Sunday, December 13, 2009

"Gaudete in Domino semper: interum dico, gaudete."

Gaudete Sunday is here - already! I wore pink to Mass, in the form of a pink headscarf, wrapped around my head and twisted in front. It is so thrilling to dress in accordance with the daysI felt fully alive with the joy of the day - and so much a part of the Liturgy; as though I'd fallen into it and, instead of merely participating, I was swimming in it - swallowing whole mouthfuls, the way we do in the ocean, when a huge wave hits.

After Mass we had friends over for brunch. It is so much easier to prepare a brunch now that we attend the earlier Liturgy. I have a whole two hours of time in which to clean, chop, bake, and boil.

Now the snow is falling in fast little flakes, making the night bright with reflected light. I love snowy nights when we are at home and can just sit and watch the falling snow gather all around us. Our lights are dim inside to let the glow warm our windows. We have coffee, a warm bed, and so many blessings. How could we not rejoice?

Saturday, December 12, 2009

"I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape - the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show."
~Andrew Wyeth

December has been hurrying along - unnecessarily quickly in my opinion. We watched the first snowstorm of the season cover our town with deep white drifts, and now we sit in the warm, blue-walled middle room, listening to the creak of the kiln as it rises to temperature. The days are so short now, I'm adjusting to lamplight and early nights.

I feel more productive this winter -after the distraction of autumn skies. My pots are everywhere - in the kiln, on the floor, on the wheel - and all across the country as well. I'm happy to see them go - these little bits of my soul - in the hopes that they brighten lives out in the world.

Advent is such a beautiful season - amazing that we are at it's third Sunday already! I think I have not appreciated it as much as I would like this year, but I'm sure that every year is the same. We never look back and say "Ah, that was the year I did everything right!"

My husband and I have been reading "The Book of Hours" this Advent, not intentionally, but because we were drawn to the beauty of the words this season. It is a wintery book of poems, I feel, and a book of hopeful longing.

Blessed Advent to you all!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

"Perhaps I am a bear, or some hibernating animal underneath, for the instinct to be half asleep all winter long is so strong in me."
~Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Today the weather is "seasonal," meaning that the lovely blustery days we've been having are gone - in their place are cold, dark days, frozen puddles, and the smell of winter. Each season has a scent of its own - winter's scent is all around us today - light and cold, the scent of bright stars and soft snow and frozen things. If seasons were wines, winter would be dry and white, with hints of citrus and a crisp finish.

I always eat an abundance of oranges in winter. The fresh, living taste drives away the darkness in the long evenings, and helps the short days last. I've discovered a recipe for an Orange Salad, which I love, and which can be altered when some of the ingredients aren't avaliable:

4 peeled Oranges
3 shredded Carrots
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 tablespoon Orange Flower Water
1/4 cup Pomegranate Seeds
1/4 cup chopped Fresh Mint Leaves

Anything except the oranges, mint, and cinnamon can be left out if neccessary. All mixed together it looks as beautiful as it tastes.