gratitude sunday

IMG_1344

gratitude β€” the state of being grateful : thankfulness

On this Gratitude Sunday, I am grateful for:

  • The return of the sun this week. After a week of gray skies, its presence was welcome and made the freezing temperatures a bit easier to bear
  • The time James spent Monday chopping extra wood before the arctic weather arrived; it helped to keep us all so cozy the past week
  • Navigating myself through another challenging spot at work; regardless of the outcome, I have already been surprised by the unexpected lessons learned
  • An early birthday dinner out for James last night; we don’t eat out much and when do we often are underwhelmed and/or horrified by the cost, but Spice India delivered! And so many vegetarian options, yay!
  • My hot water bottles, which are currently warming my pjs and the bed sheets πŸ™‚
  • Lunch with my mom last week; so good to see her taking the initiative to get out despite her mobility issues. Looking forward to our February date already!
  • New yarn, including a bunch of new colors in organic cotton/wool — perfect for spring (yes, spring!)
  • More stacks of seed catalogs and garden planning — new for sure this year, edamame, as we had such good luck with beans last summer
  • Butternut squash soup
  • Evenings by the wood stove, together as a family, knitting, reading, listening to the radio, playing games — the best of winter in my book πŸ™‚

And what are you grateful for today?

welcoming the chill

IMG_8799

Been wrapped up a bit in a work project, but we’re here and well,Β  bundled up against the chilling wind, well stocked with firewood and pumpkin soup and a chickpea curry. Winter finally feels like it has arrived and lovingly embraced us in its arms. The feeling is mutual. πŸ™‚

yarn along

IMG_8585

Hi, I back this week for Ginny’s Yarn Along, and I am so happy to be knitting something new! πŸ™‚ This lacy scarf (and yes, it’s a long tube) I’m loving already. The yarn is a vintage mohair that was left behind here at Baldy Hill when we moved in. I had been waiting for the perfect project to use it, and I’m so happy to have finally found it. πŸ™‚

The book was a Christmas present from my parents, and I was thrilled when I unwrapped it. New to the “crafty-preneur” world, I am always looking for new ideas and tips to help with our new little business. Looking forward to delving into this gem in the next few days!

yarnalong_gsheller_gray

gratitude sunday

IMG_8188

gratitude β€” the state of being grateful : thankfulness

On this Gratitude Sunday, I am grateful for:

  • A weekend perfectly suited to catch up on the many indoor projects, like editing photos (LOTS of photos), ironing linen, and sewing up cushion covers
  • The amazing smell of citrus throughout the house as James makes grapefruit and orange marmalade
  • Peppermint tea
  • Our Christmas/winter tree is still fresh and holding its needles
  • Lady pheasant outside our kitchen window
  • An uneventful cataract repair surgery on Thursday, and the amazement of being able to see more than I have been able to in the past five years πŸ™‚
  • Making plans to visit friends in February
  • A victory at this week’s Saturday night Scrabble march; it was a perilously close match and great fun
  • James’ homemade onion bagels — some of the best he’s ever made
  • Finishing up the last of the Christmas/Three Kings/New Year gifts. Finally!
  • An awesome bargain on a new hammock for our summer garden πŸ™‚
  • Coming home from grocery shopping to a clean lounge (thank you, James)
  • Trusting my instincts regarding another’s intentions, which sadly weren’t exactly honorable
  • Allowing myself to rest and recuperate the past few days, even though I “felt fine”
  • Pear and dark chocolate pancakes for supper πŸ™‚

And what are you grateful for this week?

seeing

IMG_2593

I don’t know that I’ve ever seen the world like most people. My eyes became myopic at a young age, resulting in my first pair of heavy brown plastic glass frames while still in first grade. This led to a series of progressively thicker lenses every year, until I reached junior high, when my parents and a sympathetic ophthalmologist allowed me to ditch the glasses for contact lenses.

More than happy to leave behind the disastrous 1980s mauve-tinted glasses, I struggled though to train my reflexes not to blink every time my finger approached my eye’s surface with a sixty-dollar piece of mostly water + silicon. I think it took forty-five minutes to finally insert the first contact, but I persevered.

I lived life rather normally as a person with miopia magna for many years, with not quite 20/20 corrected vision but close enough, until eight years ago when I suffered a retinal detachment as a consequence of time, gravity, plus my ovoid-shaped eyeballs. Despite a successful reattachment, I lost most of the vision in my right eye. I was devastated.

But with like many of these things, our bodies and eventually our minds adjust. When I developed a cataract in the mostly blind eye several years later, I carried on as usual. Although James will tell you otherwise, of my need to turn on lights when he can see perfectly well without, or of things I simply just don’t see.

I was going to have cataract surgery a couple years ago when we were living in Spain, but I got cold feet after the ophthalmologist there told me he had never seen anything like my right eye before. And much of me was ambivalent about the operation anyway, seeing as I would experience little improvement in my vision afterward, what was the point.

This past summer I found a new eye doctor near Baldy Hill, a retina specialist, who urged me to go ahead with the operation now. Without the surgery, he could do little to assess my right eye, yet alone determine whether any new advancements may help improve my eyesight. So I went ahead and booked the op — and then Hurricane Sandy came along and zapped our electricity for four days. I called and cancelled the appointment.

Until today. My own lens with the dense cataract was broken up and sucked out and replaced with an artificial one that corrects part of my nearsightedness. Truthfully, my expectations were low, and I have been pleasantly surprised by the results. I still can’t see any detail or read with my right eye alone, but I CAN see the bigger picture — the lights on the Christmas tree, the clock on the wall, the clementine on the corner of my desk. After five years of darkness, it is nothing short of amazing.

I will never have the clarity of vision that most people do, but I’ve come to love the softened edges of my world, the dancing floaters, the infrequent but spectacular light shows brought on by ocular migraines. My eyes not only allow me to see the world, but to do so uniquely. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.