Sunday, December 23, 2012

winter solstice 2012

The wind was literally howling this solstice morning and a dust devil was whirling in the back yard. Which seemed fitting given the year we've all had. More than the usual number of things to leave behind in the darkness, many bright and wonderful things to look toward in the growing light.

The day brought many gifts.

When I went out to the barn to feed breakfast, I found a black mare covered in dried mud, which means not only did she roll like every other horse on this property did last night, she got up again! 

On cold windy days I love bringing the horses into the barn, loading them up with hay, and heating up water with my electric kettle to warm their water buckets. There is almost nothing sweeter than standing in the barn aisle, wind blocked with whatever windows and doors need closing, hearing them munch on hay. I did this twice on the solstice day - at breakfast, and then again at dinnertime, when they were all tucked in until the last feed when got their blankets on for the cold windy night and turned out where they could see the stars. 

We had a very beautiful solstice meal together. My daughter made a green salad with walnuts and other tidbits and a home-made balsamic dressing.

My son made falafels which were delicious.

And I baked up some Scotch eggs, which have become a family favorite.

We listened to music, read some poems, and listened to Robert Frost read his poem Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening.

There are also two gifts that need some photos of introduction!

Meet Pixie and her brother Pippin!

 As you can imagine, these two kittens have brought a huge amount of joy to November Hill. We went to pick up Pixie last Sunday and when we brought the cat carrier in, Pippin ran into it and would not come out. So it was clear he had chosen US and what is the only thing better than a new kitten?

Two new kittens!

They were in my bedroom/bathroom area for two days with a gate. The third day they climbed the gate and have done a very nice job integrating with the Corgis and the adult cats. 

We are back to a full house here and I'm so glad. I know that Keats and Moomintroll approve.

Hope everyone had a winter solstice that brought its own gifts to you and yours... 

With thanks to dear husband for photographing these kitten-meows! 


Grey Horse Matters said...

So glad to hear you have two new kittens. What a wonderful Christmas gift for all of you.

Salina must be feeling good too, that's another gift.

Have a lovely Christmas and Happy New Year.

billie said...

You too, A- for now we've got a happy bunch on the hill. :)

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

I love seeing the solstice come and go!

(despite those howling winds) The world didn't end, although, I understand why they say people go a little crazy in California when the Santa Ana's set in...

The kit-tens are beautiful - congratulations on the new additions. Glad Salina is comfy enough to roll, and I love hearing about your cozy barn (and inside the house) routines.

Happiest of holidays to your family!

Anonymous said...

Pippin's markings look as if a black kitten were hugging him from behind! :)

Merry Christmas to you and yours,

billie said...

Andree, I hadn't noticed that until you mentioned it - thanks for pointing it out! Merry Christmas to you and yours as well!

billie said...

C, thanks and thank you for the wonderful Christmas card. It's on my card display. :)

Matthew C. said...

Lots more kitty pix coming soon. . .

billie said...

Yay, Matthew!