Hello, holiday season

photo(41)I cleared away the paperwork and pile of laundry so I could sit and focus.
I highly recommend it.
photo(42) photo(43) photo(45)

Hello, friends. I seem to have gotten sidetracked recently, and really hadn’t intended on falling away for so long. Actually, I hadn’t planned to take a break from this space at all. Though, in all honesty, I feel like this season has been a little rough. It might be something to do with the cold; it’s 32 degrees on some of these California mornings and when my house doesn’t heat up at night, I’m motivated to do little but retreat under piles of heavy blankets before I’ve done anything productive or anything that I enjoy. Have you felt that, too? That darkness gets me bad. The kind that fills in the light just before I leave work at night; it’s a real bummer if I don’t make it out for a chilly walk in the afternoon. And then there’s those caffeine-immune sleepies that hit me whether I sleep four or nine hours. And that lack of motivation when it’s comes to training for that little half marathon. And nothing sounds dreamier than thick socks, a hot vanilla chai and a movie. I know that I know that I know that I’m not the only one.

It might have something to do with the holidays, too. They’ve never bothered me that I can remember. But this year, I’m struggling to complete any one gift. My creativity feels dry as everything I’m making seems lackluster and nothing like I imagined. I’m already feeling the pull of having divorced parents; almost 30 years in, it’s still not any easier to explain why only one side gets me on Christmas day. I love Christmas, but like a lot of people, I’ll be okay when all of the expectations of Christmas are behind us.

One thing I’ve tried focusing on this past year are all of those little things that make like so special. So when the sky seems too dark and my eyelids don’t feel like staying open, I think of those things. Lately, I’ve smiled big at a clean desktop, so I can focus a little bit better on art and projects; miraculously, it worked. I’ve smiled at getting caught up on “Parenthood” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” hearing She & Him’s Christmas album, hanging white socks on a mantle over a wood stove, eating cayenne pepper peanut brittle made by a friend and waking up to three dogs sleeping on my bed, even if they are not allowed and they take up all of my space.

How are you feeling this time of year? I’m imagining a lot of people are tired as Christmas is only days away. I’m so excited for the time to celebrate with friends and family and to have a little bit of time to myself. What is making you smile these days?

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3 Responses to Hello, holiday season

  1. Thanks for sharing. I couldn’t put in into words but I’m right there with you. I’m going to try to get to the indoor pool a couple of evenings a week. After a swim, you can go to sleep dreamy and relaxed and feel the righteousness of exercise. More meditating, more fires, games and friends. It’s our time to reflect and rest. The bears got this right.

  2. Bo says:

    Hi Lauren, my name is Bo and I live onth eopposite side of the world – in bright and sunny South Africa :-) I have been receiving your blog posts via email for the last year or so, and I have to just take this opportunity to thank you for always being that “human element” to my day in the office! I’m sure I speak for a lot of people who read your blog posts when I say thank you so much for alays just being YOU. It really doesn’t matter how you’re feeling on the day, and your posts always convey your true emotion that you felt in the occasion/day/visit/project. You inspire me with your fantastic photographs, and stories about your family and friends (and let’s not forget the pooches!) Regarding your post above, about sharig yourself between divorced parents over the Festive Season, I can totally relate! It’s actually such an un-necessary stress causer every year, I sometimes think it might be easier not to see anyone of the folks on that one “special” day of the year… As for the weather on my side, we’re lucky to have Summer with us here in SA while its colder Wintery cousin resides on your side of the world for a few months. Summer is one of my many reasons to smile, as is my not yet written down list of “resolutions” which include: not allowing work to stress me out to th epoint where my home-life affected in any way; spending a lot more time with friends that I really don’t see often enough; getting out of bed earlier; increasing my gym days to 5 days a week and to quit smoking :-) I too have a wonderful pooch at home, he’s a 10 month old black Staffordshire Terrier and he is mine and my fiance’s most precious reason to smile! Thank you again for all the stories, pics, dreams, brick-a-brack and smiles!

    Bo Hiscox
    Johannesburg
    South Africa

  3. Maggie says:

    I feel you on all this. Even though the holidays were so eventful, exciting and fun, I’m ready to settle back in, drink coffee from an actual cup (not travel mug) and spend some time writing, maybe even blogging (crazy, right?) and just getting back on track. Your little candle light set up sounds perfect.

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