Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year's Day, 2013

Fresh Starts.

There is something very satisfying about completing Christmas clean-up by New Year's Day.  I am no neat freak, not by a long shot (alas) but getting the tree down makes me happy.

Last week, the lit tree at twilight made the family room feel warm and cosy.

By New Year's Eve, it felt cluttered and tiresome.

With the tree gone, a white poinsettia, a gift from my sister Mary, has taken its place.  Although it, too, is a symbol of Christmas, the plant brings a lighter, airier presence and makes a cheery sight in the winter sun.

With that chore finished, the Handsome Husband and I took the dogs and headed out to Moreau State Park, just north of Saratoga. The air was sharp and clear and cold and felt wonderful.

Lots of people were out and about this New Year's afternoon. Like us, some folks were walking dogs. Others were snowshoeing or cross country skiing.
 When we got home, I made hot cocoa: chocolate caramel for the HH, chocolate mint for me. These, too, were a gift from my sister, tucked into a Christmas basket of goodies.

 The corner of the kitchen where I sometimes sit is also bright with seasonal plants. A red poinsettia is here, along with a paperwhite bulb just coming along, and an amazing white amaryllis. A Christmas cactus has recently finished blooming. These are cheerful sights with the snowy yard on view behind them.

The HH has come in from another room to report gloomy news about the Fiscal Cliff. How silly this whole mess seems. While the politicians huffed and puffed in Washington, we were enjoying the beauty and clear fresh air of a northern New York winter day. Maybe we should invite all of Congress to come up for a walk around Moreau Lake, let them clear their heads.

Time now to go start dinner. A simple meat loaf with baked potatoes is on the menu.

Wishing you a clear, fresh, and happy New Year, filled with many simple pleasures (the best kind, really.)