A little bit of Christmas joy…maybe.

Sorry I suck so much at blogging, blog. And sorry, followers who are ostensibly interested in what I have to say, for not saying anything.

It is what it is.

I can’t believe we are only two days away from Christmas. What I can believe, though, is that I’m hardly looking forward to it. Maybe I should change my name to Scrooge…

Okay, maybe that’s overstating the point a bit. I am excited, to spend time with our families and to share the gifts that we painstakingly picked out from suggestions and inspirations, which shall remain nameless of course (no peeking!).

I am simultaneously pleased, sad, and humbled at our choice of charitable contribution this year: helping a young college student who lost her mother just this Thanksgiving. I’m pleased because I know we are having a direct and positive impact; sad because I can only imagine how it would feel to go through Christmas without one of the most important people in my life; and humbled because this is the first year that we followed through with our plan to give something back. It certainly won’t be the last, however.

Tonight we’re going to the airport to pick up my cousin, whom I haven’t seen in…God, I don’t even know how many years it’s been. So much time has been lost, and even now I keep glancing at the clock and counting down hours and minutes until that trip. This reunion will truly be the greatest holiday gift for our family.

My wish for this holiday is that we find some time for silence. Between all of the driving hither and yon, splitting meals and present time and everything else that is going on, I just want a few quiet moments to sit back and reflect on what has come, gone, and changed forever in the last year of our lives. I want to stop all of the noise and listen to my inner voice, the one that remembers who I am outside of school and work and the constant “go-go-go”, and let her remind me where I’m going.

Most of all, I want it to be 60 degrees and sunny on Christmas.

Monday musing

A few reflections from this weekend:

Farmers’ markets should be mandated by law in every community. Mom and I went out at 8 am on Saturday to the Willoughby Farmers’ Market (conveniently, run by our cousin) and oh. my. goodness what a difference fresh produce makes. I walked out with bags of fruits and vegetables — fresh strawberries, nectarines, delicious tomatoes and a wealth of other treasures — for less than I would spend on the strawberries alone at a big box grocer. To be fair, Giant Eagle had mango 10 for $10 and the farmers’ market had none, but it makes me feel so much better to buy locally when I can.

I will never outgrow retail therapy, or procrastination, especially when I can have both at the same time. The initial game plan for Saturday was market, then back to Mom’s to help her pack for Moving Day (five more days!), then out to lunch somewhere and home to meet Brian. Well, buying food tends to make one hungry, so lunch became breakfast and when I mentioned that Fashion Bug was having a sale…well, let’s just say like mother, like daughter. We both walked out with (at least) two new outfits, plus some shoes and jewelry on my end, and I feel like I have a bright new outlook on the summer (not to mention, motivation to kick into healthy mode so I can get more new clothes!)

If you dress for 80-degree weather, it will rain. I wore one of the above-mentioned new FB outfits to our family picnic yesterday afternoon and it was a great success. Somewhat less successful was the trek to Quaker Steak for Fathers’ Day dinner…in the cold, pouring rain…wearing a white tank and flip flops. MIL saved the day with a coordinating rain jacket, though, and all was well.

I really…really…love my life. There have been several decision points in the last few years that have drastically altered where I am versus where I could have gone, and as I’ve contemplated the real consequences of our engagement and what that means for where we’re going I’ve had to confront those decisions head-on. There are some people in the world who would try to shame those like me who hit a snag in their grand life plan or who at one point faced more questions than answers, because obviously if you don’t keep your little train rumbling down the track at a constant clip then somehow you’re failing.

The thing is, though, I don’t want to be that person who marches in lockstep from Goal A to Goal B and only measures the worth of my life by what I’ve “accomplished”, what I “have” or how little time it took me to get there. I did that and those years passed by in a blur — I didn’t even really celebrate my college graduation, it was so surreal — and the things that I have picked up through my shortcomings and slip-ups are worth more than anything. I won’t lie and pretend that everything is perfect…there’s still some dirt by the door and a pile of laundry to put away. I’m counting down the days until we can move with almost the same enthusiasm as I count down to the wedding. And some days, I just wake up bitchy. But I will take my imperfect little life with its sides of foibles, adjust the plan, and enjoy this outrageous journey — wherever it takes us.

Screw anybody who doesn’t like it.