In full swing after 30 years.

In full swing after 30 years.

About 30 years ago, we got a porch swing.  A few years earlier, we had purchased our first house, a modest old Dutch Colonial with lots of charm hidden behind its 1960’s updates.  It had a large front porch - deep enough to gather with friends or spend time in solitude, contemplating life.   

The swing didn’t cost us a dime - a good thing in those early days of parenthood and home-ownership.  We got the swing with coupons.  My in-laws ran a corner grocery store, and the manufacturers’ coupons they collected from customers could be redeemed for merchandise.  Like S&H green stamps for small businesses.  I had helped to organize the coupons so I got to pick my prize.     

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One step at a time.

One step at a time.

This past Tuesday, November 8th, was a big day … my birthday.  Oh yeah, and that other big thing.  But enough about other things…

A quick back story to this blog is that I recently wrote an election day op-ed piece asking my husband to rebuild our basement stairs for my birthday. (You can read it here:  http://www.thewellnestedlife.com/november-8-commentary/)

You can see in this before picture the current state of “astairs.” You have to duck your head to clear the overhead joist, and if you have a basket of laundry, tuck it up to clear your knees.  I can handle the head-ducking OK, but ducking and tucking at the same time is hard - like the concrete basement floor below.  Every time I head down with my arms full, I worry that this is the time my neck and my knees will protest and send me flailing.

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A gardener's favorite season.

As a gardener here in the northeast, winter isn’t exactly my favorite season.  Other than drooling over the seed catalogs that get sown in my January mailbox, there’s not much to do, garden-wise.  Instead of transplanting perennials, I’m moving snow again from the sidewalk to the … well, wherever I can find a place that doesn’t already have a three foot pile.  For me, digging in the snow is not at all as satisfying as digging in the earth.  And it’s surreal to imagine that all that dirty wet stuff will actually give way to a lawn and beautiful blooms in too many long months. 

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House guests. The calm before and after the storm.

Written before the storm:

Usually, I have a bit of the slob thing going on at home.  Today, even the electrical cord to the pencil sharpener has been dusted.   Not that my house guests - my mom and sister, due in tomorrow  - would mind a little lived-in ambiance, but I’m so excited to have them here, I can’t help myself. 

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Being WellNested means not filling up your living room with fireplace smoke a week before you have company.

Patience is a virtue, they say.  So is paying attention, say I.   This week I learned why I need to practice more of both. 

Our old house has a wonderful wood-burning fireplace that we fitted with an energy- efficient insert. In the winter, we enjoy clean fires on a regular basis.  In the fall, we’ll delay turning on the gas heat, and light-up the fireplace to take the chill out of the house.  Last Saturday was such a day.  

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