Season’s Greetings One and All!

I’ve been mostly absent from my favourite blogs, even more absent than usual from Facebook and other social media platforms and playing catch-up in my daily life for a few weeks or so – did you notice?

Sometimes it just seems that outside influences and the vagaries of life simply get together and decide to invade what is otherwise a peaceful and well modulated existence.  But let’s be honest.  It all started with not paying attention…….

I was hurrying.  My mind already several tasks ahead of where my feet were going and in that unmindful state I tripped over the leg of my easel – you know that one sitting just to the left of the doorway encumbered with the 140cm wide, still unfinished painting

hdr

Hurrying past, I tripped, I lurched into the door of the art room at such speed I bounced off it and hit the opposite side of the doorway.  Bang, bang!  I knew I was going down and I knew I was going down hard.  You know how time slows at these moments and everything is really clear and you have time to think things through.  I’d whacked my left arm really hard and now I knew I was going to do the same to my right.  Don’t break, please don’t break.  I was alone.  My daughter had just left town visiting her sister for a few days.  My neighbours were away for the weekend.  Don’t break anything.  Don’t break anything……  I went down full force onto my right leg as I spun through the doorway and crashed my head into the opposite wall.  It’s only a little house – there’s no wide expanses here to topple gracefully into and rise again unharmed.

I lay face down on the floor trying to figure out which bits hurt and could I move them.  Siddy was delighted.  He bounced around me making quick darts in and dancing back flapping one paw in the air.  A lovely new game.  “No!”  I said.  He darted and bounced some more.  “Stop!” I cried.  He smiled at me and bounced some more.  “You’re no (beeped) Lassie!”  I snarled as I tried to roll over in the awkward space and find some way of sitting up.  My head hurt.  My arm hurt.  My leg really hurt.  Eventually I gathered myself from doorway and walls and decided nothing was broken.  Sitting up having become impossible I pushed myself up from the floor in a complex series of steps that kept head, arm and leg attached to body sufficiently for me to crawl – yes crawl – into a slightly larger open space where I felt the need to have a wee lie down for a few minutes.  By this time the puppy had ceased his invitation to play and, having watched this new activity with some interest, bustled off and returned with his favourite soft toy.  I was invited to partake in a game of fetch which I again declined reminding him that he had a long way to go to catch up with the rescuing abilities of Lassie.   He wasn’t bothered.

Eventually I got myself up and inspected.  Nothing was broken, there was no blood.  I was shaken and sore and felt just a tad ridiculous I decided.  Thank heavens no-one was here to witness that little display of indignity!  I felt so fortunate I played a short round of victory fetch with the pup while I swallowed arnica pillules for shock and rubbed arnica cream onto the sore bits.

I was however pulled up sharply from my rushing about and forced to spend the next few days resting up as the bruises slowly came out and the aches and pains settled down.  A trip to the chiropractor graunched the bones back into their proper  places and we were getting back into normal life when the swollen left leg became too painful to walk on and I knew I’d gotten myself a blood clot –  a ‘Deep Vein Thrombosis’ a thing that has always made my GP’s panic given the family history.   A quick call to my homeopath and I was in her rooms and we were sorting a plan to fix that little sucker.  It’s the first time I’ve refused to consider allopathic care for a blood clot – I’m not a fan of warfarin or hospitals and that is the usual route when I get a DVT.  I’m happy to report that within three days the leg was completely restored to health and I was striding out again.  No side effects, except perhaps for a rather grumpy mood for several days.  I used the time to work on getting as many Christmas cards made as I could manage and my Sewchet organised ‘Secret Santa’ parcel completed, wrapped up and ready for sending.  It includes this delicious bamboo-cotton crochet wrap

hdr

 

With just six cards still to make I ran out of time.  My youngest daughter, returned from visiting her sister and back at work, took her turn at a nasty fall and not being as fortunate as me, was outside in the middle of the night, looking up not down and tripped over a very high speed bump in a narrow University back lot lane, broke her leg in two places and fractured the ankle – all on the same leg.

