Tag Archives: happy holidays

Joyous Diwali Everyone

Not being a native of India, nor raised in Hinduism, I’m certain my version of Diwali is far from typical or traditional. I have a small home altar tucked in a high corner of my bedroom. I don’t know all the puja and rituals, and have the most basic understanding of the holiday.

However, I love the celebration of our inner light and our oneness filling the world with the light of the divine. I aim for bringing that to my world as much as possible. And after the week I’ve had, I am very grateful that I was reminded by Isha that Diwali had begun.

This is my small celebration of light.

May you all have a Joyous Diwali and see the light in everyone this week. May your individual light shine bright and help bring joy to this world.

Siva Hir Su

Jingle Bells, tummy turns, and Happy New Year’s

So I’ve been super busy. Working 7 days a week still. It’s going well all things considered.

The man I was filling in for came back to work, but not at his best, which wasn’t great too begin with. So management decided to hang on to me full time in a, just in case, sort of way. I did the decorations (see last post) and then began working on odd jobs that mostly amounted to cleaning up other’s messes. Other than being an odd situation, I have done well and hung in, completing each assignment in a reasonable amount of time. I was careful not to move to quickly to land myself without work, but not too slow to undo the trust I’d built with management.

I cover weekend entertainment, which meant I had a good time with salvation army carolers and our cookie party 2 weeks ago. It was a blast- they had me direct jingle bells intentionally leaving them hanging mid-chord to encourage money tossing (see pic below), and afterwards I received a compliment from the manager I thought least likely to ever compliment anyone. It felt really good.

That was right at Yule and we celebrated Yule after work with a fire and Nathan’s (Girlfriend)… I use that term loosely because I’m not sure they have decided to commit that label yet. I enjoyed hulk-smashing a couple of logs for the fire and watching Ian and Anya get their fire element on. Then I burned all of the leftover incense that I bought the one shopping trip in September (I wrote about it too). It was necessary release, and after a few tears I felt better.

Then last week I caught a round of stomach flu and spent Sunday and much of Christmas Eve sick in bed. My dad had visited for the holiday to bring kids gifts which was much appreciated, but since I was down sick he decided to cut his stay short and left Christmas Eve afternoon. Katherine spent Christmas day sick and Nathan was sick the day after. I think because Ian and Anya had been sick the week before they were spared from this round. Regardless of having gotten sick I very much enjoyed the resulting 3 days off, and admitted that sometimes I think I get sick to make sure I have some downtime.

Our family had a good holiday and kids enjoyed their gift receiving. Grandad was very impressed with little Katherine, how aware she is, being very interactive, and how well she was able to stand, squat, crawl, and creep along furniture. He kept saying she’s going to take off really walking any day now, and we just kept agreeing.

This week I have just New Year’s Day off, and I’m going to milk it for all it’s worth, as it’s my only day off in January.

I’m very much looking forward to starting the new year with a day off and being healthy; besides it’s a Pig year and being born in a Pig year that means I’m supposed to have great fortune this year. I’ve decided that’s a good omen, a lucky year starting with an actual day off (I’ve not always had New Year’s Day off, so it counts).

May you all find this year lucky and have just the right amount of time off for yourselves.

Busy working or hardly working?

I’ve been so busy I haven’t been able to do that feel good update. I promised pictures of my veteran’s day service and craft projects I’ve done lately, but I’ve been busy decorating the building at work and so many other things that I never got to it. So, I guess I’ll just have a picture heavy post today.

Veterans day – I only received 2 from my coworker I can post. I’m not allowed to use any pictures where you can tell who the residents are. So these ones are okay, being you can’t see full resident faces. That’s me at the podium, and the gentleman in the blue shirt was my younger veteran volunteer handing out the certificates.

Crafts:

First decoupage platters made with paper napkins…

My first 2 (I’ve since done a third I don’t have a picture of yet):

Finished resident projects:

Sharpie art:

Mine:

I only had a couple of resident examples of the sharpie dye art, but it seems I must’ve used a different device to take those pictures, as I can’t find them now.

