Thursday, December 28, 2006

We Wish You a Married Christmas

Well, the Doctor and I officially had a first Christmas together and it was quite marvelous. In the prior years, I've always flown back to the VA to be with my family for the week and he's gone back to L.A. to see his parents, so this year was our first together.

Before going to midnight mass, we lit luminarias down our porch, the candles flickering in the cold night. I haven't been to mass in years (yes, I know, we cafeteria Catholics do pick and choose) and this was my first time in ABQ. The priest has recently been promoted to monsignor, probably because he loves to hear himself talk. Oh my. The homily dragged on slower than a sloth. We didn't get home until 2 a.m., which is not an unusual time for us to go to bed on a weekend, but the fact we had been in chuch simply enhanced our sleepiness.

I got up at 10:30 and waited for the Doctor to roll out of bed. We peeked in our stockings (and gave the Roo her knuckle bone from Santa) before making mimosas and toasting Baby God Jesus a happy birthday.

I got resoundly drunk on champange while roasting the turkey, mashing the potatoes and fluffing the stuffing and actually remember very little of the meal, but the Doctor insists the food was delicious (the leftovers were top notch, if I do say so myself).

So yes, the first Married Christmas was wonderful, filled with light, love and a wee bit of shag-drunk-lovin'.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Dreaming of a Whiiiiiiite Christmas!

We had our first real snow yesterday. I have to say, it's odd to see the snow in the Southwest. I knew the weather tended towards snow and cold here, but the juxtoposition of ice and snow on cactus and adobe is just strange to my eyes.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Mistakes We Make

I'm beginning to wonder if that decision I made is going to affect me for the rest of my life.

I'm finishing a book now, The Memory Keepers Daughter. The basic premise is that a man makes a choice thinking he is doing the best for himself and his family, but it's an immoral choice, and he hides it from everyone but one person. The outcome of that decision haunts him for the rest of his life, destroys his family. You know, the typical "immoral secrets are a bitter poison" storyline.

But it got me thinking---what are the secrets in my life that could potentially haunt me? Have I made these decisions yet? Already, is a small secret, a choice, a decision, burrowing its way into my soul, making me bitter, unforgivable, angry? Has something I've already done begun to sour my future?

I can think of a few things.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


This is our first Christmas Tree.

So. Cute.

So far the animal house has been good to the tree---only minimal knocking of ornaments and all the precious ones are to high for their little paws and noses to get to.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Roughly 49 to Go

I went to a sheep roast/camping trip at the family ranch of my dear friend BDH this past weekend with 20 or so of his closest friends/neighbors/work associates. I had an absolutely phenomenal time. Here's the scene:

Let me just say, fresh roasted sheep on an open spit is delish! Mouthwatering, really. So tender and rare. The only thing that fazed me for a BRIEF second were the hooves still attached to the legs in the pan. BUT that didn't stop me from eating the delicious thigh meat!!!!

So yes, the food rocked, not to mention the fun we had camping. BDH is in his thirties, so being slightly older than me means that many of his contemporaries have small children. So of course, there were lots of young children running around with dirty faces and bare feet, not wearing pants. Dogs (who normally probably look well groomed in their homes) fought over carcasses and growled at each other with a wild look in their eyes. At one point, after a few beers, we climbed a rickety old ladder into an old water tank and pounded out primal rhythms with our hands and chanted. The stars in the sky were amazing.

At one point in the night, someone brought out their guitar (and BDH pulled out his accordion) and we all stood around the fire and sang songs. And this old Tracy Chapman song got pulled out of my distant memory--"Talking About a Revolution."

And it hit me. This is what I am missing in my life. Revolution, social justice in a Real Way, not just the lip service I toss around in my politically correct world. My friends in Tucson are and activists, working for change, full of idealism and ideas. I heard words and phrases tossed around that I had not heard since I left town---things like "sustainable development" and "straw-bale houses."

Where do I find that vibrancy here?

I have gotten complacent in my life, I think. I have become too self-righteous in my smug life, and I feel the tug of dissatisfaction. How is it that I no longer get my hands dirty in this world, but sit behind a desk and answer the telephone or on the couch watching TV?

Yes, I have a low income, I have financial responsibility, I have pets, I am busy. But these are not reasons for complacency. They are just excuses.

And I will not use them any longer.

This year has been hard. Living in a new, lonely city with a new husband who is gone more than he is home and a neurotic dog that eats everything is not ideal. But maybe what I am learning (every so slowly) is that life is never ideal, it just is. We all make compromises in our lives each and every day to do what we have to do to fill that void, whatever it is.

Like every year, I continue to be amazed at the generosity of my friends, who at this point are scattered across the United States. I rely on them for so much and so often, it feels like I am not able to adequately return the favor. You know who you all are and I love you so much.

So every year as my birthday nears, as I look back on my life, this year I am not satisfied. And so, I choose to look forward. I can no longer wait for my life to begin, but must begin to actually live it.

Today's Birthday Dec 1:
What a testament you are to your family. This year you take whatever legacy you were given and spiff it up until it shines. Accolades and applause follow! The winter smiles on your romantic realm. Your tenderness is appreciated. A February investment pays so well! Gemini and Aquarius people are contributors to your bottom line.