Posted tagged ‘pepper lights’

“They talked on into the early morning, the high, pale cast of light in the windows, and they did not think of leaving.”

March 15, 2015

Yesterday it rained all day and into the evening. Much of the snow is gone and whatever is left is sad-looking, beaten down and dirty. A whole section of my backyard has reappeared, and in the front I can even see sections of my lawn on both sides of the house. The first things I saw when I went to get the papers were the white buds of the snowdrops by the steps. That made me glad. I know now the green shoots survived winter’s onslaught. Now they can thrive with the coming of spring.

I would have said today is cold, but it is actually 40˚. The chill is from the dampness. Nothing seems to dry. The rain has left the streets still wet and the above freezing temperature is melting the snow. Water is everywhere. The giant mounds on the sides of my street are shrinking, and the water from the melting snow is rolling downhill. There are no sewers so the water rolls until the hill ends and then it puddles.

My house seems coziest in the daytime darkness. I am warm and comfortable. I have plugged in the different strands of lights so the house is gently lit. The kitchen has a red glow from pepper lights. The living room has lights on branches standing in tall stoneware bottles in the corners. Small wooden houses in the dining room are lit and the light shines from their windows. The bathroom has a nightlight, a snowflake, whose season has finally passed. This room, my den, where I spend the most time has a lit lamp on the table and no other lights. It shines on the pages of my book, and that’s all I need.

At night I still like looking at the colored lights left on the deck rail and on trees in the backyard. When Gracie goes outside in the dark, she triggers her yard sensor lights. The shadows of the trees are beautiful. They stretch the width of the yard. I like to see the lights so I stand on the deck and Gracie, when she’s finished, usually joins me. We stay until the light finally goes out then we go inside the house.

“The light teaches you to convert life into a festive promenade.”

December 21, 2014

The Winter Solstice is official at 6:03 EST tonight, the longest night and the shortest day in the Northern Hemisphere. We are moving back to the light.

It always seemed unfair somehow when darkness came so early. We had the street light curfew so winter afternoons for playing outside were short, and if it was cold or snowy or windy, we sometimes didn’t go out at all. We played games, watched TV, did our homework and read. The afternoons felt endless. Supper always seemed to be late, deeper into the early evening, but it wasn’t. The early darkness fooled us.

Today is the same as yesterday, a grey day, and it’s cold so I’m glad I don’t have to go anywhere. The inside Christmas lights are lit so the house looks bright. Multi-colored lights are my favorites for the tree though I do put a strand of white lights around the trunk, starlights in the middle of the tree. My window lights are white candles, bright white candles, which shine in a circle of light above the bulbs.

It is easy to create beauty this time of year. The tree is in my living room in the same spot it always is. Sometimes I stand at the edge of the room just to look at it. I’m always taken by how lovely it looks, a bit of bias I suspect. My dining room is lit by the window candles and by the small tree in the corner. The table runner is bright red and green. The centerpiece is a tree made of blocks. Each row is a word or phrase spelled out in the blocks. All of them have to do with Christmas. It was once my mother’s. My kitchen has a red pepper bunch of lights and a string of scallop shell lights. I never mind going from room to room to turn them on. Their light is welcome especially tonight.

“A snowball in the face is surely the perfect beginning to a lasting friendship.”

December 27, 2013

Yesterday was an odd day. I never did get dressed, but I wasn’t a sloth either. I did a variety of chores. Al the bird feeders were filled, the laundry was brought up, folded and put away, the camel’s head was glued back as was the zebra’s ear. Paw prints were cleaned off the kitchen floor, and the litter boxes were emptied and refilled. It was a banner day. The funny event was when I pulled out the barrel with the bird seed in it from underneath the grill cover on the deck. A chipmunk jumped out and ran by me as if his life depended on it. The chipmunk scared me as much as I had scared him.

Last night the house was ablaze with color. The tree lights were on in both rooms as was the wooden star, a plastic Santa, shell lights, the red pepper clump in the kitchen and the snowflake night-light in the bathroom. The house looked so lovely.

I remember the tree after Christmas with the toys still underneath it. My brother and I would sit by it and play one of our new games while my sisters played dolls. New sleds had to wait for snow but new bikes could be ridden despite the cold. The excitement of counting the days and waiting and hoping was gone, but we had all these new toys, and I always had new books so we were glad. I remember sitting in bed and being cozy and warm and reading a new Trixie Belden. The day passed almost unnoticed.

If we had snow, we’d be outside sledding on the hill behind our house or making snow forts. We older kids would sled down our street if it still had a layer of snow. That was the best ride of them all. It was a huge hill. From the top, you could barely see the bottom. I’d be wearing snow pants, my winter jacket, boots, a hat and mittens. When I walked, my snow pants made a swishing noise. My mittens would get clumps of ice attached to them, and snow found its way into my boots.

I was always freezing when I finally went into the house. I had to go through the cellar and hang up my wet clothes on the laundry lines. My skin was always beet red from the cold. I’d run upstairs to my room and put on warm pajamas and my slippers then I’d sit in front of the radiator to get warm. It was always the best day.