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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Hey! Where Do You Think You're Going, November!

Image result for confessionalLawsie! It's half over and TheQueen has been so silent. Well. I should confess - I have been committing blog-ultery over on Sparkpeople dot com because this close to the Food Frenzie of the holiday season, about the only thing I've been concentrating on is managing my weight. This is a perennial Queenly issue anyway and 2014 has been a particularly difficult year for keeping things in check.

In a deeper confession, I'm not sure I really have anything to say here today, but I don't want to come back later and see that there are zero posts for November.

What? TheQueen has nothing to say? Well - of course she always has something to say - but too much of it is likely to be whining and kvetching and complaining. Autumn of 2014 hasn't been any easier than Summer, Spring or Winter was. No. That's not true. We have automatic heat in the house now so WOW ... that has made a huge difference. If you recall, a large part of the reason last winter was so effingly difficult was that we couldn't get this house warm. Our sole source of heat was the old wood stove and the firewood, while seasoned, was always wet because it was always raining or sleeting or just plain cloudy and the temps stayed down down down. Wet wood is bad enough but when your prince is the type who forgets to keep the fire going while you are at work, wet wood is evil incarnate.

This year we have festooned the walls with these  and life is so different. A chilly day - and we have had quite a few of them already - just means when I get home the house is toasty warm. Coming down to the den to type in the wee dark hours of the morning used to mean putting on my winter coat and wrapping up in a blanket and taking frequent breaks to hold hot cups of coffee. Now things are different. Things are better. I am feeling disgustingly spoiled.

And for the curious - so far - and granted - we're still in the easy part of the cold weather season - the electric bill has gone up about $10. I will wait till the end of the cold before I make my final review of this system but so far - much more than so good.

So what else can I tell you about TheQueen?  There are a scant 46 days left of this year (to which I won't be all that sorry to bid goodbye - and now I'm feeling guilty for complaining about the gift of life and all) and much of that is already booked with holiday stuff.  My loyal fans know that I love me some holiday season but  I swannie, I can't believe it's already time to start Making Plans. I did have the good grace to cast on a Christmas sock and so there is real knitting going on (turning the heal on sock #1 today). And at least I thought about what sort of Christmas Card I'd like to make. Sister just sent out the call for photos for the Family Christmas Calendar. She started making them as gifts to the parents - but we all love them and I'm glad she's continuing the tradition now that we are orphans. My beloved LD and our precious daughter in law PD will be here for Thanksgiving, along with 7 other guests. And I am hope hope hoping we can finally get back to Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens for a caroling light show. I have explained to ThePrinceConsort that there are to be no heart attacks this Christmas.

I have also pulled out my tattered copies of the Betsy-Tacy books because nobody can do autumn like Maud Hart Lovelace. Her high school books are my favorites although I am also a sucker for Betsy and Tacy go Downtown - which is about middle-schoolers. Autobiographical, with the perfect patina of fiction smoothing over memories and plot twists, these books had as big an impact on forming me as "The Laura Books". (Laura Ingalls Wilder) Perhaps even a greater impact, now that I am old and now that I already got to do my own Little House in the Big Woods thing and it's pretty much a fulfilled fantasy instead of a longing. I read these kiddy books in secret because ThePrince will prod me about why I am reading them again if he sees me and TheQueen disdains explaining herself. Also - this particular trip down memory lane is something I like to do alone and he is all about the togetherness.

One of these days I will honor these books with a blogpost about why they are so important - to me and, I wish, to today's techno-plugged kids. I could go on and on about why I think they are preferable to most of the  soft-core violence and suffering stuff being written for middle readers these days, but for this fall I will just enjoy them.

So. What else? I haven't done much art lately and was feeling decidedly colorless and art-less. Also, I have been fighting with some excess poundage (hence the above-mentioned blog-ultery) for most of 2014. In an effort to give attention to both issues I have created a glitter chart for myself - small enough to fit in my Daytimer. It has a clutch of action-steps I can take to earn points and when I earn 100 points I can add $100 to the camera fund ... that pitiful sum which I have raided all summer long when Other Expenses cropped up. I would very much like to get a new camera and I think I'll need about $300 for it. There is an additional reward of a pair of boots when I reach my goal.

And so. That is the state of mid-November at TheCastle. One will hope that the future will hold more and perhaps even better quality writing from TheQueen. But there you have it - one can always hope. There is always tomorrow. And Tara.

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