Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Winter Routine

Holiday time has finally arrived in my home! While so many around us were calling itChristmas time right after Thanksgiving, my family needed a little more time to adjust. Feeling the arctic blast that hit the westcoast a week or so ago helped us get into the mood. It was a struggle to get my oldest engaged with our annual family tradition of finding and cutting a tree for the living room, but after a good emotional explosion followed by a cool down session and some healing dialogue, we were able to pull it together and have a fairly smooth and genuine family afternoon.
Now I am on to preparing some little gifts that need to mailed out. In the front of the top photo is a set of felt crowns for my new niece and three year old nephew. I may have already missed the deadline for posting to the Philippines, oh well.

My new typical daily routine is starting to take shape now that all three children are off to school. I wake a bit before 7 to enjoy a bit of coffee with my spouse and then get to work cooking breakfast (usually eggs, sometimes pancakes) and helping with lunches (I make the sandwiches). My darling daughter is now able to drive herself to school! So it is just the two boys I must then shuttle off to be on time when the bell rings. Next I walk the dog, feed the dog, feed the chickens, feed the cats, and generally do the "pet rounds". By now it is usually 9am. Clean-up time. I get the kitchen mess cleaned up, sweep or vacuum up the huge quantity of dog hair, garden dirt and crumbs that has accumulated since the previous day and start a load of laundry. At this point, around 10am, if the house is not in some sort of bigger disaster, I take some time to check email, do paperwork and make phone calls. If I am lucky, I get to do some crafty thing for an hour or so before some more mundane tasks beckon. I like to get the shopping and other errands taken care of before I go pick everyone up beginning at 2:30, but I like to time it just right so I get the maximum time by myself in the house! After all these years with constant company (young children at home, husband working from home and then homeschooling kids) I must say that solitude is such a treat! Once I do pick up the boys and daughter is some or else off with the tutor or at her volunteer job (she's got college applications on her horizon), I help with homework, walk the dog, feed the dog, feed the cats, feed the chickens and start to get ready to feed the humans dinner. Then it is cleaning up again, reading books to the youngest one (such a nice tradition, I will be sad when he no longer wants to be read to), and off to bed.

So when I review my own schedule I wonder how I managed before I had this "extra" time. Now that I have a routine, I also notice how often things are out of the ordinary. There seems to be always some child or some pet who is not feeling well and this requires lots of extra attention and fussing and sometimes trips to the doctor or vet. The other day it was actually me who needed the attention. I was walking the dog in the afternoon and the dog wander
ed off to check out the neighbors compost heap. I spotted a different neighbors new cat (a youngster and very cute and sweet) and took the opportunity to pet and pick up the little kitty. This was dumb because my dog then came bounding out of the woods, all excited to say hello to kitty as well. The cat freaked out and scratched me, hooking my lip deeply as it leaped away. I felt
the cut and the blood and immediately went into a mild panic (I must admit that first thing I though of was the scar - such vanity!). I cleaned up and headed to the urgent care. No stitches
but an ugly fat lip with a big red scratch!

When my husband first saw it he was so sweet, assuring me that it was not that bad and reminding my of my herbal knowledge. Ah yes, I do have a good relationship with many good skin herbs. I have been doing warm compresses with plantain and calendula and massaging arnica oil and vitamin E. No signs of infection. I think it will all be ok! I will say that I did not cook dinner on the night of the big scratch! We had take out.