Tuesday, December 09, 2008


I know the calendar days are moving swiftly. One. Two. Three. Nine. Just that quickly. And I am trying to sort feelings and thoughts, push forward the beauty of the moment and cast away stress and grief. I love this time of year. The traditions and connections, the soothing rhythm of the songs we sing, the spices, ribbons, greetings and light... it fills me with hope. Having my Mom here, leaning on her and playing with her, has made everything particularly good.

But those days, those fast moving days have brought us to the end of her stay.

She's Grandma Boo-Boo. William named her that. We used to be neighbors, when William was a serious baby, riding around town in the '64 Comet we shared. Now he's a serious young man, and I wish we were still neighbors of Delia and Ron, Grandma and Grandpa. I wish some days moved more slowly, like the days we spend walking on the bluffs or making gingerbread castles, or imagining ourselves in French castles. I wish there were more time to make tamales or to not make tamales, but just to debate the pros and cons of all that cooking and steam and fragrant memories of ollas passed.

Here is love.
I wish for everyone someone that laughs with them and cries with them, someone who can tell you your own stories and listen to you tell them again. Love is in the hands of the person who will hold you and push you forward and catch you, and fold your laundry.

So, I have been going slowly, absorbing the love and cherishing the laughter and the ease of our days and moments together.

And s l o w l y we have been gathering with friends and family. We went to the Holiday Christmas Parade. We've been playing Christmas music and we drove in meandering circles, looking for the best light displays. We even brought home a Christmas tree.

Nick came with us to the tree lot. We settled on a tree that Geoff calls Charlie Brown, denoting its small size. Maria thought it was too big. Aren't there always different ways of seeing things?

Guess what I did... after last Christmas, I packed 95% of our decorations for moving. I never imagined we would be here, still. We would have to turn the garage upside down to access the boxes, so...

Ready or not, days pass, visits come to an end and Christmas comes. There is no waiting or stalling... the fun things we like to do, the music I want to hear... do it now! We bought 3 small boxes of ornaments. Max and I put together a Playmobile advent calendar and hung it up. Maybe I can make stockings and more of those felt trees we displayed last year.

The joy cannot, and should not, be contained. So here we go! Behind or late, early or unprepared, messy and chaotic, bright and brilliant... whatever it is, bring it on!

The whole tree sways when Benjamin slips beneath... bad kitty... lol

Here too is love.


Frogdancer said...

Maria looks so very tiny standing beside the others!
(Actually, I'm beginning to feel the same way when I'm standing beside my own kids...)

mtnchild said...

Awwww Natalie - - the love shines, and that's all we really need. Decorations are nice, family is immeasurable! (Is that a real word?)

I wish you lots of Love and Happiness for the Christmas season.

Keep the sanity! LOL

tara said...

A lovely post. Trees, tamales, moms, love and a crazy looking plant. What is that plant? I am sure there isnt anything like it here in Idaho.

Jennifer said...

Beautiful, Natalie. just beautiful.

When a little package arrives at your house (soon -- planning to mail it today) -- do me a favor and have everyone open it right away; do not wait til Christmas.

Betty said...

What a beautiful family you have; and, Benjamin is adorable!

Lesley said...

How lovely for you to have had your mum so close.
The tree looks fab — happy Christmas!

Anonymous said...

Love your blog...You are so genuine.

nikkipolani said...

Natalie, that first image looks like something out of the deep blue sea - or something on the California coast! I love that tiny smile of William's in the shot with his Grandma Boo Boo.