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The earache is better, but doctors so often just seem useless, don’t they? I have been feeling homesick for my childhood Christmases. I have always loved Christmas, but it feels so different now, without parents or grandparents, with my brother and his family so far away, with living alone, with so much work, with MKL busy at his house, and Kelsea so close to gone and so caught up in her own life. I have been away from ex-Pat for five years now, but Christmas at my ex-house was also such a cosy thing.

I can’t capture the same feeling of wonder and delight I used to have, and that makes me sad. It makes me wonder if perhaps I should lower my expectations for how I will feel. I expect to feel as I used to, and I don’t. It’s a quieter feeling, very poignant. Sigh. Perhaps this weekend, when I go to experiment with taking pictures of the lights in Denver, of the tree in the Hotel Boulderado, and finish shopping and wrapping and decorating, I will be a bit more aligned with the times. Or perhaps I need to focus more on the true meaning of the season. And start some new traditions with MKL. I shall think on these things.

IMG_6861

Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas, for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry and in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love….If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you.” — Rosemarie Urquico

Daily gratitudes:
That Mr. Man puts his paw on my arm when he wants to be petted
That I dreamed about my house for the first time last night
That Kelsea is done with her finals
My Mother’s nativity set from Italy that she splurged on when she was first married
Tidying up

It has been an in-depth day, which I will share later, but visions of water and beauty have played a large part, as they do in all of this lovely world. And so tonight, I share this with you.

Marina Cay
Marina Cay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “Nature loves courage. You make the commitment and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. Dream the impossible dream and the world will not grind you under, it will lift you up. This is the trick. This is what all these teachers and philosophers who really counted, who really touched the alchemical gold, this is what they understood. This is the shamanic dance in the waterfall. This is how magic is done. By hurling yourself into the abyss and discovering its a feather bed.” — Terence McKenna

Daily gratitudes:
Leftover mounds of snow that look like purposeful sculptures
Chickens roaming in yards
Journeys
Learning
KaVita Probiotic Sparkling Coconut Water

 

It was cloudy here today, lowering clouds that made my spirits droopy. But I lay on the grass and read while MKL tried to get one of the fleet to start, so all in all, it was a lovely day.  It would have been nice to have been laying on the sand at Long Bay Beach, but we did squeeze in a little sun. This Long Bay Beach is by the Beef Island Airport, and is not well-known, so it is never crowded. It has deep, soft, white sand, and a snorkeling trail, and you have to venture down a muddy road to access it. It’s a quintessential Caribbean spot.

Long Bay Beach

Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “Be yourself. Unless you can be a unicorn. In that case, you should always be a unicorn.” — Elle Lothlorien

Daily gratitudes:
Grass
Finding special gifts for people you love
Storm clouds
Grits
Vivid dreams

 

I love it when the beach chairs match the sea.

Little Apple Bay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “Every living thing requires love to survive for without it, we die.”  —  Sanjo Jendayi

Daily gratitudes:
The slimmest crescent of moon
The scent of gardenias
The cheese girl at Whole Foods
My cow robe
Aspen eyes
Thunder Cat

 

Or at least one of the views from Marina Cay. Every view is fabulous there, but I always love hanging out on my little porch.  Guess I’m feeling a touch homesick for the islands.

Marina Cay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “You block your dream when you allow your fear to grow bigger than your faith.”  —  Mary Manin Morrissey

Daily gratitudes:
Housecleaning, even though it hurts sometimes
Bacon
Kisses
Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
People walking their horses on a dirt road

Two blooms in tandem, showing their age, but still lovely.

Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the Day: “Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”  —  William Wordsworth

Daily gratitudes:
The three fawns, still spotted, cavorting in a field on the edge of Boulder
El Corazon
Making a decision about our Labor Day getaway
My bed
Being twinsies in attire with strangers

 

This storm passed over Jost van Dyke, sharing its brief blustery winds with those of us on Tortola.

Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”  —  GK Chesterton

Daily gratitudes:
The little old man on the street rocking out along with Kelsea and me to the music from the truck radio downtown last weekend
Not setting the house on fire when I cooked pork chops
How the curtains move in the breeze from the storm that never came
The curiously strange dogs at the small farm down the road
Paint horses
Getting to see MKL today

The grass surrounding this bench at the Heritage Inn was as soft as any I’ve ever tiptoed through. And the view from the bench isn’t bad either.

Heritage Inn, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day:  “Amidst the worldly comings and goings, observe how endings become beginnings.” – Tao Te Ching

Daily gratitudes:
Pam
The Cornell U. Red Tail Hawk’s Nest Cam
Red-wing blackbirds
The foot oil lamp
My glow from being in love

 

The colors of the Caribbean peek out from every nook and cranny on Tortola.

Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “The people who want to be in your life will always find a way. They will make every effort without excuses or lies or broken promises.”  —  Lessons Learned In Life

Daily gratitudes:
The purple on Rockies Opening Day
Seagulls in the Rocky Mountains
The old man who walks his pug on 16th Street every afternoon
Getting a seat on the bus home tonight
That Kelsea is spending the night with me
Aspen eyes

 

Photo title: Not On The Menu

Trellis Bay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

Quote of the day: “The past is unchangeable, but the future is unwritten.”  —  Jenna Petersen

Daily gratitudes:
Company
Productive work-at-home days
Tonight’s casserole
Braiding my daughter’s hair
Hot air balloons in the cool mornings

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