Now that we’re a week into December, I hope that you’re finding your own path here with the “December delights.” It’s really an example of “seek and ye shall find” in action – what we look for is very often what we find, so looking for the delightful things around us generally means that we find them more often.
For example, today I was working on one of my favorite self-care techniques – watercolor painting. When I went to the kitchen to rinse out my brushes. I noticed a car in my driveway and was a little confused. (Face it, 2020 is not a year that is seeing a multitude of carolers going door-to-door, and it was only late morning.) Turns out a lady who attends the same church as I do was delivering Christmas cards – members of the congregation dropped them off at the church, some kind people sorted them into stacks and I now have a lovely bag full of cards to open and be reminded that people care about me. If that isn’t delightful, I don’t know what is! I was so excited I found a length of wired ribbon in one of the Christmas boxes and hung it along a doorway to decorate with the cards – festive, indeed!
The winter holidays – regardless of which one (or ones!) you celebrate – all tend to have giving as a central tenet. So add applesauce to the box for the Reverse Advent Calendar you’re building.
Good food is at the heart of today’s “Diva drill” – some friends gave us a frozen chicken (such a lovely First World problem to have too much food for your freezer!) so I prepared a simple roast chicken over chopped vegetables. Everything cooks in a single pan, there will be leftovers for days (it was a big chicken!), and it seems celebratory. As far as recipes go, there are many, many versions of roast chicken – try here or here for starters. Everyone likes their own version, whether that features lemon, garlic, or your own special spice rub.
I think I’ll use the china – this is also a “Diva drill” – USE THE GOOD STUFF! Serve a weeknight dinner on the china. Wear your diamond stud earrings on a rainy Tuesday when you don’t plan to go further than the grocery store. Splurge on a French press coffee instead of instant, freeze-dried nonsense that you only drink to save three minutes. Take care of yourself so you can take care of others – that’s our goal here.
From the bookshelf today, I chose an old favorite – Diane Ackerman’s A Natural History of the Senses. Oh, how I love this book! It’s a celebration of our senses – how they operate, yes, but also a hymn to the glories that surround us that our senses inform us about. (Also with a fascinating chapter on synesthesia, a condition in which our senses overlap. We’re all born with this, but for most of us, our sense quickly solidify, but some people literally hear colors or taste sound. Weird, but another example of how amazing humans are.)
In holiday decorating news, I can report that, in addition to planning to put up all the incredible cards we received today, the Christmas tree is up as are the porch lights and the Moravian star. We’ll decorate the tree after the cats have had a day to get used to the idea, but already the house looks quite fetching from the road!
See you tomorrow!