I wanted to share my Top Five favorite things about this particular Holiday Season:
1. Our new kitty, Hope, sits on top of the world! We adopted 5-year old Hope in September, and she came to us extremely fearful, nervous, and skittish, and spent the first couple of weeks as she had spent much of her previous life…hiding behind or under something. Over the past several months, I have had the absolute pleasure of watching Hope totally come into her own! She plays by herself, with my other kitty Abbye, vies with Abbye for lap space, sleeps with me every night, and has completely come out of hiding. Her new favorite spot is atop all of the boxes that the Christmas tree lights and ornaments came out of. She has decided in her new found celebration of life that she wants to see life from the highest perch she can find! Watching her and being in her presence reminds me daily to celebrate life, it’s wonder, and all of the joys contained within.
2. Bundling up and going for walks and hikes in the wind, rain, and snow! I love to walk outside, regardless of the weather. This year in particular I am enjoying exploring new places (like Chuckanut Mountain, the site of a half-marathon I have signed up for in February!), Lookout Mountain, and of course Lake Padden, Taylor Dock in Fairhaven, and other trails in and around Bellingham. I love to walk with friends, family, and especially alone. Connecting with nature on a regular basis, especially at this time of year when the weather is so wild, makes me feel alive, alert, invigorated, and totally in the game of life!
3. Doing Out-call Massages!I have had the pleasure recently of doing more out-call massages (massaging people in their homes), and I am really enjoying it. I love looking at the houses with their Christmas lights as I travel to and from various locations in Bellingham, and it is an honor and a privilege to enter into and share someone’s space of dwelling and be able to deliver the gift of massage to a person in their own home!
4. Enjoying the Christmas tree that my daughter and I cut down all on our own! I live with my 23 year old daughter, Shannon, and she and I cut down and put up the Christmas tree all on our own this year. It may sound corny, but I have always relied on having the assistance of a strong male to help with this in the past, and we decided it was time to take matters into our own hands. Kudos to Shannon for getting down and dirty and chopping the tree down, as I am not sure I could have pulled my body together after that type of endeavor. It was a fun and bonding experience for us, and I am so enjoying contemplative evenings sitting in the dark with just tree lights and candles and some Christmas music playing.
5. Participating in Traditions with Family! We always bake Christmas cookies at this time of year, and deliver them to friends and family… We always head down to Seattle on Christmas Eve with cookies in hand for the big Tupper Family traditional Christmas Eve celebration… We always open presents and sing Christmas carols and reminisce about Christmas’s past. This year, for the second in a row, we will divide up and sing “The Twelve Days of Christmas” without my dad, who died two years ago…and we will remember his enthusiasm for all the things about this time of year that matter most…the love of family, being together, and celebrating another day, another year, and just what a pleasure it is to be alive and smiling!