Sunday, December 12, 2010

sunday catch-up and simple pleasures

I've been trying to put up a new post for two days now. We're having some internet issues and I haven't been able to upload photos, redecorate the blog for the winter season,  or do anything except check email and browse the internet!

Hopefully things will be fixed tomorrow.

Meanwhile, it has been a very cold week, a rainy and warmer weekend, and now that everything is nice and wet, a cold front is blowing in with winds which means tomorrow night's wind chill is below zero and in the single digits all of Tuesday. Thank goodness for Salina's Whinny Warmers, and for horses that grow teddy bear coats! (no need to even mention the donka boys - they are as fluffy as stuffed animals!) I am so ready to pack up and move somewhere else until this early winter shifts in a different direction. Highs in the mid-40s and lows in the mid-20s would be welcomed. I hate to say this, but I would gladly welcome a winter solstice and Christmas day with the bizarre warm temperatures we sometimes get here during the winter.

Yesterday daughter and I braved the rain and headed to a lovely little tack consignment shop that is jam-packed with riding attire, gear, tack, and home decor. There is an absolutely stunning set of china there that has driving horses and carriages. I drooled a bit over the set and also a foxhunting scene tree skirt while daughter tried on hunt coats, shirts, breeches, and stock ties. We found a very beautiful black wool coat for her that fits well. She has room to layer, a little room to grow, and it looks extremely elegant on her. We also got a white shirt and stock tie, and some tan breeches without breaking the bank.

Unfortunately, the junior hunt and hunt breakfast this coming Saturday looks like it will have a high of 38 degrees and possible rain. There is no way I would go out in that kind of weather, but I suspect they will, and she will, and I will be standing in the cold waiting for her.

It's a good thing I discovered Rita Mae Brown's foxhunting series and just finished the first, called Outfoxed. Maybe I can root around for my inner foxhunting self on Saturday when I'm totally wishing I was home by the woodstove with Rita Mae's second novel!

Today was mostly spent driving around with husband running errands. I rarely go to more than one store or shop in a day's time, as I have totally lost the ability to drive around, park, deal with crowds and those horrid lights they have in most stores, and then stand in line to buy more stuff. But we needed groceries, pine pellets, Christmas tree lights, miscellaneous this and that, and some long underwear (which I couldn't find in the right colors/sizes) so off we went. I am a devoted local shopper but sometimes we have to venture further, to the bigger stores, to find certain things. I am now an even more devoted LandsEnd and LLBean shopper than I already was. I just have to get more organized so I have time to order things enough ahead of time to allow for the shipping.

We did see a double rainbow, there was a cranberry bliss bar and latte from Starbuck's, and the bag the cranberry bliss bar came in made the entire shopping fiasco worthwhile:

Stories are gifts.


Good food is like a good story.

With a red deer in snow banks, with huge dark brown antlers tipped with red holly berries and a white dove lighting on one antler, and snowflakes falling all around.

It was almost like a November Hill Press omen landing right in my hands.

Of all the "stuff" that came home with us in the truck, this little brown paper bag is what I have carefully made sure ended up here on my desk.

Sometimes, many times, the simple pleasures are the very best.


Grey Horse Matters said...

I hate shopping at stores and do mostly internet shopping. We have no local stores because we don't have a town (except for a town hall and post office & gas station) so there are no merchants to support. Just ordered some stuff from llbean today and it only takes 3-5 days so I'm in time for the Christmas present I bought. Your tack store sounds lovely and I'm sure our daughter will have a ball and look wonderful in her new coat.

I think we've been treated to your weather moving up the coast. We had some unbelievable wind and rain today but warmer temps. Might be in for some snow and cold temps this week though. A nice warm place sounds like a good idea. Glad all our horses are fuzzy bears too.

billie said...

Arlene, we do have some lovely local shops but there is really nowhere in our little community to buy things like basic socks, underwear, jeans, etc. There is a nice little higher-end thrift store in town that almost always has nice things for daughter and me, and with 4 very good tack shops w/in an hour's drive (one of them is 5 minutes away) we are set in that dept. I feel like I'm running weeks behind schedule but for now, we're set, I think!

Although I do have my eye on a pair of Mtn. Horse winter riding pants - those windbreaker like ones with full seats. If I get any riding done in the coming weeks I'm going to need them!

ponymaid said...

Billie, we are encased in ice - after a day of rain/snow yesterday, the temperature has now dropped drastically. I feel like a donkeysticle. Yesterday, in all the sleet and slop, a little bird with a long tail came to the paddock and sang a beautiful song in his very small voice. He looked directly at me the whole time so I feel it may have been some sort of early festive gift. I know what you mean about a sudden lifting of the spirit. Mind you, he's probably a feathery birdsticle by now...

billie said...

Sheaffer, I am sorry to hear that you are encased in ice - I do not know how you and your herd make it through those very cold winters!

Your little bird concert sounds magical and I am sure it was an early gift for a Very Special Donkey.

My daughter has put out bird seed so we are having lots of front porch visitors this week. It's been so cold most of the felines are staying inside.

We had a very light dusting of snow last night. I would give anything for a day with a temp of 50 degrees! (was it really only a few months ago that I was whining about the heat and flies?)

Stay warm and tell The Woman to remember that when it is that cold you need much more hay!! :)

Calm, Forward, Straight said...


Thanks for the reminder about the simple things... goes hand-in-hand with gratefulness :)

Ugh - I detest those overhead flourescents too!

We're in a similar boat out here on the coast. It's a 1 1/2 hour trip to get to somewhere we can buy the basics. I've often thought that a socks + underwear + jeans + shoes store would make a mint. Surprised no one has tried it.

Thank goodness for ordering online - the holidays are saved!!

billie said...

C, you are so right about that socks-underwear-jeans-shoe store making a mint. I've talked about it with a few of our local shopkeepers, who all agreed. It's always the thing missing in small towns these days.