December continued. . . 

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Here we see Tucker the Dog of the House, pretending to be dapper, but in fact is unable to move because he doesn't really like the sweater. A dog's face can be deceiving.

We got Tucker the Dog in December about 14 years ago during what felt like a long, lonesome month for us. Christmas was over and everyone had gone home, far away. It was a logical thing to do, we told ourselves. At first. Let's just say we later suspected he was on medication at the pet store to keep him calm.

But that was a long time ago. Now he is as mellow as an old sailor. He does all the proper things a dog should do in December. He sleeps by the fire, barks at the UPS man, and wears this sweater.

He can stay.

Tucker The Dog

"Bacon is everything."

Snoopy

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Friday, December 21, 2018

Berry Wreath

Today was the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. I'm always glad to get to this point in the year's calendar, because it means we're on our way back into the light. I'm uneasy when the days are getting shorter and shorter; it's like going into a tunnel. "We're on the other side," I tell my husband" every December 21st.

Light and I are old friends.

Coming tomorrow, right behind the shortest day like a blue shadow will be the full moon of December, also called The Full Cold Moon. The Pacific Northwest Indians called it the Snow Moon. What beautiful names. I wish we referred to them that way as commonly as we do the days of the week.

It's a bit unusual for the two to come at the same time, the solstice and the full moon. It won't happen again until 2094. I decided about three years ago that I would try to never miss seeing the full moon when it's up. It's a wonderful site with its pearl-white glow and quiet persistence. It's like giving birth--a miracle we don't see anymore because it is so "common."

The winter solstice, the full moon, and Christmas all coinciding make for quite a grand finale to the year 2018. When I stop to think of the centuries of Decembers past, the cold moons coming and coming, right on time every time, the silent beauties we take for granted. . .

. . . well, let's just say I feel small; and small feels just about right.

Nobody be big.

Nobody be small.

Everybody be medium.

 

Rules written by a group of 8-year old boys for their new club

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Christmas Eve, 2018, Monday

Yes, this is our home; but no, it's not snowing right now. This was taken about 7 years ago when we were driving home from a family dinner on Christmas day.

The snow started when we were still saying our goodbyes. At first, our 40-minute drive home was exciting as we watched everything "pretty up" and turn white. Not many of us were on the road at the time, however, and it was starting to get late. We wondered if we might get stuck on one of the hilly two-lane roads in our area.

Snow On Christmas

It felt good to finally drive past Drew The Tree Man's house and clear the entrance to our neighborhood. Before the landscape could ice over, we saw our home waiting innocently like a Christmas store window. We stopped briefly to take this picture, then drove into our driveway leaving only a set of tire tracks behind us. Into the house and a quick shut of the door. There now, safe and warm.

I put the snow home image on our cards the next Christmas, and that's what you see here.

In spite of many years spent living in West Virginia, Tennessee, and northern Georgia, I haven't seen a lot of snow, and certainly not the kind that makes the landscape perfectly smooth and white like a melting marshmallow.

What I've been left with is a slide show memory of a few beautiful scenes: all-white rolling hills in Tennessee's cow country; breath-taking moonshadows that turned the white snow a beautiful pale blue; a drive home from the hospital at 6 AM into the light of a snowy Georgia sunrise after the birth of our first grandchild; and a Tennessee ice storm that sparkled in the sun like a crystal castle of light.

But I remember, too, that snow can be hard: frozen locks and windshield on our car at daybreak when we were trying to get to work was tough. So was the slush and mud--so much slush and mud. I fought ice-encrusted mittens, and cabin fever--yes, there is such a thing as cabin fever!

After so much rain this month, the sky opened up on this best of all days, deep blue and spotless, just in time to let in Christmas. "How clean and bright," I thought. "Now I can pick up one more gift for one last stocking, and Santa has a clear shot down the chimney."

Tonight after candlelight service, I intend to dust off a Tennessee memory and pretend it's snowing. I'll wrap a few more gifts, stay warm inside, and drink Christmas coffee.

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

My wish for you on this merry Christmas Eve is simple. Leave the lights on and sleep well at your home.

* * *

When what to my wondering eyes should appear,

But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer...

 

from the poem "The Night Before Christmas" by Clement C. Moore

Until next time.

The Head Rabbit

December 25, Christmas Day 2018

Santa With Tree

Keziah at Christmas

Snowman and Orange

"...It was always said of him,

that he knew how to keep Christmas well,

if any man alive possessed the knowledge.

May that be truly said of us, and all of us!

And so, as Tiny Tim observed,

God bless us, every one!"

 

from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Vintage Christmas

The tree came down today, or at least in part, and along with it the garland above the garage, the lights on the mantle, the two woodland elves on the dining room table.

The road outside was foggy and most of our neighbors had already taken down their outdoor decorations, so the long grey street seemed a little bland and sleepy.

Undressing Christmas and putting everything back in the box takes a day like that, don't you think? It's not that we were unhappy for all that wild color and energy that just ended two days ago, but a kind of lazy tired, a peaceful tired came in "on little cat feet" just as we were finishing our eggs and toast on this much-needed pause in this last month of the year. . .

. . . and for that I was grateful. I decided this was the day to say goodbye to the holidays. "Should I take the tree down today?" I asked my husband who was working nearby on a laptop problem. "I guess so," he said.

I took each ornament from the tree and placed it in a sturdy box to be stored in the laundry area until next year. The work was pleasant, and time went quickly. I changed the music from "Sleigh Bells" to Ella Fitzgerald and brought out the last of the raspberry cookies. Tucker watched from the couch.

By early evening my husband and I were ready for the last of the leftovers, then some time to sit quietly and watch the fire perform for us one of its warm light shows.

"Where would you like for us to be a year from now?" I asked my husband.

"I don't know, " he said; and we fell asleep, too tired to see past nine o'clock, and two days short of a new year in which to figure it all out.

 

"Quite often lately I have the feeling I don't know what's going on."

Snoopy

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Monday, December 31, 2018

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

Thank you 2018

for your gift of time.

You can retire now,

but let 2019 in on your way out!

 

I skipped over water, I danced over sea,

And all the birds in the air

Couldn't catch me!

 

from a children's poem

* * *

See you next year,

The Head Rabbit