Saturday, December 26, 2015

An Uncommon Christmas

Christmas day was unusual here. Too warm.

It was record setting, in the 60s, and warmer than in L.A. where we had just spent the prior weekend having an early Christmas with Tom and Greg and Zaneta.

I gardened on Christmas day. In shirtsleeves, without a jacket.

Well, I mostly just puttered, putting away new garden tools and gloves that Santa brought, and potting up a little holly plant.

Christmas day was also disrupted here.

We were supposed to have dinner at my sister's but she decided at the last minute to spend the holiday in the hospital, giving all of us a terrible scare and a lot of worry.

She is okay, but while our dinner was disrupted, her holiday was a disaster. Thank god for the nurses and doctors and everyone else who works Christmas shifts to help others.

Today we'll go to Massachusetts to celebrate with Hope and Steve and it is another unusually warm winter day. What is going on? All over the east coast the temperatures are bizarrely spring-like.

It's been way too warm for many days, and the winter weeds (popweed, creeping charlie, etc.) are greening up and spreading. The early irises and the daffodils and alliums are all peeking up out of the soil. The snowdrops went by and have wilted.

'Dawn' viburnum, which has never flowered much in past springs, has pink buds opening all over it and is threatening to burst into full bloom before New Year's Eve.

The lawns are all green, the Christmas wreaths are brown, and the whole season is out of kilter. I've never seen the holiday greenery go by so fast. The wreaths are dried out and have to come down already.

Under the windows on the front of the house, below the desiccated wreaths, the pink blooming heath is in full flower.

The holiday has been uncommonly strange this year. But despite the odd weather, brown wreaths, untimely health problems and missed dinners, there was one event that put Christmas day into perfect balance: I am going to have a new daughter in law. An engagement ring under the tree, a happy phone call, and excitement all around!