Sunday, December 21, 2014


“and life comes to one, as we dance on, dance on.” – ee cummings

Last night was the longest night of the year. We lit candles all over the house and had a big fire in the woodstove. We talked about this past year. We talked about the year to come. It was a good night to reflect and dream. I’ve read things recently that suggest our ancestors had a conviction that this was the time of year to do nothing. To stop. And it’s really interesting to note that before I heard this I’ve been having the urge to do just that. Nothing. No writing. No drawing or painting. Of course, the animals still need to be fed and the water situation still needs to be addressed. The Ranch still has its needs. It doesn’t stop. But I can at least slow down. But last night we did as the ancestors did. We just stopped.
I think the seasons are a wheel that slows more and more until it finally stops. All day yesterday it was stopped. Now, today, it starts up again. But slowly. It slowly gains momentum as the sun gains strength. Yes, the coldest days are yet to come. Yes, winter is probably going to be at her worst in the coming month but we’re ready. We’re still here and we have enough and we’re going to make it. It’s not even Christmas yet. We’re looking forward to the celebration of the new born baby who brought light and love to the world. But I can see why long ago the people who were in control moved that lustrous holiday a few notches over from the Solstice. The Solstice is very, very powerful and I wouldn’t want to be associated with it if I was trying to start a new tradition. It would be so confusing. So we get to have two powerful traditions right in the darkest time of the year. Can you really imagine life without these traditions? I can’t. I would be super depressed and looking around to make something up to replace them.
To be sure the Solstice has lost some of it’s validity in the world. At least, here in the good ole U.S. of A.  But here on the ranch it still has sway. We sort of, in a way, endure winter out here and count the days until the warm days begins again. The Solstice marks the change. On the day after we remind ourselves that the warmth is only a few months away and the dark season is beginning to end. We’re cycling back.
Here are a few images from the ranch that remind me that circles are so very much a part of life. Something begins, something ends, everything eventually comes around to where it began.

A Fairy Ring of Mushrooms

Woodpecker Holes

A Stone Splashes into the Pond


  1. The solstice this year is also Hanuman's birthday. I heard a Vedic astrologer today that also explained that by the configuration of the stars we are receiving lots of blessings during this time. Christmas brings many blessings too. Hope they all find their way to your door. Happy Holidays my friend.

  2. I believe it! This is little but I had a $1 scratcher on my desk for months. I don't know what I was waiting for to cash it. Two days ago I cashed it in and guess what? For a $1 purchase I got $20! I scratched #11 as the winning number and by golly ALL the numbers on the scratcher were 11! Then I played that $20 on an online racetrack bet and won $40! Cue the Outer Limits theme song. Happy Holidays to you, too!

  3. The thought that older generations believed that this is the time of year to do nothing is intriguing. Of course, our society does not allow for that kind of thinking (unless, of course, you live on an isolated California ranch). I have been sidelined by surgery a week ago and have found myself doing next to nothing and being the culturated person that I am (along with, I suspicion, undiagnosed hyper-active), I have found this very difficult. But I admire your ability to light the candles and fire and just sit back.....keep on doing nothin--except for blogging so that those of us looking for something to do will have something good to read.

  4. I wonder if I can do online betting in TN?

  5. I think that doing nothing is an intriguing idea, too! And, trust me, doing nothing on a ranch is not easy to do. Even on holidays the animals want to be fed and so forth. Yet no matter where we are I think it's important to be still a bit now and then. If nothing else just to allow the thoughts to percolate up through the mind. Maybe something important to act upon will appear. Here's a wish for your speedy recovery! And sure, go ahead and place that bet!