Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


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Sunday, December 21, 2003  

Well. I didn't mean to be so revealing yesterday nor so burdensome. It still feels good to have put thoughts onto virtual paper. So good, in fact, I'm not yet ready to erase them. I can re-read what I have written and ask myself it that is how I really feel, why I do what I do, who I am? That, of course, my dears, is the ENFP forever questing, forever asking why we exist at all, anyway. And there is that other question: Why do I blog? And what are my responsibilities as a Blogger? How much is too much - information? detail? When does it become gossip or betrayal or whining? But truly, I am not suffering - merely living. I thank those of you who felt the urge to respond and I appreciate that gift of lightening a load I wasn't altogether aware I was carrying. Trash pick-up is tomorrow.

Eh. Well. Self-pondering can be a good thing for occupying a mind in a gloomy state, while cleaning house - and that was yesterday. Today is new and I am back at Tara anyway, so I can think about other things. Better things. Like: Will I finish the Christmas scarf? (yes) the Christmas socks? (doubt it) and is there time to order the rib roast? (probably) and who is left on the list to call about the party on the 27th? (let's let BD do it)

Okay - that takes care of the philosophy of today. Or at least, half of today, since the other half will be spent among other people in other houses. Part of the rush yesterday was to get the Christmas tree up and decorated. This is almost always my job and my delight - for BD has his own issues when it comes to holiday rituals. I like a BIG tree - that is in the way all the time and holds every ornament we've ever collected. Last year we cut a very small tree and I was dissatisfied with it all season. This year we picked a compromise size tree - about 8 feet tall and not too full but rather beautifully proportioned. Our trees are spruce pines taken from cutover areas, either beneath power lines or along White Oak Swamp - which was the woodlot each of the farms down here got a portion of. Only Melvin Clark's farm actually boarders it, and John Allen's, I suppose, since the road divides those two properties. LD lives at John Allen's (funny how a place retains a name long after the owner dies and the property's sold).

Three types of pines grow around here, if you don't count the White Pines that people grow as screens. The Rosemary pine, which is what people call the original pine found in these parts, is fairly rare and when found, is already quite a substantial tree. The Loblolly is the crop tree grown for either lumber or pulp, usually depending on when it's cut. The spruce is the volunteer that pops up when a piece of timberland has been cut. It's a short needle pine with many branches - if it grows in the sun. It is almost always crowded together with other things leaping out of newly sun-warmed soil, and so the individuals tend to have branches only on the side that gets sunlight. It's not till they have some height on them that they thicken up.

We put our tree in the corner, though, and a one-sided tree is just what we are looking for - something that has had plenty of sunshine on one side, with thick branching and lots of green. Of course, these are wild-grown trees so there are always gaps in them. For years I bit my lip and accepted the fact that I would never have a perfect symmetrical tree with a theme to its decorations. Now I'm secretly pleased that nobody has a Christmas tree quite like this - with as many as 10 balls on any given branch, some of which dangle from great long ribbons, filling the inevitable gaps. It's so full of toys that little kids love to visit and play with it. Most adults think it's weird looking - but that is because they look at too many magazines. And the folk with laughter in their eyes appreciate its unique appearance.

Magnificent ERIC of Blogger Help Desk told me (within an hour or so of my email) that the problem with my apostrophes and quotation marks comes from writing my post on MSWord, which BD has set to produce curlyquotes. Blogger reads them as ASCII symbols. Since I can't spell worth a hoot, I have to use a wp program and since BD writes for a living, it would be WoeUntoMe if I forgot to change the flat quotes back to curlyquotes, always assuming I could figure out how to make the change in the first place, an added chore has been tacked onto this activity. But at least I know what the problem is and a fiddly-bits task for these few paragraphs isn't all that onerous.

Ahh - Is that a blue cashmerino scarf I hear calling me. I must be off, then. Adieu mes amis.

posted by Bess | 7:24 AM