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broodings from the burrow

December 27, 2012

family, friends, and nearly done
posted by soe 11:00 pm

It’s the final Thursday of the year. Hard to believe, eh? Or maybe not. Either way, I offer to you three beautiful things from the past week:

1. It has been good to spend time with my folks and with my grandmother, even if I spent some of it distracted by Cybils work and by Christmas shopping. Being far away is stressful and so I appreciate even just getting to be in the same house with them.

2. The holidays are for reconnecting. And we have. In the past week, we talked to a college friend who returned home to the Philippines to live and work. We usually get a letter each Christmas, so it was especially wonderful to hear his voice. I also spent a couple hours on the phone with my college roommate, who caught me up on what’s been going on in her life and with those folks she’s in closer contact with than I am. Rudi and I had brunch with another college friend, whom we hadn’t seen in a couple years. She seems to be doing well, which was reassuring to see. (And we hope to see her again next month when she and some of her students visit D.C. for the inauguration.) And, today, Karen opened her home to me for a few hours so we could visit and so I could deliver some Christmas presents to her and her kids.

3. My Cybils work is inches away from being complete. I am sworn to secrecy until the shortlist appears on Jan. 1, but I will say that it has been an enormous amount of work and I am proud of the role I’ve played. And I’m really excited to be done with it all and to get back to books of my own choosing and my knitting and my bed.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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winter storm
posted by soe 1:46 am

Here in Connecticut, as in many parts of the U.S. recently, we’re in the midst of a winter storm. It’s my first of the season.

Nearly half a foot of snow fell earlier this evening, leaving a white blanket across my parents’ yard and an icing of white on the pines out back. It was beautiful to observe out the kitchen window, particular with the glow of Christmas lights on various shrubs and trees in the yard peeping out from beneath the white coverlet.

Not long after midnight, the snow stopped, but the wind picked up, blowing over my parents’ ridge like a train (or a hurricane). The sound is surprisingly ceaseless, like a jet doing constant loops over the house. Although periodically I can hear the gusts roar down the bank and break against the house, most of the winds must be high up. Between gusts, the trees are not waving the way I’d expected them to be given the noise.

I hope we keep power, but if there’s no three beautiful things post later today, you’ll know why.

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December 25, 2012

happy holidays!
posted by soe 11:48 pm

Merry Christmas! (And expansive wishes for a wonderful day and year to all, regardless of your personal holiday affiliations and preferences!)

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December 20, 2012

year-end, returned, and prequel
posted by soe 11:23 pm

There are five days left until Christmas. This is not comforting. So, quickly, so I can get back to prepping and reading, here are three beautiful things from my past week:

1. I am done with work for 2012. My auto replies tell people I will get back to them in a whole different year.

2. I return three grocery bags (nearly 50 copies) of young adult books to the D.C. and Arlington County libraries. I am remarkably grateful to both library systems for helping me procure the vast majority of the Cybils titles nominated, but was even more grateful to clear them out of our house.

3. We watch The Hobbit on opening day and all five of us enjoy it. No, the 3D was unnecessary. Yes, it was longer than it needed to be. Did any of that matter? No.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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December 16, 2012

today’s to-do
posted by soe 2:10 pm
  • Attend Sarah’s party (already in progress)
  • Shop on Capitol Hill (en route to said party)
  • Finish two books
  • Narrow my Cybils shortlist (painful!)
  • Phone home
  • Write half our Christmas cards (with Rudi’s assistance)
  • Listen to a Christmas cd (possibly while writing cards)
  • Get enough sleep so I don’t doze off during jury duty tomorrow

Already done:

  • Laundry
  • Purchase and put away the farmers market bounty
  • Eat breakfast (Yes, at 1:30. Call it a snack if it makes you feel better)
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December 13, 2012

reading time, themed, and renovations
posted by soe 11:38 pm

One more sleep ’til The Hobbit! (Not that I’m excited or anything…)

It seems like my life lately is all Cybils, Cybils, Christmas, Cybils, but in between there have been other good things. Here are three beautiful things from the past week:

1. Sarah invites my book out for pizza and me to join it. Rudi and I sit in the coffeehouse next to Pete’s and read while we wait. You know a friend is a good one if they understand when you have to read through your meals.

2. Muppets-themed Christmas underwear. (Related: Target has underoos for women!)

3. Our landlord did some needed renovations to our bathroom. Our fan no longer screams like an injured banshee when you flip the light switch on (the two are tied together), and the shower faucet no longer drips. The shower taps being replaced has the added benefit of improved temperature control.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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