This morning brought a bright white fog. This winter is so tone-on-tone. White on white on white on grey. The inside of my farm truck frosts up. The farm dog's black fur was edged with white frost this morning when he joined me for our morning ritual of moving the horses out of the pens where they spend all night staying warm by eating hay.
It is cold out, but not too cold. Not impossible.
There are so many chores to do. Hay bales to be thrown down out of the loft into the back of my truck and distributed. An oat bin whose lid has blown off and has filled with snow. Beet pulp and molasses and new halters to be unloaded from the back of my car.
Today I received three wonderful pieces of mail. The first was a Christmas card and letter from dear friends who live in a house nestled into a hillside in southern Alberta. They are going about their daily life on their farm: caring for horses, collecting eggs from the coop. And then an envelope of two letters from a friend and past roommate who lives downtown. Her life is so different from theirs, but the common thread seems to be: we are all just trying to get our work done and be happy. And we've all got varying levels of success. But I worry about her, sometimes. The third envelope held gifts that same friend made me this spring. A small, handmade notebook and a handmade card that doubles as a coaster (I hadn't thought to use it as one, but she wrote, ps: you can also use this card as a coaster for your beer). I am so lucky to have such a friend. Her gentle skill with paper and fabric is such a gift.
Now I wonder what I will send to her. What handmade treasures I can find in my home out here in the wilderness to bring countryside to her downtown apartment.
Also, there's this: tonight my sisters and mom are coming to sleep over at my house. They are romanticized by my country dwelling. I am so happy to have them here. Their willingness to come assuages my fear that no one will ever visit me out here, that I will feel lonely and isolated, and so removed from the life I created in my busy city community.
I hold in my heart the kind of excitement kids feel on Christmas Eve. It's good to feel this way.