The year that was. The year that will be?

I hope everyone celebrating/marking Christmas had an enjoyable day. I didn’t grow up with the holiday – I think I got my first tree around age 28 at my then-husband’s suggestion – and I think I see it more from the outside in. In any case, we have our rituals (a tree is a big one), ate well, and had sufficient leftovers to see us through Sunday.

But I woke up Saturday morning very twitchy – not sure what to do with myself. The days continue to be very short on light here: sun rises around 8:15, sets around 4:15. I ended up taking the dog for his annual long Boxing Day walk and then …

I decided to dig up the incredibly irritating stepping stones in the garden (see pic – if you look at the left side back you can see a pile of stones). Once I had done that, I felt so much better. On Sunday, I had to go buy a hoe, as I didn’t own one, to start to break up the pieces of sod (our soil is heavy clay) and remove all kinds of interesting things in preparation for my loose plan to sort the garden.

This year. I know we have a few more days of it but sometimes when I think about it, I just sit there blank-eyed with my mouth open.

I tried to write about the experience of this year and my hopes for 2021 but I just can’t. It’s all too raw and unclear and close to the bone.

So, I’ll just wish you all safe and well.

  • gwenyth says:

    2020? The year has been “interesting”….but not all of it has been bad/discouraging/disheartening. I have had time to read, devote time to things that have enriched me spiritually, enjoyed my large perfume collection(!), spent actual quality time with my husband — and Dog Walks!! We have two wonderful Husky dogs which we ‘inherited’ from our son. It was to be a temporary situation…but is now 8 years later and is permanent, yes? The four of us have been taking daily walks and we have benefitted from the exercise, fresh air and communication. (The dogs don’t talk much, but they listen, smile and nod…)
    The result? — at the end of 2020 I look back and choose to see many good things: people adapting and growing in positive ways, people doing good, and people making the best of a bad situation.
    I hope to continue the positive in 2021.

  • Dina C. says:

    This year in our family our two kids, 23 and 20, are getting better at adulting in spite of the covid restrictions. Hubby has lost around 25 lbs. from all the dog walks he’s taken. As for me, I’ve been singing a lot — live streaming in an almost empty church sanctuary — and that’s been really rewarding. For 2021 I want to accomplish more around the house and sniff more scents. Way, way behind on those.

  • Kathleen says:

    Walking with my dog has always been my saving grace. I love him (and past dogs) so much; their company is the greatest pleasure combined with fresh air, exploring, and nature. Moving meditation it has been called. And I plan to try my hand at (simple) gardening for the first time this summer. We set aside space in our backyard at our newly built home to plant tomatoes and peppers in a garden box to begin with.
    Best wishes to all for a better year ahead!

    • Cinnamon says:

      That: moving meditation. Dog walking, at least round here, involves both physical movement and mental activity. Sometimes I plan a walk; sometimes I go to a particular starting place with him and see where time leads us. Best wishes regarding the garden. You might consider adding nasturtium to the boxes (they have lovely flowers that are edible — great addition to salads).

  • March says:

    I think “raw and unclear” is an apt summation. I love those short, sweet projects like the stepping stones that allow you to expend some energy and produce immediate results.

    • Cinnamon says:

      I just sort of got lost trying to think of something to write and that’s where I washed up. Well, I’ve now got to clear the area I dug up of roots and grass bits. But, I have a vague vision of a pergola once I’m much further along …

  • Musette says:

    daNABBIT! 3 comments and each time I’ve forgotten to tell you how adorable (and how miserable 😉 Joe looks in his antlers! I tried that on TGirl/Jane and she let me… but she also let me know with That Look that if she got ahold of those antlers they would be torn to shreds!


  • Portia says:

    Gardening is the cure all panacea. I’m glad you got out into it and made some headway Cinnamon.
    Portia xx

    • Cinnamon says:

      According to Monty Don, gardening is the thing that keeps us going. He once wrote that he gardened his way out of depression. So, indeed maybe so. The daffodils are starting to poke up here, as are the bluebells. I’ve planted some things and forgotten about where so will have nice surprises into the spring.

      • Musette says:

        Yep! supposedly there are ‘thingies’ in the soil that help alleviate depression and anxiety (I know what those ‘thingies’ are but can’t bring them to mind on just one cup of coffee, sorry) I keep my own sanity (such as it is) at this time of year by planning my veg garden for Spring and sorting seeds. xoxoxo

  • Musette says:

    what a weird year. and you’re not the only one whom Saturday found kind of twitchy – TGirl found herself on the other end of a leash for the bulk of the day (not that she was complaining – but I think she was a bit startled)… here’s hoping for a better year coming up! xoxoxo

    • Cinnamon says:

      So, long walks? Joe and I did a walk through a village that ends at a concrete walkway above the estuary (called the Goat Walk). That cheered us up significantly.

      • Musette says:

        absolutely! For awhile I was confining us to the park, which is a scant 140′ away from our house (and the park itself can be bisected in 5 minutes at an ambling pace) – but as both of us are regaining hip flexibility I’ve extended it to ‘downtown’ (this ‘city’, bless its hort, has 1,400 people and is 4square miles. A Rod could stand on my sidewalk and hit the gas station!) It really has helped, just those 3 extra blocks!! xoxoxo

  • Tara C says:

    This year is one best left buried in the back garden. My hopes for 2021 are a return to some semblance of normal life by this summer, but I’m not counting on anything.

    • Cinnamon says:

      We can but hope. I think that’s pretty much the deal. Sun is out here, so that help.

    • Ariel says:

      Well, now I want to write down all the things that made me furious this year and then bury them in the backyard. Hopefully 2021 will pay attention.