Simple Pleasures in the Bleak Mid-Winter

~  The stark beauty of a monochromatic landscape
Gray on white.
It is austere, no doubt,
but awesome in its austerity.

~ Camisoles: the cold girl’s bosom buddy

~ Thick knit socks

~ Modulating up one half-step on the last verse of a hymn.

~  Sustaining words (from my husband’s mouth/pen/keyboard)

~  Non-complicated tax return
(this is one chore I truly enjoy.)

~  Accessible audio books. 
Hope has a great resource list.

~  New Costco throw rugs on a cold tile floor.

~  Baby’s breath (why can’t it stay sweet like this forever?)

~ Wood stove crankin’

~ Ultrasonic humidifier

~ Chicken cashew stir-fry
(onions, mushrooms, celery, bell pepper,
bean sprouts, broccoli, shredded cabbage,
bite-size chicken and generous amount of cashews.
Fry in small dollop of oil.
Add soy/tamari/Bragg’s.
Serve over rice.) 

What simple pleasure do you enjoy?

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15 thoughts on “Simple Pleasures in the Bleak Mid-Winter

  1. I LOVE your list and relate to several. A pleasure I received yesterday, though not related particularly to winter, was connecting on Facebook with a former student who graduated high school in 1976! She is now singing in her church choir and credits me with teaching her how to sing. She found me because she had connected with one of my sons who was in her class – saw me as a “friend” on his page. Just one of the gun things about Facebook.

  2. Lovely list!  I was going to add a nourishing book with a cup of tea, but I see that’s already been taken.  One of my greatest pleasures is lying down on a really good mattress and pillow after a hard day’s work.  We skimp on everything, but I’m sure glad we didn’t skimp on those items.

  3. I love your list!For me today the pleasures will be:An open fire and a book by Dick Francis.Knitting on a wool afghan.Wearing hand-knit wool socks and hand-knit wool cardigan.A gray, rainy day.Coffee until 10:00 a.m.A glass of pinot noir at 8:00 p.m.Your stir-fry sounds wonderful – I may have to ask my kitchen-duty daughter to make that tonight for supper!

  4. Fresh ginger pieces steeped in hot water–my winter hydration solution–I drink it all day long.The pleasure of turning spent apples into a delicious apple cake.  (Hannah, can you hear me?)Walking in the winter woods with my boys.The exquisite blue of a January sky on a sunny day.Listening in on imaginary play between a 10 and 12 year old.Watching Monk or Mr. Bean and laughing out loud with the whole family.Carol–Have you ever read “When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit” by Judith Kerr? 

  5. I love your list along with the photo.  After 3 weeks of inversion we have blue sky today, that in itself is enough to make one spirits lift!  I am thankful and enjoying good teachers today, starting with Spurgeon this morning and moving on to George Grant this afternoon, studying the Crusades.  Also, endless pots of Glengetti tea.  Thanks for the dinner idea, may I ask what Bragg’s is?  And is the soy, soysauce?

  6. Making silly, funny faces at a 9-mo-old and watching him throw his head back and laugh at me, so I can see his 3 new teeth on top…Watching the U.S. Figure Skating Championships on TV and loving the beauty of it all…Enjoying the luxury of twice-baked potatoes from my favorite grocery store w/ butter, sour cream, bacon bits and cheese that I can just heat in the microwave for dinner…Jasmine Downy Pearls tea from Peet’s Coffee & Tea that my brother sent me for Christmas…

  7. Peppermint Mocha Latte, tastes like Christmas. Re-reading old books, like visiting long lost friends. Throwing the ball for a corgi who is addicted to getting the ball; throw, get, throw, get. How simple! Good music, playing and listening to, even if difficult, playing is rewarding. Snow stacked up on tree branches, then suddenly falling in a powder puff explosion. Horses who greet you every time you open the back door, I know they just want their dinner BUT the greeting is pleasure! Old movies especially when it’s snowing and cold outside and you can snuggle under an afghan with your sweetie and watch together. ‘Eavesdropping’ on students as they work together on their school work, this ALWAYS brings a smile to my face!I’m going to have to try the stir fry, too tempting!

  8. ~delicious things simmering in the crock pot or in big pots on the stove~flannel sheets and heaps of blankets and my honey to snuggle with~bird tracks in the snow~candlelight~knowing my little chicks are snug in their beds~houses in the dark with warm yellow light coming through the windows

  9. @hopeinbrazil – We have a good mattress too…well, we really like it.  It is EXTRA firm and doesn’t cave in in the middle.@LauraLLD –  I’ve never heard of Dick Francis.  More research to do!  I like gray rainy days too.  Right now, rain sounds remarkably wonderful.  I always loved the English moors in the BBC movies.@Lynn in WI – tomorrow I’m going to try the ginger water.  Sounds intriguing.  I’m in the habit of drinking cran-water (diluted 100% cranberry juice with water).  Initially it disgusted me, but I kind of like it now!  Are you still running, Lynn?  And I have NOT read (or even heard of) Hitler and Pink Rabbits book.  Do you recommend it?@LimboLady – Your brother sends you TEA?  Now I’m threatening to adopt your dad AND your brother or make them adopt me!!  When I read your first sentence, I could just SEE it all clearly!@applechexx – I didn’t remember that you had a corgi.  When I was growing up we had a Welsh Corgi named Joshua who was the best dog pet in the world.  I’m misting up thinking about him.  Powder puff snow explosions, cuddling under blankets, and students’ conversations…girl, your life is chock full of great things!@Faith Proctor – If I’m not mistaken, I live about three hours west of you.  We had blue sky today too!  It. Was. Glorious.  Very, very cold but lovely crystal-clear, washed-out denim sky.  Glengetti tea is another research project for me.  It does sound almost… Scottish?  It sounds yummy.  Bragg’s Liquid Aminos is a soy sauce-like concoction.  When I met many dear friends 16 years ago, it was the “accepted” substitute for soy sauce.  I succombed to peer pressure and have used it ever since.  It’s the kind of thing you would find in a health food store or order from Azure Standard (a health food wholesaler).  [Tamari sauce is soy sauce made without wheat.]@womanofthehouse – I love everything on your list, but especially yellow light coming through the windows.

  10. -discovering that folgers in the percolator is really just as good as the Caribou in the french press if you squint your eyes just a little and add a tablespoon. [1 for the pot].-putting baby E’s tub in the BIG tub for the first time today… and watching his perplexed little face work SO hard not to cry.-knowing we’re in a job transition in a complicated marked, but being certain that our needs will be met. that is grace.-watching the 9 year old FINALLY understand borrowing from the 100’s column if there’s a zero in the tens…-writing a blog and knowing people actually stop by – this is new, and fun.-wendell berry. and friends with whom to process Hannah.

  11. @magistramater – Yes it is! (Life, full of great things!) My corgi is the Pembroke variety, the smaller of the 2 Welsh Corgi varieties. She’s a kick in the pants. We wonder what we used to laugh at! I ordered her when her mama was a baby! Boy are they smart dogs! Everyone raves about the Border Collie and they are smart as well but I think a Corgi is 1 chromosome away from being able to talk! Her name is Taffy but one of my students, (the son of a mutual friend from Wallowa who has such beautiful long hair, now,) calls her Speed Bump!

  12. One simple pleasure come rain, snow, sun or wind – a head massage… I can add in the same line – a back scratch, a foot massage; but the head massage…sigh… I’m not so sure if the adjective “simple” defines the doer, but it sure does defines the receiver

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