Monday, December 27, 2010

Break Week

Its that week between Christmas and New Years, and we are all taking a break from the routine. We were so blessed this holiday with abundant presents, excellent food, good health, and getting to see so many friends and family. Truly, I will try not to complain because I have no right to do so. The sad news is that I did lose another family member...this time to old age. Jeanne was my oldest cousin, my grandmother's best friend when they were girls, and she had turned 90 this year. She still lived in her own home, although was considering that she would have to stop and go into assisted living soon. She was still active in her church. She was still mentally acute and enjoying life right up to her last day. My mom had just visited her the week before, and then she is gone. All of these passings this last year have made me wonder about what constitutes a 'good death'. I know we all fear it, and fear the pain, and the loss for ourselves and for our family. Is it better to know, and have time to say your goodbyes, or is it better to go fast, and not suffer? It seems both have their merits, and down-sides. I do know that Jeanne was my shining example of how I wanted to be and live my life when I am old. She was engaged and interested in life, she was active and kept her body strong, she knew herself well and gave herself what she needed, and she was always such a positive, upbeat person. I can strive to be the same!
Anyway, break week, that week where you may still overindulge because its not yet the new year, and there are still Christmas cookies around the house, but you know you really shouldn't because everything you stuff in your mouth will have to come out in sweat and deprivation later. That week where you have to find places to store your new stuff, and you look around and see that you have too much stuff, and that you must start getting rid of some of your stuff, and you want to help those who are in need, so you try to donate as much as stuff as you can, but can't help feeling how its such a waste of money. The week where you watch too much television because you haven't had time to do that in the previous two months and realize that you haven't missed much, or worse, that you really have missed it a lot, but don't foresee being free to indulge much in the future. That week you are off from work and school and could be traveling, but where would you go?!? Unless you ski, and even then its likely crowded. Even Florida is cold this week, so we are staying home!
I am cleaning. One of my presents is a hand held steam cleaner. I am trying to clean the grout of my tile floor. Some areas are clean, some are filthy. My steamer produces abundant steam! However, it does not produce abundant cleaning without some scrubbing and work on my part. So I don't know if its not working great, or if my expectations need to be a little bit lower. I got a Kobo, and I am donating books to the library. I still have way too many books, many of them unread. I got a waterpik oral cleaner and it is Awesome! And our girl likes using it too, which is great because teeth-brushing has become a point of contention in our household, and now it doesn't have to be. I got some shelving units from Ikea to store and neatly display stuff that we want to be available, such as the new kids' pottery wheel, but not out on a counter- or table-top all the time. I still need to get rid of some things, create a work-space on my table, and store away my supplies for other projects (until time/space permits), but I am on my way. I am still knitting old kitty a sweater. Its almost done, but I am not sure how well it will fit - that is, will he be able to escape from it or will he be crippled by it. Its such a narrow margin between those two extremes for cats.
Next week we go back to work, back to school, back to routine.