Finally, I finished most of the building decorations today, so here’s pictures of my handy work. Everyone loved my “flower” arrangements and holiday trees. I’m glad they liked my work.

It was very fun decorating such large trees. I had never decorated a tree even the size of the smaller one, and the larger one was 2 or 3 feet taller and much wider.

I even dressed up a couple of year round arrangements…

And made a cluster of mini-trees for our Angel Gift Tree. Next week they will be covered in Angel tags for residents donating gifts.

As for home, we are still getting settled, so decorations have not even been attempted, but our living room and bedrooms are to comfy stage, enough unpacked to feel like home.

May you all have a pretty, creative, comfy, and joyfully busy holiday this year.

Happy New Year and many blessings!

This message is short and to the point. Have a beautiful New Year with many blessings. 

Regardless if you choose to make resolutions or not, find space in your heart and your schedule to share kindness with your fellow humans and spread love in the coming year. That is what I wish for everyone, love, kindness, and many, many blessings. (Which I believe that the latter automatically follows the 2 former).

It is one of my many goals for the coming year. Along with better self-care, self-love, and hopefully making strides to improve life for my family.

May you all meet your own goals in the coming year so we can all celebrate a better time this time next year!

Joyous Hana-kwanza-chrisma-yule-ness

It’s the holiday season. Joyful happy wishes abound. Hallmark channel will sure help lift the mood. That or a thousand classic holiday movies.

We’ve had a tiny Charlie-Brown-Esque celebration this morning, for us technically a belated Yule celebration being I worked the last several days. It’s followed by a trip to friends for the misfits Christmas party this evening.

I’ve had a mild head-cold all week, and I’m just run down from working too much, but I’m doing my best to stay buoyant. Sleeping in with cute kitties was a bonus.

( I’d show pics of the rest of our celebration, but Nathan and Anya did all the photo taking so I’ll get those later on.)

My day off started at about 7pm last night. Despite very much looking forward to my time off and being in generally good spirits, the boy has weighed heavily on my mind. 

I felt him all day yesterday and though it was nice to feel him, especially in my heart being afire, I couldn’t help but wish I’d hear from him or even see him. It’s very confusing to feel him like that periodically, but not have anything else. He’s only ever validated the connection once and though I know that should be enough I can’t help but wonder why he didn’t talk about it, and why he’s quit communicating all together. My natural inclination is to blame myself, but I constantly work at reminding myself it is much more complex than that. I’ve resigned myself to loving him as I can, and knowing that some day, maybe after I die, I’ll understand fully.

So I pushed him out of my mind and slept mostly well, save for a scary dream about Nathan and health stuff. He’s actually doing OK, as far as current doctors are concerned. He’s working on the low kidney function, brought his sugars back down, and his blood pressure is getting there. He’s even finally got the black lines diagnosed. Apparently, if it had been the scary melanoma there would have been other symptoms with the line. The doctor was sure it was a fungus that produces a similar line and has started an anti fungal treatment with caution to watch for the other symptoms of the melanoma or the lines failing to dissipate. So essentially Nathan is, as far as we know, getting better.

That is a blessing. Our tiny celebration is a blessing. I had a good laugh over the kittens finding great fun in new cat toys and some catnip this morning. We’ve even been told of some possible houses that are coming open soon. So things are generally OK to hopeful.

Amidst laughing over kitties and having sweets with kids, I suddenly felt funny like I was going to pass out. Nathan immediately took my blood pressure and discovered I was very low. Kind of a good thing, but I need to keep it from being so low that I actually pass out. So the last few hours I’ve been downing liquids with electrolytes added and attempting to get my salt intake up, and I took a couple of extra iron supplements just in case. Also a blessing. Low is better than high in pregnancy and much easier to control. A couple of days of diligent liquid and iron intake and I should be fine.

