Oh, how I adore January. She always dances in passing out double shots of hope and energy on the house, and out in her sparkly silver truck she has a load of blank canvasses and magic paintbrushes for anyone who's interested. She'll even send you some buns of steel by summer if you sign up now and make timely payments. I know, because I did it once, way back in 2003. Oh baby, it was marvellous. Maybe I should do it again. Hmmm.
The Beehive took a little holiday in December, as you may have already noticed-- unless you were as busy making merry as we were. Of course, those of you who regularly honor me with your company here know that I have been known to take the occasional blogging sabbatical. As a rule, I don't spend time online when we have real live guests in our home, which, happily, is usually most of December. Live first, blog later.
Which reminds me of a fitting quote I've been chewing on for a couple of decades. I once heard a music critic laud Stewart Copeland as "one of the few drummers who understands that the pause is as important as the beat." Now, there's a big thought.
Well-timed silence is what turns cacophony into a symphony.
But learning to pause is no small feat for restless souls like me. If it were, there would have been no need for God to dedicate a whole commandment to it.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, I must admit there are other less lofty and philosophical reasons for my December blogging break. First, my six year old laptop, Elvira, got super huffy with me, I suspect over her perpetually delayed retirement. Then our main household desktop fritzed out (suspiciously, within hours of having the carpets steam-cleaned). At that point, our household connectivity all came down to Claire's laptop.
Now, our dear Claire is a lovely and generous girl, but it's about as hard for me to get away with snagging her laptop as it is to sneak out of the house wearing her amazing fire-engine-red stiletto boots. (Which I regularly dream of doing.) That is to say, forgetaboutit.
Finally, our internet decided to take a long winter's nap.
Somewhere in there I decided I might as well spend December attempting to work a few minor but timely wonders. To wit:
~ We all six travelled to Memphis in a chilly winter downpour to celebrate the college graduations of two of our best beloveds, Andrew and Daniel. This wound up involving, among other things, Claire conjuring up a small firmament of paper snowflakes; the stuffing of over a hundred mushrooms; the creation of a commemorative sculpture out of (I kid you not) rice krispy treats (which grew progressively more reminiscent of the Leaning Tower of Pisa as the evening wore on); and a four-pound cheese log which I thoughtfully laced with enough garlic to protect my loved ones from vampires for the remainder of the decade.
~ Once back home, I decided to reinvent our walk-in storage closet for the new year, a two-day event to which I probably should have sold tickets because it turned out to be a pretty entertaining spectacle involving multiple avalanches and some unprecedented bodily contortions that would handily win a game of Twister, all culminating in a grand finale boondoggle for Goodwill. Whereas before one could scarcely crack the closet door without risking early burial, now, lovies, you can actually waltz in there. Well, maybe only with someone you know really well. But still. I waltz in there at least twice a day. Quite satisfying.
~ All fired up by that project, I next turned a perpetually rangey corner of our bedroom into a cozy and enticing personal study, where I am presently sitting at my Grandmother's kitchen pastry table-- now my desk-- typing by lamplight (courtesy of my lovely mother) on Twiggy, my new and remarkably skinny laptop (courtesy of my lovely husband, for Christmas) and sipping hot tea from my new birthday teapot which is sitting atop my new birthday teapot warmer (courtesy of my lovely son) in front of the corner fireplace we've been meaning to make functional for almost ten years (and now is, courtesy of both lovely husband and son). At long last, life is beautiful here in my little corner.
I tell you, anything can happen.
And now our computer woes are all resolved as well, so our pause is over, I suppose. It's time to reconnect, to start fresh, to resolve to keep doing all manner of minor but timely wonders over the course of this clean new year, with God's good help.
January brings us so much invigorating prospect of fresh redemption. And oh, how I do love redemption.
Which brings me round to this: what if... just what if we set about to redeem all the ugly metaphorical corners and all the scary, avalanche-y closets in our lives in the coming year? What if they all became places to waltz and smile and rest and make and think and breathe? What if? Why not give it a shot?
Anything is possible in January.
Happy New Year, everyone!