, I trace it out and then use the tracing paper for my forever pattern.

    Our Christmas was quiet and a bit different this year; we opened the stockings and all the gifts on Christmas Eve. My cousin’s wife said it was the tradition in her family growing up. But it left nothing but dinner for Christmas Day. This year I insisted on saving the turkey bones and the juices from the roasting. Put them in the freezer for a few weeks and then made two soups; turkey – vegetable and turkey – butternut squash. I love the squash soup normally, but with the turkey in it, it’s different. Still good, though.

    Like you, I’ve always loved cooking the big holiday meals (I love doing the clean-up the next day, too! by hand, if you can believe. It gives me time to remember and be grateful). It’s another thing I hope to do once I’m in a place of my own. It won’t be family, then, but I’m sure I can find a few other elders to invite . . .

    I find it hard to believe your park has such stringent rules; I’d have a very hard time adapting to all that. I do like places not to have actual trash and rusting cars, etc., but otherwise, I love the variety brought by other people’s differences and quirkiness. I can understand why you stay there, though.

    My heart is with you on the downsizing and the sharing of so much of your possessions. Not easy, is it? I’ll be doing the same with the things in my storage once I’m settled. But I do hope to use much of it, too. I already let go of most of the furniture; don’t care if I have a bed, so long as I have yarns, fabrics and all that creative stuff.

    I’m happy your daughter is moving in with you. My Mum and I were both quiet introverts, too, and it worked out well for us. You’ll make it work, in any case. I’m impressed by the three of you doing the moving on your own. Wish I could have popped by to help. I’m tall and still strong and I’m walking better since I was away. I walked quite a lot last summer.

    I’m impressed by the way you personalized that robe; the rose is amazing! And the sweatshirt is perfect! Took me a minute to ‘get it’ hahaha. My Dad spoke Low German with his father, so I’ve heard it, but we were never taught any of our heritages. I’m busy now with an online free program called DuoLingo, where I am learning Norwegian!! It’s not hard and i’m having a lot of fun with it. I just wish some of the Aunties were still here to share that with. And my Mum . . .

    Well, this is becoming a book, again . . . please know you are in my thoughts always. I’m planning to send you an email soon, too. Love and Light, my friend. ~ Linne

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    • Thanks for stopping by and catching me up on some of what you are doing. I’ll have to send an email shortly. I was doing the DuoLingo too for awhile. Just ran out of time with so much else to do. I’ll keep you posted soon.

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  20. Hello Marlene, I thought I had left a comment, but now I’m remembering that I read your post just before sleep and decided to wait till I was more awake, hoping to minimize the typos. Let me know how I do. 😉

    You must be in countdown mode now as we head in to week three of January. Boy this month is moving quickly. I’m happy to hear that this move will be beneficial for both of you (except for that long commute). I wish I was there to help with the reorganizing and to have breakfast at one of your numerous fun restaurants. Sending love and patience and light your way. xo

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  21. Marlene, those quilts are amazing (including yours, which might have been my favorite) and I loved the apron you made. I don’t know which I envy most, having a daughter or having one that would be willing to live with me! 🙂 Like you I’m in the “paring down” phase of life and it was helpful to have your reminder that time and the willingness to grieve a bit are essential to the process. I wish you a lovely year in 2019!

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    • Thank you for stopping by, Julia. Yes, I am truly blessed to have a son and a daughter. I adore them both and they are quite different from one another. I don’t think I could manage without them both. Everything in life needs to be grieved when you let go of it. Even dreams of how we wanted it to be. I took photos of a lot of things that I’ve parted with. It’s like fresh flowers. They are so beautiful and smell so wonderful, then fade away and die. You just have to let them go back to the garden to nourish the soil. Hope 2019 is all you want it to be.

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  22. I have to say that…fortunately or unfortunately (depending on how you look at it, lol) we STILL have Christmas decorations up. Hehe. They’ll probably be up until February partly because we didn’t put them up til Christmas Eve. And…I kind of like the festive touch and it (mostly) matches Valentine’s Day. 😂 In any case, what a trip that your daughter’s moving in. I’m sure it’s at once awesome and…a little overwhelming, probably. All the moving and rearranging, I know that’s not all that easy. And it’s time consuming. But I can imagine you both making quilts, getting coffee and enjoying life together. And the quilting you do. I’m *all admiring* – what talent and skill! And the fact that you embroider – I’m just blown away by your talent. Wow! I also have to comment on those left-handed pens. I’m left handed, you see. I am going to have to look for some of those and see if they exacerbate the little bony bump on my middle finger of my left hand or if they are really comfortable to write with. Hehe. I hope your January is going well, my friend. xo

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  23. I always hate to put my Christmas things away – but it always feels really good once I’ve completed the task.

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