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Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Winter Solstice

(or the end of one year and the start of the next)

I'm sitting here as the sun disappears on the shortest day of the year, with a red cinnamon candle burning. Red for love, happiness, warmth, generosity. I am not sad that this year is over, though it hasn't been my worst by a long chalk. I had hoped to be a leaseholder by now, but that looks likely to happen next month so I can wait a little longer.

Unusually, I took a few extra days off work this week to give myself a longer soul holiday this year. Normally I work right up to when my employer closes for Christmas, and I would have no objection to working on Christmas day (or any other day) as long as I was compensated in some way. But this year I need to use up the leave I had been saving in order to get my kitchen re-done. I intend to use these days as soul yoga time. It's a phrase my friend Ciel came up with years ago, meaning doing things that are gentle stretches for your mind and mental health. Sometimes it can include physical activities, if your mental health responds well to them. Today I decided to go for a walk, instead of staying home all day with only the garden birds for company.

I started by taking one of our town buses to the end of its route, where I'd never been before. It was an interesting ride, and easy to know where to get off as it was a large supermarket. Then I looked at the road signs and picked a direction that would lead to somewhere I was familiar with.

I have osteoarthritis, and depending on the weather I can walk about 3 miles on a really good day before I get some pain or discomfort. Today was not a really good day, but an OK day, and my spidey senses got me onto a familiar bus route after about a mile which then gave me the confidence to take the rest of the distance one bus stop at a time. I managed about 2 miles before getting back on a bus, and I'm happy with that.

Back home, my de-stash continues; I had some dusky pink aran yarn that has now been turned into a jacket for a 2-3 year old and I finished a matching beret this afternoon. Then I started a cowl with some alpaca mix yarn which will be for a friend when we have lunch next week, and I'll try and get a pair of fairisle gloves done for the other friend who will be joining us. There is a lot of half-used 4-ply yarn left over from socks and fairisle seems a logical thing to use it all on.

And then I have a secret project that I want to work on in 2017. It involves knitting rather small things and leaving them anonymously as gifts in public places. I have been inspired by a church group who last week hung up hundreds of knitted angels around their town which were free for anyone who wanted to take one.

I think we can all give a little more next year.

Enjoy the rest of the Solstice everyone!

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