Mist’s Missing Christmas Tree

Mist was fine yesterday, the day the Christmas Tree went out the window. She did not seem to notice it was gone. This morning the cold light of reality dawned. Mist has been attempting to lead us over to the spot where the Christmas Tree stood, once she has our attention she will yowl at the top of her lungs. She is not amused. Apparently that tree belonged to her. We had no right to remove it. Mist is in mourning for the Christmas Tree.

To alleviate Mist’s distress, I filled a mug with water and placed it under the plant stand that sits close to the former location of the Christmas Tree. Mist immediately found it, and the yowling stopped. Distraction worked, for now at least.

After taking out the tree, we filled the space with Attila’s Great Grandfather’s “desk”. We placed it on our existing filing cabinets, and it makes a perfect work centre. My personal bonus is that it is the correct height for standing to use the laptop. There is an electrical outlet nearby.

This “desk” sat on the store counter in Attila’s Great Grandfather’s store, which was in Saginaw, Michigan. It has great sentimental value for Attila, and I love it because it is beautiful and functional at the same time.
DSCF4855 Attila desk

December and January were bitterly cold, and most days required three firings in the masonry heater. As well, frequent firings of the little cast iron wood stove in the basement were required. Yesterday I asked Attila how our firewood supply was lasting. “Two thirds gone,” he told me. That did not sound good, we have two months of winter heating left this season. The real shock was seeing exactly what Attila meant by “two thirds gone.” Out of the six rows of firewood in the woodshed, one complete row is left, and almost another whole row is dismantled and scattered in the shed. It looks very empty!

We have another wood pile in the yard, covered with copious amounts of snow. There will be some digging and serious snow removal going on in the back yard over the next few weeks!

Worldly Distractions


Date: 6:13 PM EST Monday 3 February 2014
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 102.8 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -10.5°C
Dewpoint: -14.2°C
Humidity: 75%
Wind: NW 5 km/h
Wind Chill: -14


“An idealist is one who, on noticing that a rose smells better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.”
H. L. Mencken
1880 – 1956


This morning five inches of snow rests lightly on the deck railing. The pre-solstice snow is always beautiful to my eyes. In January I start to need snow goggles, by March I am as driven as a snowflake in a blizzard, to see the last of it. Falling on all that beautiful snow this morning is freezing rain pellets. I cannot see them, but I can certainly hear them as they pepper the windows.

Yesterday I saw a sunbeam, early in the morning, just one. What a cheerful thing a sunbeam is!

Last night Attila brought home a Christmas tree, a real one. There is a wealthy aroma of pine in the house. Such memories are elicited by the scent of pine needles; of school Christmas crafts, singing Christmas Carols, Mother Santa Clause, pretty coloured lights reflecting in glass baubles, Christmas Stockings, turkey dinners, sweets, and happy hours with a colouring book and crayons. My Mother made sure Christmas was a special time of peace and plenty for us. Under the circumstances in which we lived, that was no small task.

I just finished saving a complete entry to file, that I decided not to post. Sometimes I write just to find out what is going on in the depths of my unconscious. What comes out is often surprising, and painful to deal with. However, once it is out where I can see it, things become much clearer. Writing, with honesty, is a wonderful tool if one seeks self knowledge.

We stopped by a roadside stand to purchase “winter” vegetables, on our trip home from the little house in the city. We now have a plentiful supply of cooked, frozen squash, and rutabaga. The squash we purchased for a mere $3.00 was the largest I have ever seen, bigger than a basketball. We will save the seeds and try to grow this type of squash at our little house in the city. I am planning on trying the rutabaga Finnish Christmas dish Lanttulaatikko (Finnish Mashed Turnip Casserole).

The biggest Hubbard Squash I have ever seen, and it is all ours!
Giant hubbard squash dscf3956

Cooking is a time consuming activity, particularly from scratch. It is very rewarding work.

Today’s project is scanning photos taken in England, of relatives on my maternal Grandmother’s side of the family. They hail from Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire, England, and the photo’s were taken between 1903 and 1950. I have yet to locate any of my living relatives in England, as contact with them all but ceased when my Grandmother passed away. My Aunt kept in touch with them, but she too has passed.

Polly and Percy, probably their wedding day, 1903, England. Polly is my first cousin twice removed, my Mom’s first cousin once removed, and my Grandmother’s first cousin.

Worldly Distractions


Cloudy, Freezing Rain
Date: 10:00 AM EST Wednesday 4 December 2013
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 101.8 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -2.2°C
Dewpoint: -2.8°C
Humidity: 95%
Wind: E 9 km/h
Wind Chill: -6


“We don’t know a millionth of one percent about anything.”
Thomas A. Edison
1847 – 1931