With some time off, I find myself wanting to write an extra piece for the holiday. WInter isn’t quite here, but there are shorter days and longer nights. With less sunshine, more darkness and cold, it can sometimes be hard to remember brighter times. The holidays help, with the gathering of family and friends, yet there are still times when that absence of light starts to seem like a lack of hope. negative associations with winter. We may wonder if the weather will ever warm and if spring will come again.
Life in Lakeside
I’m writing this post on a quiet November evening, working to find words. Rain is drumming down on the roof, the first winter storm of the season, and I find myself relaxing in spite of stress at my day job. I am ready for a rest and next week I will take a few days off to spend time at home with my family.
Another change in the season and the carved pumpkins and scary decorations are put away until next year. There are still pumpkins on display, with the added display of squash, and corn, symbols of a bountiful harvest. There are some Christmas decorations sneaking in, but most people are enjoying the quiet thankfulness of November before moving on.
I am continuing with my theme for the month of October, cleaning. I have been somewhat busy with cleaning house but that’s not the only cleaning I’ve done. The other cleaning, perhaps more of a cleansing, is reviewing old memories. I find it all too easy to stay attached to old memories and revisit the past. Some of those memories bring comfort and longing as I remember happy times with family and friends. There are people I miss and wish I could spend more time with. Other memories are not so pleasant, memories of failure or shame at past events.
The holiday this week is Patriot Day for September 11th. Over the last few years, as I’ve observed problem over the last few years, I have wondered if I have done enough of service for my community. I have started helping out with the local autism society and sharing our family experiences with other parents of autistic children. Sometimes it seems like a small thing, but I occasionally get comments that my information has helped.
This week it is time to celebrate the bow tie! Yes, that symbol of a lack of fashion sense,the bow tie has a national holiday. My son was challenged in getting pictures for this special holiday, but he managed to find a subjects for his snapshots.
This week has the holidays National Hot Dog Day and World Emoji day, so my son took pictures as part of our celebration. Emoji’s are an interesting addition to language and communication, if used like a seasoning, in smaller doses. However, some people feel they need ALL OF THE EMOJIs and post accordingly. Or perhaps I’m just getting old and suspicious of this new development. I’m much more comfortable with hot dogs, although I don’t eat them much anymore. Too much salt and other things that cause me to regret my decision later on.
This last weekend, I drove on a back road through the hills to visit my hairdresser for a haircut. While I drove, I noticed the lush green of the trees, fuller than they were a few weeks ago. The bushes were larger and crowded, filling the empty space in the hills, and adding to the impression of a richness of the growing season. I realized that in the last few weeks spring had fully switched over to summer.
The official start of summer is almost here although we are still enjoying moderate weather in San Diego. Our moderate weather included rain, which is very unusual for June. Not a rainstorm, more drizzle than downpour, but the streets and sidewalks were wet when I drove to work earlier this week.
The last couple of weeks have been busy but I have taken a few moments here and there to enjoy the moment. Our weather is sunnier now and my sinuses are improving as well. I have had a couple of good workouts and enjoyed a walk on our trail. The yellow flowers are fading out and purple/violet is the strong theme for wild flowers. So far, my plants are surviving and the rabbits and squirrels haven’t eaten them yet. I planted marigolds on the edges of my gardens, I think they are helping to keep them away. Something to remember for future gardening.
The end of May is approaching and the days are getting longer. We have had a few glimpses of summer but right now the weather is cloudy and there is even some rain. I took advantage of the cooler weather to plant some vegetables and flowers. I also planted some ground cover and I’m crossing my fingers that it will grow in the rocky soil around our house. There was some type of squash growing our compost pile that I moved out into a garden bed, curious to see if it survives and what kind of vegetable it produces.
With the start of May, spring continues, although not in the idealized, mild, sunny days often pictured in stories. We are experiencing a typical San Diego spring, or ‘May Gray’ as it is called. The days have been overcast, we’ve even had some rain, which is grayer than normal. However, I am not in a hurry for hot temperatures, so I’ll make do with cloudy days and enjoy the sun when it peeps out for bit. While it is spring time, the pictures are for the theme of family. It is always interesting to see the pictures my son picks out for these themes, even if I don't stay on topic for them.
We are now approaching the halfway point for April. I’ve looked over the calendar, and it’s a busy month. Easter will be on the 21st, we made it through April Fool’s day, Earth Day is on the 22nd and there are anniversaries for several historical events.
With the vernal equinox on March 20th, spring is now officially here. There are lots of wild flowers in our area this year and our hills are very green after all of the rain we’ve had. Birds and butterflies are busy migrating, it feels like winter is losing its hold and spring will finally come and stay for a bit.
After the last few weeks of cold, rainy weather, I’m ready for winter to end. There was a break in the clouds today, it felt good to weed out our vegetable garden in the front yard. The ground was still soft enough to make it easy to pull the weeds.
This last weekend was a bit different, my son and I attended a science fiction convention, CondorCon. After several very busy weeks at work, I enjoyed the break, getting out and listening to authors talk about writing, watching people dressed up as their favorite characters and stepping back from every day life. We were even blessed with sunny weather, just in time for the convention and any out of town visitors to our fair city.
It’s the middle of February and winter is definitely in place, in your face and ready to rock and roll. Based on the current decor choices, gray and cloudy with some more gray and cloudy in the forecast, I think most people are ready for a change in the season. Unfortunately, it looks like winter is offended that her welcome is worn out and giving us a cold shoulder along with ice, snow, and rain, depending on how far north you live.