The Reluctant Writer: Something Else to do When I Should Be Writing

December 25, 2009

Happiness, busy-ness, stillness, and peace — from Muddy Ford

Filed under: Christmas,New Brookland Tavern — cynthiaboiter @ 15:34
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All the members of the Boiter-Jolley clan enjoy the luxury of a happily busy life.  We’ve always been that way, even when Annie & Bonnie were little girls and their days were spent in ballet and orchestra and book club and t-ball, etc.  Now, as adults, they are busier than ever, just like me and Bob.   For us, sleep has always been something that we surrendered to — our beds seldom seeing us before 2 am.  There is just so much to do in the world — so much to see and enjoy — life doesn’t give us enough hours — we are forced to cheat time whenever we can.

But there are two days out of the year that we deemed sacred many years ago — days when we wear our pajamas all day and when the term busy just doesn’t apply.  Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.  On these days, the world doesn’t matter — there is an invisible force field between the Ford and the rest of civilization.  We eat when we’re ready — we wear what feels comfy — we do whatever we want.  It is nothing less than joyous and we have observed this special ritual of removing ourselves from the world on these two days for many, many years now.

But I don’t take it for granted.  My little girls have grown to women now.  One of them is in love and sharing a home with a beautiful boy.  The other will soon be out in the world, who knows where, sharing her gifts with a larger and unknown audience.  I am keenly aware of how lucky we have been to have kids who loved the home they grew up in as much as we loved watching them grow there.  But I am equally aware that someday soon, maybe even this year, the four of us will rise on Christmas morning for the last time as a family unit.  I don’t let myself think too much about the years gone by of footie pajamas and cookies left out for Santa, the letters left by the fireplace, the magic we had the pleasure of making once our girls were sleeping soundly in their beds.  Time is a mean and beautiful and hateful thing.  Sometimes it is best to just ignore it.

Because we have this year, this day — and it is glorious — I wish all of you a happy day of realizing the many beauties of your life — wherever you may find them.  Shut the world out if you can — immerse yourself in only the things that are meaningful to you.  Enjoy yourself.  Play.  If old traditions don’t work for you anymore — abandon them and make new ones.  Cultivate your own sense of happiness and peace.  It’s what we’re here for.

Merry Christmas from the gang at Muddy Ford.

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December 8, 2009

A Muddy Ford Christmas Celebration

Filed under: Christmas,Muddy Ford — cynthiaboiter @ 02:58
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I’m writing today still high on the raging Christmas Spirit so many good people were kind enough to share with me, my family, and one another last Saturday night at the annual Muddy Ford  Christmas throw down.  If you missed it this year … well, you just really missed out.

We started staging this event many years ago when the girls were still small, and it has grown in size and diversity ever since.  But one thing hasn’t changed — we do it all ourselves, with the help of a few brave friends, (thanks as always to Chuck and Kyle, and a new thanks this year to Carolyn and Mindy — cookie cookers extraordinaire), and that’s what makes it so special to us.  It is a joy.  A celebration of good fortune.  Our little prayer of thanks to the universe for giving us each other, good friends, a warm home, much love, and the knowledge that happiness is a state of being that should never be taken for granted.  We are lucky to be happy, and we know it.

I also think that the degree and intensity of happiness churning in our little home-place last Saturday might just have swelled the square footage of Muddy Ford ever so slightly — the ceilings certainly seemed a bit higher Sunday morning.  I’m not sure if it was Kristine’s cranberry walnut pie or Billy G’s chocolate-bacon-pecan cookie creations (still want the recipes to both of these, please), or if it was the gorgeous new ornaments Susan and Lee brought for our trees.  Bob’s brew was quite tasty, as was the beer that Anastasia and Roe brought and the wine too many folks showed up with, combined with what Ricky and Kaitlin had put together for us as well. There was quite a bit of age and beauty in the place (thanks to assorted dancers, college students, and beloved curmudgeons — you can decide for yourself if you fit in either or both of these categories), not to mention intellect, (if we could have gotten the academicians and intellectuals in the house to put down their glasses, we probably could have at least solved the climate crisis), and talent, (I think we had representatives from almost every arts medium — the aforementioned dance, sculpture, music, ceramics, painting, acting, textiles, poetry and prose).  There were happy old married couples, several new lovers, potential new lovers, a number of happily divorced singles, intentional singles, singles on the prowl, and quite a few matches I would have loved to have had the time to make — (the day is young, however).

Whatever the magical mystical combination of precious human contributions that came together to make the night such fun, I am just so appreciative.  Thanks to all who came out this year.  And to those of you who didn’t take that journey into the woods, there’s always next year — I hope we get to see you then.  (If we know you, you’re invited — you should all know that by now.)

So as Darion says, Joy to Your World — from the folks at Muddy Ford — those who come to visit, and those who come to stay.

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