And baby didn’t seem to mind she/he kicked several times during and has been very active  since. I’m sure baby is enjoying the electrolyte boost as much as I am. I’m grateful that I’m feeling baby more and more these days. It makes the efforts worth it. I finally am starting to actually feel pregnant, now that my belly is unmistakably showing it!

I hope everyone reading can find their blessings and happy moments and feel improvement on its way. May the spirit of the holidays bring you peace, joy, and hope. Be well and many blessings.

Creative relief.

Still no new home.

 Cats dwindled down to 3 again. One, sick from old age, was euthanized to prevent pain and suffering. Being she was having difficulty seeing, showing signs of kitty dementia, and when she tried sitting, couldn’t actually fully sit (kitty hip dysplasia) and be comfortable. We knew she was miserable. Our hearts went out to her as we helped her find a path back to god.  Salem our older male disappeared outdoors and after 2 months of searching and examining found similar stray cats we’ve given up. Social media gave us hopeful leads, but alas none were Salem.

The  2 others never took to being indoor kitties and were rehomed to a farm cat rescue where they’ll be happy as clams and well fed  in their preferred environment. 

That leaves Buddy and Missy (the brother & sister kittens) and Priss (my old fat calico). 

Buddy & Missy cuddling ( they’re the same age at about a year old, but Buddy has gotten much bigger and stockier). They are so adorable!:

The only recent cute shot of Priss I have, she was thoroughly enjoying lap snuggle with Anya.:

 

For the holidays, we have one tiny undecorated table top tree out, and so far Anya is the only one to have gifts, having gotten to use all the Walmart gift cards to buy new clothes.

So, Monday when I had my first actual day off in ages, I decided to be creative. $40 in supplies (including raw balsa wood boxes) and hours of work later, I made 2 beautiful portable altar boxes and a set of mini elemental candle holders. 

The idea was spawned from a borrowed set. The friend that helped me gain insight into my connection with the boy had loaned me hers knowing I’m never home for meditative space anymore. After almost 2 months of using hers it was time to get creative and make my own. Nathan got a box of his own as a gift.

It was much needed creative relief, and yielded beautiful results that I know at least that I’ll use.

The mess I made of our bedroom trying to work in tight quarters:

The green box left of buddy is the borrowed inspiration:

Nathan’s box with his favorite motif on the top:

inside:

outside top:

My box, Inside:

My box outside(s):

& the tiny candle holders:

I even got tiny statues of Ganesh and Shiva for both boxes. I want Kali ones too, but haven’t found those yet.

Being creative literally is not only enjoyable for me, but helps clear my head completely. I lose time, and don’t eat- not because I’m starving myself, but because my brain doesn’t even think about getting hungry. I don’t watch the clock, and I’m always surprised at how much time has passed. It in and of itself, it is often meaningful and meditative giving my brain a much needed tiny, tiny vacation. When all is done and my brain returns to “reality”, I get starvingly hungry very quick and then crash from fatigue. This instance was no different and was welcomed acknowledgement of my creative mini vacation from life.

I do have to confess that the insides are decoupaged papers, and the outside circular patterns were stencils that I then repainted over to cleanup edges. I could have done them manually, but it would have taken even more time to sketch out the designs and paint them completely from scratch. It’s something that I chose not to rush, knowing it was my only chance to complete the project anytime soon. Besides that I love the look of the metallic paints, and I’m super  grateful that I had beautiful custom altar boxes for the two of us by Yule. They’re perfectly appropriate.

The only little one left, that I need to find at least one gift for, is Ian. In theory that’s the easy one.

As much as I’d love to get gaggles of goodies, I simply can’t bear to cram anything else into our current situation. So gifts will wait for the New Year and a new home (& I foresee new organizational furniture first too). Besides I still want to get those beds I’ve had my eye on for ages. We’re all over sharing bed space with a tossing, turning toddler.

Beyond that, I got to play Santa for a friend that needed the emotional relief, if not the actual financial relief. I had great fun, and it felt really good to do something significantly good  for someone else. I’m very appreciative of that and hope that my future holds the ability to do a lot more of that.

