On Saturday, January 7th, in our neck of the world, we got to 64* here in NJ, warm enough for tank tops & flip-flops. No need for a jacket, scarf, gloves or faus fur-lined anything. Even as the sun set and the nearly full Moon rose, the air was balmy and smelled faintly of Spring & grapes. Things in my garden want to bloom, and as a matter of fact, the Autumn Joy Sedum, normally at rest now, is re-blooming on the front porch! (Pictured above).
Rain, even thunderstorms are on their way and will arrive tonight. Crazy!
Epiphany passed and Christmas is packed away & back in the basement once again. Always makes me a little sad, but for some reason even more so with these warm temps, probably because it was on the warm side when it all went up! But, I'm thoroughly content now that the house is fairly clutter-free and cozied up for the rest of Winter & Valentines.
Winter is supposed to return about mid January but I'm skeptical as of now. I can't wait for snow here on the coast but am steeling myself against getting my hopes up over it! It is what it is, right?
Maybe the warmer temps are to blame but I actually started making some gardening notes in my journal yesterday! I usually don't begin making plans for my garden until at least February despite the ever-growing stack of lovely catalogs that have been arriving lately. Everything is out of sorts it seems!
Another year of reading has begun and I, for one, am thankful for the fresh start! I only finished 16 books in 2011, 15 as of August and the final one in December. Another reading rut of a year it was in 2011. Not sure why. I'm praying I find my way out of it! Reading has been a favorite past time since I was a very little girl and this last year & a half plus has been discouraging despite some good reads (many of which were re-reads of all-time favorites though).
Our first read of the new year for the evening bookclub is Adriana Trigiani's Big Stone Gap. So far it seems like my kind of read and a nice break from our more usual literary selections. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is the first read of the year for the breakfast bookclub and I'm not looking forward to it honestly (I've heard it's violent) but maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.
I'm coordinating the three month Winter short story group this year and we'll begin meeting in February. I picked Edith Wharton's "All Souls" as our first read. It's my favorite Wharton short story and all time favorite short story. The next selections will be picked by other members.
I'm so glad we aren't starting in January this year! This inner ear/nose/sinus infection I've had since the week before Christmas is kicking my butt and I haven't re-read All Souls yet or gotten any notes on Wharton together. (I'm facilitating the first discussion).
We hit the Old Church book sale the week before Christmas as well as the weekend after New Years which garnered a lot of books for little money and I made a Barnes & Noble run on New Year's Eve morning to pick up a few things on sale I'd seen around Christmas. (All are pictured above). And Hubbs picked up Rebecca Rasmussen's The Bird Sisters A Novel for me from the library the other day. Now I've got so many books to read I don't know where to start!
Speaking of Hubbs, I'm glad he's been home on Winter layoff. Usually I'm home sick by myself and it's been nice to have him around to help me with things and take care of me a little bit. (He makes incredible beef veggie soup!)
Maybe if I wasn't feeling so awful physically I wouldn't be such a mess over my father.in.law being in the hospital down south. Awaiting news on a loved one is hard enough when you're right there, but from the opposite end of the East Coast it seems unbearable! The ole saying is, "no news is good news" so I'm praying it holds true! (Prayers are welcome & greatly appreciated).
I'm still so tickled pink and excited over writing for The #gardenchat Blog! I'm already writing my 3rd column which I'll post this coming Saturday. I've also been journaling and jotting down a lot of notes. More writing overall than I've done in ages! Now that's a good start to a new year!
Well, it's time to settle in for the evening and await our Chinese food delivery for dinner. I hope 2012 has been good to you so far!
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