|Our front porch|
Yesterday, after my usual Saturday walk with the ladies, I braved the crowds and went Christmas shopping for some last-minute items. I like to buy little edible treats for people I see every day but with whom I don't exchange gifts. It's just something to let them know I appreciate them. I was really amazed at how busy it is out there. I wouldn't even think of going near a mall, considering what a madhouse it was in the places I did visit. This is good news, I guess, for the merchants. Last weekend before a mid-week Christmas Day. I am not sure what I'll do on Christmas, other than talk with my sister in the middle of the day, and perhaps visit my other siblings in the same way. I just downloaded Skype onto my new Kindle, and this means I can talk with anybody who has a camera on their phone or laptop—if they have Skype on theirs, that is. Technology has changed everything: now that I can actually SEE people when I talk to them, I much prefer it.
Everything will be closed up tight on Christmas Day, which is as it should be. Except for needing a place to get my coffee, I'm happy that all the people who work in those 24-hour stores will be getting a break. Except for my caffeine fix!! We do have coffee and a coffeepot if we must make it ourselves, but I really enjoy espresso much more than coffee. One thing I learned when we moved here: people in the Pacific Northwest know their coffee. Most of it in the places that I frequent is also free trade and on the expensive side, but it helps me to know that the quality I receive has not ripped off the growers. I know I'm not making a huge impact in the world, but I do think it's important to know the origin of my food.
I'll most likely head out for a nice walk in a local park on Christmas, since I won't have any other options for exercise unless, again, I decide to lift some weights here at home. It's funny to realize what a social exerciser I am: I need company to enjoy working out, while others prefer to exercise alone. I wonder if that is because I'm an extrovert. Smart Guy is introverted, and he much prefers solitary activities, including exercise. Perhaps I'll get him to join me on Christmas Day, however. The weather looks like it will be overcast in the low 40s, but without any rain. A perfect day!
I've got a couple of new worries to occupy my mind: my youngest sister Fia just got home after having spent four days in the hospital with severe asthma. She is staying home from work while she's recovering. And my other sister PJ, who had a heart attack a few months ago, is making peace with the fact that she will be disabled for the rest of her life. Her husband has been updating me with text messages, and I've got my fingers crossed that the tests she just had done will show something—anything—positive. At least, he said, they didn't keep her in the hospital, so that's a plus.
Norma Jean and I have discussed our apparent addiction to exercise. We are similar in our desire to get a workout daily, but when I think of the fact that our parents didn't make it out of their sixties, and that we've got a younger sister who is already compromised by heart problems, it makes us more convinced that staying fit is our only option for staving off heart disease. It also helps to eat the right kind of foods, and we both do that most of the time.
It's not easy at this time of the year to keep sugar and wheat out of my diet. I do my best, but I am also not willing to rigidly control my food intake when I'm at a party or enjoying a fine meal. But those are the exceptions, while healthy food is the norm. Yesterday was the last day for the Farmers' Market, and I'll truly miss the kale we enjoy from Rabbit Fields Farm. Organic kale from the Food Cooperative will take its place in our diet, but it's not the same as eating locally grown food.
I will be thinking of my blogging family on Christmas, and giving thanks for our connection, as well as for my other family members. In my mind's eye, you will, one and all, be enjoying the holiday in whatever manner is best for you. If you have kids and grandkids, I know you will be seeing the holiday through their eyes. The rest of us will be enjoying the holiday in our own ways. Be well, and I'll be seeing you next Sunday when we meet here again. Merry Christmas!