Otherwise, I just keep trucking. Day after day, work and more work. I’ve worked 32 out of the last 35 days, and the only 2 days off in the near future are Christmas Day  and January 2nd. This schedule is already old, but until the divine manifests whatever it’s been trying to tell me about, it’s pretty much my only option.

 I’m grateful for the work and the income it provides, but I’ve had many conversations with thin air about how it’s not really my ideal, far from it in fact. 

I really hope that whatever is gestating in the ethers brings relief and moves me much closer to my ideal. I’m hoping the messages I’m getting about Valentine’s Day time frame (including my birthday) are clues of that something good, but I simply don’t know. Just that February is important somehow. Looking forward to better days.

Tis the season. 

Happy holidays everyone.

Tis the season for busy bustle, and it’s no different for us. As if we haven’t already been insanely busy. 

We moved into the 3rd house for heat, & 3 weeks later we’re still cleaning & pulling belongings from the shell of our house to be.

All of my houseplants froze. I’ll end up having a small “plant funeral” when the proverbial dust settles.

We’ve had the wood stove fired up for a while now,  and I must say I love it. There’s nothing like having a fire to watch,  and the heat is amazing.  We’ve now gotten the house  so warm that we were getting dehydrated (even with kettles of water on top) & overheated ourselves. I’ve opened windows on 3 occasions to help cool down. 

There is a little bit of a learning curve. I’m the best at restarting it in the morning without filling the house with smoke, but by no means perfect. We’ve also learned a lot about hard vs. soft woods, & how to stack the fire to last overnight.  We’ve had a few mornings where we woke up cold  because of improper fire building & failing to tend in the middle of the night.  Though even those somewhat cold mornings are no comparison to space heaters with no insulation.  I’ll take the failed fire any day!

Since we’re  using the wood stove,  we’re using wood.  Apparently, we didn’t cut much wood to the proper size, so Nathan’s been a veritable lumber jack cutting  wood most of several days now.  Luckily our work last summer means that we have plenty to cut.

Cats are not only enjoying the heat,  but they are getting along great. It’s so much fun watching them playing,  & every time I sit the 3 young ones come sit on me & cuddle.  I told Nathan that it’s ok I’m not pregnant,  I had a litter of kittens. Ha!

No run in’s with momma cougar,  but I did have a dream I’ll share in another post. It was pretty funny. 

This house isn’t pretty either,  & has it’s own share of needing fixed,  but I think I’ve managed to make it feel more like home.  Nathan says I’ve raised the vibrations of it as home by several notches. 

Finally,  right now I’m  headed (car-pooling) to the final practice  for the community choir & orchestra- of which I was begged to join. The 4th instrument I learned growing up was Oboe, and they needed one. 

 Our  Holiday performance is Saturday, and I’m torn because I am enjoying playing music again, but this has been way more stressful than I’d like.  Fitting it into my schedule was hard enough,  but car-pooling hiccups meant I was late more often than on time – something the director didn’t take well to. I became the veritable whipping boy & anything that was wrong with intonation was blamed on me.  Now I’m essentially biting a hole in my lip to try & play as sharp as everyone else.  

You see when many instruments warm up they tend to gravitate toward being sharp,  Oboe definitely gravitates toward flat. Hence the dissonance. 

I was playing directly into my digital tuner so I knew that I was hitting notes mostly on pitch, but even on pitch  against a quarter step sharp sounds horrible. 

 So, he rudely took me off of a part 2 practices ago.  The removal only partly bothered me in and of itself.  It was how he rudely did it in front of everyone that really upset me. 

Now I find myself playing tentatively or not at all. What was supposed to be a fun revival of concert hall music,  now has become me trying to decide if I even want to show up for the performance. 

Sadly,  my responsible ass will show up and play even if I feel like a stupid out of tune schmuck. I will just have to try to not let it bother me.

Maybe my wonderful love interest will keep distracting me with his great conversations- I know Nathan misses him as much as I do. It’s wonderful to have such a supportive husband.