"On the plains of Oklahoma, with a windshield sunset in your eyes like a watercolor painted sky, you'd think heavens doors have opened."
Fly Over States

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blessed Solstice!

Today is the shortest day of the year and there was a lunar eclipse in the wee hours of the morning (I slept through it).  That hasn't occurred since the 17th century.
This is always a day I look forward to because these short, dark days begin to lengthen, starting tomorrow.  We still have the winter to survive (and it is winter, as of today) but at least we can feel like we are winning the battle for daylight even if the cold weather may feel like it has the upper hand for the next couple of months.  I am not sure I could take the intense darkness and the coldest cold  at the same time.  Fortunately, Oklahoma isn't as prone to week in, week out bad weather the way some places are.  Come late February, most of us will feel like we won the battle between darkness and light.  I am speaking about climate/weather - not in the spiritual sense. :)

Today was also the day for the closing on the land we'd been thinking of buying.  It is just over 53 acres and the closing went off without a hitch.  The heirs (six siblings!) all came dressed in their Christmas finery and seemed very, very nice.  I thought it was so sweet that they came en mass to sign off on the family homestead and think they must surely have had mixed feelings of letting it go.  I know I would.  After speaking to them, I am not sure how accurate much of my information about the property has been in previous posts but what is clear is that they are a strong family with happy memories growing up there.  I need to head out to the County Seat after Christmas to check out how much of the land has been allotted for farming and how much for grazing.  I was told by a family member that it had never been farmed and that there remain buffalo wallows on the land from early days.  The late patriarch of the family was born in 1900. 

We drove out to the property after the closing and walked around for a few minutes but needed to get back to the house to check on the girls.  Here are a few quick photos:
Dry creek run off:

What the?????  There was a patch of the burrows that a SUV could fall into and not be seen again.  The openings were 10 inches in diameter and dropped 4 - 5 feet straight down.  If you dropped a tea cup Yorkie in there, you'd never see it again. 

The following was a hollow log in a dry creek bed that was covered up with bits of bark and wood chips by some critter.  I started to look in the log but husband steered me away from it.  I have no idea what would have built it but something did.  When I go back out there, I will try to get a closer look when I am not hampered by adult supervision.  Hope I don't get my nose nipped off. 
I may take my birdcam out there ahead of time and set it up in the woods to see what sort of varmints are partying on the property.
And speaking of parties, last night, we attended a neighborhood Christmas party and had such a nice time. 
This is an area that has many people born and raised, locally, so "small world" is a common refrain.  We've physically lived here a year and I am ashamed to say I had only met a couple of my neighbors.  Disgraceful.  Turns out, the neighbors hosting the party have a daughter who was in band with one of my girls (they both played clarinet which shrunk the world, further).  Our girls had already "friended" each other on Facebook.  Who knew?   I actually recalled her name once I had it in context.  

Likewise, my husband's late mother was fondly remembered by several people we just met who went to school with husband or his siblings.  His mother worked for the local school for many years.   There was even one of her former employers at the party who lives down the street and we didn't know it.  The way this went was that I would mention that my husband grew up in the area.  They'd then make the connection of our last name with his mother and enthusiastically make kind comments about her.  Few realised she passed away so long ago.   It made me smile to see Husband beam upon realizing that his dear mother hadn't been forgotten and that she had positively touched so many people in her too short life.  

I never met my husband's mother, who passed away more than 25 years ago.  That being said, I have consistently heard her described as a sweet person by just about everyone who ever knew her.  Many of those people are middle aged people (to be kind :)) who remembered her from the time they were in school.  Their tone of voice tells me they mean really sweet, not just "nice."  I am sorry I didn't have the pleasure of knowing her although I might have been utterly intimidated.  My husband still suffers grief after all these years and the loss is probably all the more acute because she was such a good mother.  Not only was she "sweet," she was strong, loving, funny and sensible.  One of the loveliest things about my husband that I found so endearing when we first met was his down to earth, genuine and matter of fact love and respect for his parents.  No drama there and I appreciate that. 

Family drama is highly overrated.

Been working on cleaning up my sewing room.  With my art classes, it sort of turned into a craft room and got completely out of control to the point where no sane person could retain that sanity if they were in there for any length of time.  Here are some photos of my shame:
 There is no excuse for that or this closet:
 I still have a ways to go but the closet is looking better:
I can't believe I actually posted that hoarder's paradise.

Off to throw some more wood on the fire. 

Happy Quilting, Penny, Evelyn and Pearl


Sherry said...

There's NOTHING better than going home! Even getting back to work in the courthouse (I worked there 27 years ago) has been like a homecoming!

Sewing/quilting/craft rooms even KITCHENS can get in a mess in a relatively short period of time.

BilboWaggins said...

Solstice Blessings to you too.

Congratulations on purchasing your land. Envy is not an attractive trait but I confess to being a tad jealous. I would love 53 acres, but given the price of land around here, that would probably cost more than our house }>

Paula in Studio City, CA said...

Belated Solstice greetings as the Wheel of the Year turns. Blessed be!

Carol OklaTwister said...

Happy Solstice! And congratulations on the land purchase. Sounds like you and DH had a good week.