Friday, February 7, 2014


It snows here.   Life has to go on, and it does.  

I channel my inner Maggie O'Connell, get dressed, and do life.  The toughness of winter weather reminds me good things about myself.  I'm strong and resilient.  I can go out and shovel or blow a foot of snow off the driveway or stack a half-cord of firewood, one woman against the elements, me all muscle and determination and snot, in a blinding snowstorm, while inside I'm simmering hearty stew and baking fresh bread for dinner.   I'm reaching near-native levels of expertise at driving on roads ankle deep in fresh powder, even in my rear-wheel drive truck.  

(I shouldn't brag though because that's such an invitation for disaster.  Cover your ears, fate!)

Harsh winter reminds me that I'm cozy by nature, but not a bit fragile.  I appreciate the warmth of my home more deeply in contrast to the starkness and danger of what's right outside the doors and windows, and feel that contrast most alive and real when I put myself in the middle of the biting, stinging, breath-grabbing hardness of midwestern winter once a day and come back inside wet and cold and breathing hard, renewed.  

Outside, I notice the ache of my back, the feel of my breath, hot and steaming against a wool scarf wrapped up twice around my nose and mouth, and how the hat my mother knitted me when I was Bean's age flattens my hair out and covers my ears, leaving a line between dry and wet, right at the folded, cabled edges her needles wrought.  My fingers ache and burn with cold, even double-layered in mittens over gloves, and they're stiff but they do the work well, maybe because of and not in spite of the stiffness.  

Inside, I'll warm and calm, poke the fire up, stir dinner, wipe streams from my eyes and nose, fold softness around the people I love.  Dream, hope, plan.   

I'm real flesh and blood, these feelings all human and natural.  
I am human and natural.  
I overcome.  I recover.  


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  1. So beautiful. I love you and all your strong, lovely humanity.

  2. I love this! Love your outfits too, both of them, and especially the contrast between the two outfits! The colours of the second outfit are so soft and lovely. *sigh* I feel so unglamorous looking at the photos. I'm wearing fluffy socks, jeans with a stain of unknown origin on one leg, a WELL faded red (maternity) top with a lil splash of baby sick on one shoulder, and I have not brushed my hair today (it's 3.30pm). *siiiiiiigh* But I love your look! :)

  3. you are strong, resilient and beautiful! (& able to make standing next to a bathtub look chic!) ;) ~CA

  4. GOOD HEAVENS, you are gorgeous. These pictures and outfits capture you just right, so lovely. I love your heart and your words, too. Thank you for that - I need the inspiration to keep trudging through this harder-than-most winter.

  5. You DO overcome and recover...all the while being fabulously dressed. ;)

    Please come to my house and help me with my closet!!!

    1. You always look amazing, JJ. You don't need me!

  6. Two fabulous outfits love the way you layered them!

    1. Thanks Nicole. Layers are my love language.

  7. I love this. Omigoodness. I love this so much.

  8. Super cute boots! I guess I shouldn't complain about the 50+ degree weather we're having along with (finally, thank God) rain.