Posted tagged ‘paper’

“Christmas is a season for kindling the fire for hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart.”

December 14, 2012

This morning the lawns were white with frost and the cars windows would have needed scrapping. I walked across the lawn to get my papers so I could hear the crunch, that wonderful sound a freezing night brings to the morning. I could see my breath.

This room is such a mess my sensibilities are distressed. Every spare space is filled with wrapping paper, boxes, tags and presents. They are my next week’s projects. Today is sending packages and making goodies for sister as I’ll see her tomorrow. I’ll bring her favorite fudge, a recipe from a long ago friend of my mother’s, and date-nut bread, my grandmother’s recipe. The traditions continue!

When I bought my house, I didn’t have much money. My mortgage was half my month’s salary. Everything I bought was a necessity, nothing frivolous, including furniture for a while. I had a desk, a TV and a studio couch in this room and some pots and pans for the kitchen. I ate, slept and watched TV here in the den. The rest of the house was pretty empty. That first Christmas I bought a small tree. My mother gave me some ornaments, and I bought a couple of strings of lights. One night I went about making paper garlands out of construction paper. I cut the paper into strips then the strips into smaller strips. I used tape to connect the small strips to one another. There were four garlands, each a different length with the shortest at the top and the longest at the bottom. They were perfect on the tree, being colorful and making the tree more festive and hiding the lack of ornaments. I used those garlands for a lot of years. One Christmas a few years later I was sitting in the living looking at the tree, a taller one with more decorations, when I heard a strange sound from the tree, and then I heard another. I investigated and found my garlands were breaking apart. The tape had yellowed and lost its ability to hold the strips together. I grabbed my favorite tool, my stapler, and used it to keep the garlands together. It worked.

A year later when I was bringing out my tubs of decorations, I noticed the garlands had just about completely fallen apart, and, for the first time, I noticed how faded the colors had become. It didn’t matter to me, though, as I still hung the smallest of the garlands on the tree that Christmas. I still have that garland.


“I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.”

February 19, 2011

Spring has returned to wherever it goes during winter. The wind is wild and cold. Outside my widow the world looks most uninviting. Earlier, I went to my local Border’s as their closing sale began today. I hate losing it.

Paper will soon be obsolete. Bookstores are closing. When was the last time any of us wrote a letter on real paper? How about a diary? I remember writing in my diary. I wrote longingly about the boy who was my latest crush and I wrote sad descriptions of my latest teen angst, the sort that made my world fall apart. The key was always carefully hidden to keep the diary from prying eyes. When I traveled, I kept a journal, still do. Every night I write of the sights and the sounds and draw easily from my memories of the day. I have some aerogrames I wrote to my parents from Africa. They are filled with descriptions of my life in Ghana, and when I read them, I am pulled back to those days through my own words. There is something so personal about holding those letters as I read them.

The computer has made it so easy to write and to publish, sort of. I know this blog has become my diary, and I share with all of you. I write almost every day about all sorts of things, but the most personal parts of my life aren’t here. I hold them close to my heart. They are the feelings that filled my diary, the one with the key.