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Sunday, January 4, 2015

Season's Greetings, A little late as usual


Well it is hard to do anything twice. I thought since people liked the yay/boo story last time I’d try to do it again. But something seems not quite right this time, and I don’t know what it is. Perhaps counting things up even in jest is not in the Christmas spirit, but Christmas is over and updates are needed at least for me.

Selling my house was one big Yay/Boo!
On May 8, at 2:00 pm I completed the sale of my house in North Hero, Vermont. This is a big “yay” and yet…after three years of trying to sell it and meeting with so many disappointments, the final sale at $98,000 of my house appraised at $158,000 was a supreme disappointment and I was only able to get through the process with much forbearance and inner eye rolling. Boo, boo-who, and yet accepting this low offer, and getting rid of the house I had worked so hard to transform from a mere summer camp into a real year-round home allowed me to be free of a life I was no longer living as a single art teacher on the island of North Hero and to freely embrace my actual current life. I haven’t been teaching art for sometime, or living in North Hero, or single. My life now is with Ross, on our land in Middlebury living in a yurt, building our honey house and cordwood house, keeping bees, and growing shiitakes. All of that is a big “yay”. I am very happy with the life I have, but letting go of the life I had was very painful, and how can I not regret that we didn’t get more money from the sale of my house that would have helped us build our house? I’m not sure I’ve had my last nightmare about it. In the aftermath I find I am able to relax into a fate less fortunate than I had hoped. My aim now is to get the house and honey house built with Ross over the next five years, hopefully by the time I’m fifty-five. I’d like my parents to live see it complete and to enjoy visiting. At the same time I’m trying to accept the fact that I may not be able to get these vital things done in time. I might be 80 and still living in a yurt. I love living in the yurt, a glorified tent, but I think when I’m older running water, a masonry stove that doesn’t need constant feeding, and a bit of solar electricity would be welcome.

Many family visits this year. Yay! Usually I get to see my family aside from Ross about once a year, but this year I had a few treasured opportunities to see lots of family at Katie (Jordon) O’hearn and Chris’s wedding, and then again at a family party in NYC hosted by Annalee VanKleeck, and then again for Thanksgiving. I am really getting used to this and have such fond memories that I hope it becomes the new normal.

Climate change is happening, Boo! The polar vortexes of last winter and the inches of ice on the ground rather than snow made spring a sad time once we saw how many hives we had lost. The changing weather can be very hard on honeybees. And now this December we are losing many trees to the heavy snow and must walk up our long driveway. Yay! But now after Christmas it’s all melting, and we will be able to drive up our driveway soon.

Yay! We had a really good honey year. There was just enough rain and sun each week all summer so that the bees could forage productively.
Yay! We got our roof on the honey house finally, which is a big relief every time it snows or rains.
Yay! New York bans fracking.
Yay! I raised enough money with my Indiegogo campaign to publish, The Literature Preferred by Wild Boar. Available soon!
Yay! We have some licorice mead brewing which I feel may be our best yet.
Yay! I’ve started a new writing/research project about the Godchaux family, my family, and Adele. The research is very interesting and absorbing to me.
Some books by family members brought to a family gathering

All in all it’s been a good year for us. Even so I find that the house selling for so little has brought home to me how I must learn to accept peacefully what is not as I want it to be. Sometimes there really is nothing you can do to make things better except to accept them as they are. Maybe it’s not so much about making things better as it is about making the best of things.
I feel very grateful for all my friends and family. Thanks for reading. Wishing us all much peace and love in 2015 and beyond.

I almost forgot to mention that this past year we had the most amazing Fall. This is Abbey Pond.