I took this photo when I finally found her.  She hasn’t slept for close to 36 hours except for the induced sleep of the operating table………  She’s on a morphine drip, still feeling the pain and just wants to go home…….

hdr

What followed was three nightmarish days in a less than happy hospital environment during which she had surgery and post-operative recovery followed by one full day of black comedy waiting for the hospital to organise it’s bits of paper and allow her to leave.  From 9 am until 5.30 pm she practised patiently waiting while being told it would ‘just be another half hour, we just need to……’    Siddy and I practised patiently waiting less effectively at her home.  But eventually we were rewarded and so great was poor Siddy’s joy at seeing his second-favourite person in the entire world that he fell off the bedroom window sill where he was waiting and found himself jammed down the side of a bed and wall with no room to move.  Extricated he rushed off to continue his ecstatic over-the-top greeting ritual as an exhausted Danella was carefully maneuvered from car to couch by her caring friends.   One half of that pair of friends, Karen, stayed that night which was wonderful and allowed me to go home and recuperate too.

A day later and we were all immensely grateful when my eldest daughter dropped her entire life and came flying down to be with her sister for the next six days.  Having another person on hand as we nutted out ways to make doing the most mundane activities possible for a person in a plaster half cast, still in shock and a lot of pain was invaluable.  Joanna and I role played the showering scenario and so found a way to meet every possible need.  We tried it out on the patient and finding it all went rather well, her mother, sister and Siddy, stood around watching carefully as she soaped herself and laughed uproariously as she remarked morosely on the fact that all privacy and dignity was now a thing of the past.

Joanna companioned, cooked, sorted and tidied and even put up the Christmas tree for her sister before returning to her abandoned partner and job and leaving us better off and very grateful for her special presence.

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, dog

As I drove back home after delivering Jo to the airport my phone was tinging with constant messages.  I discovered that my youngest brother had died suddenly and unexpectedly following a massive heart attack.  It is a very private devastation and remembering that followed that news.

Image may contain: one or more people

My remaining sibling, who lives in Australia, and I connected on a deep level later that day.  I am filled with affection and pride for both my brothers, and especially my remaining brother Colin.  We have overcome!

*****************************************************

Let’s fast-forward another week and return to Danella who is doing well.  She now sports a lovely purple fibreglass leg brace and has returned to her usual positive and sunny self, dealing with her changed circumstances with grace and dignity and using her incredible ability to nut out challenges and problems and come up with ingenious solutions.  Her home is organised and everything she needs has a place.   Her workplace, Otago University has been incredible.  Danella’s boss is the University Proctor and I can’t speak too highly of him.  Help and assistance has been put in place at so many levels, making both her life, and therefore mine, so much easier to cope with.   We are grateful!

Image may contain: one or more people, christmas tree, plant, tree, indoor and outdoor

Siddy and I visit every day.  While he bathes her in love and happiness I potter about and clean and tidy and prepare nutritious smoothies.  Yesterday we got her down the steps and out into her courtyard garden where we spent a happy couple of hours weeding, dead heading and tidying up.  Today the bird feeders, neglected for a week, were all refilled, calling the birds back into her garden.

The final half dozen cards never did get made.  It might have to be e-cards again this year……. or this……….

Xmas6

It’s dreadfully true, he’s no Lassie.  But Sid-Arthur has his own unique ability to spread happiness and smiles and pure love.  In case I don’t make it back before – Season’s Greetings, Happy Holidays, Blessed Hanukkah and Merry Christmas Y’all  ❤

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

Advertisements

Summertime Christmas

 

Season’s Greetings Y’all!

Happy Christmas; Mid-Summer; Mid-Winter; Ramadan; Hanukkah; Kwanzaa ~ 

Whatever you celebrate may your days be blessed with your loved ones around you

**************

The Christmas Light Catchers were all finally sent off on Monday 7th December.  The nice lady at the post office assured me I was far too late in my posting habits to make the Christmas delivery deadline for those of you across the oceans, but I believe in miracles and it turns out there has been  a number of them – were you one of them?

