The Hillhouse

The Journey of a Mother and Son

Very Merry December 24, 2012

A sunny Christmas Eve day here in upstate New York. If chickens can know happiness, then ours are surely feeling that way now; post-morning walk in the field, they sit unmoving on their perches while our goose basks in the afternoon sun in what seems a state of contentment.

Early this morning, Elihu awoke with a start, going from a deep sleep to sitting upright in bed, eyes wide open, as if he’d just remembered something. “It’s not Christmas morning yet” I said, and he laid back down. “I know.” he said. “I was just practicing.” In a way very uncharacteristic of his usual 9 year old self, he went back to sleep.

I didn’t wait for Elihu to wake, I was happy to putter about on my own for awhile in the early morning hour and tend to the chores. As usual, I threw my on jacket and muck boots over my pajamas and went out to tend the chickens. I enjoyed the hens crowding about my feet, following my every move. I had fun plucking off the odd bird who jumped into the feed bin and tossing her out. I stomped through the night’s ice on the water trough and finished my odds and ends outside.

Elihu and I enjoyed a breakfast of scrambled eggs and hot sauce, while he told me all about different kinds of Albatrosses. We made up two fictional spoofs of bird species; the Glue-Footed Booby and the Wondering Albatross. We cracked ourselves up with all their various characteristics. A little later we went down the road to the post office to mail off a Christmas card to David Attenborough and also Elihu’s sister, who lives in England too. We were both amazed that we could mail a letter from our sleepy little town here in the country and know that before too long it will end up far across the ocean, thousands of miles away…

All the gifts have been wrapped, the plans have been made, the dishes all washed. For the first time in months, I have nothing to do, no obligations to fulfill, nowhere to be.  Later tonight we’ll go to a party of some very old friends. Tomorrow grandma and grandpa and Uncle Andrew will come over. And of course, tonight, long after we’ve fallen asleep, Santa Claus will come. This is my first Christmas ever with Elihu here, and perhaps the last Christmas that Santa will ever visit. So I feel very lucky.

And for now, I feel very merry too. I wish the same for all of you…

 

2 Responses to “Very Merry”

  1. Eric Schultz Says:

    “Have yourselves a merry little Christmas, let your hearts be light…” May your Christmas be peaceful, with love and joy throughout the week.

  2. Gene Burnett Says:

    Thanks for the card you guys and Happy Holidays to you and all the chickens…and the goose and whatever else you got up there. ;~) GB


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