I feel like my Celebration season got off to an excellent start this year with that communal giveaway and it has caused me to become quite ‘merry and bright’ about the whole thing – which is not something I have utterly given myself up to in the past few years.

I’ve been fortunate to experience Christmas in both hemispheres and have found pleasure and pain in both seasons.  As a child I had a feeling of deep disconnection between the presented pictures and the reality of our global situation – which simply added to my general discombobulation with the family dysfunction which was the reality of my young life.

In the blinding heat of mid summer we were all treated to displays of fake snow scattered about shop window settings and cards featuring pretty women in long gowns trimmed with fur, their hands buried in muffs and snow brushing their pink cheeks; or robins on bare branches white with more snow….  Carols and popular songs tinkled along merrily in the background and we all sang along with them – we were dreaming of a white Christmas, hearing sleigh bells jingling, and decking the halls with boughs of holly.  We lit the lights on the Christmas trees but never got to see their glow because it was always light while we were up.  There was no waiting for the return of the sun because it was always here and always bright.  [Years later my own children, excited out of their trees by the coming event, would wake us up at three o’clock in the morning to tell us Santa had been and the birds were singing.  Stockings were introduced to the end of their beds with enough goodies to keep them quiet for at least another half hour…….]

A heavy, roasted Christmas dinner was often cooked amid faces red and sweating and eaten in the same manner while we kids just wanted to escape the heat and dive back into the ocean or river.

We had few local traditions, everything had been imported from the Northern Hemisphere by the settlers who came to make new and better lives yet continued to adhere faithfully to the way things were done ‘Back Home’ despite all  seasonal disadvantages.

As a young mother I set about making sure my children did not experience the same sense of disconnection with the festival and over the years built up a new set of traditions and displays that met our seasonal and cultural mores and addressed my growing connection with a spiritual reality that had nothing to do with religion or culture and everything to do with the need for me to unleash the ability to understand what unconditional love is and to be able to live in it on a daily and practical basis.

Christmas became the festival where I practised best.

We had wonderful Christmases and in their own lives, my girls have carried on the traditions that were begun in their childhoods.

This year we get to have one of our special Christmases.  Just the three of us make up our small immediate family and we get to spend a week together this year.  We are tight.  We are devoted and adoring and just a little awed by each other.  Not being of a religious bent, but bearing strong spiritual connections with the message of the season we will celebrate our ability to love, to share, to give and to shine.  The summer sun is bright and warm and we let it be our inspiration.

Somewhere the decision was made to make this a Christmas to remember.

So for the first time in this tiny house, a tree arrived.  It got itself decorated with baubles, bells, flowers, birds and butterflies – in our favourite colours of course.

Xmas Tree 2015

And placed stage centre especially for Orlando’s enjoyment and contentment

O under tree Dec 15

I crocheted that tree skirt in one frantic 14 hour period, as big as I could get it in the time allowed and in between my doing of ordinary daily activities ……  After it is finished with this year I shall double it in size in a leisurely fashion.

The tiny courtyard is full of flowers and little bits of bling.  The chairs have comfy cushions and there are places for wine glasses and plates of food

Tiny Courtyard pizap

The front entrance welcomes with bells and bling, cats and a green nodding doggie and even more flowers

front2 dec15

Dec Front pizap

The hand made gifts are [finally] finished and being wrapped – this is the last of them

presents pizap

The Secret Recipe Cold Christmas Pudding is made and maturing

xmaspud1 2015

And Siddy is ready for GO! (His favourite aunty Jo arrives in two more sleeps and our Christmas begins!)

Xmas6

And I have my Christmas hair on

Pink Hair Dec 15

[I’m transitioning people, from coloured hair to cheveux au-naturale – the time has come – as the Walrus once so famously said.  And why not have a little fun along the way?]

This is my last post for the year, thanks for being with me through this fabulous and eventful twelve months.  Thanks for your encouragement and support and friendship.  And thank you for coming by again today, I love that you did!