Just like that, another year begins. Tomorrow, my kids will both go back to school, and the holiday will officially be over. We welcomed the new year in frigid cold temperatures. Emily's birthday is on New Year's Eve, so it's a double celebration. She invited a friend and we all went out to dinner. We had planned to go to the fireworks display downtown, but opted for something earlier in the evening. Dan and I took the girls to the holiday lights exhibit at the Denver Zoo. It's so beautifully done and there were plenty of hot chocolate booths set up along the way to help us stay warm. The pathways are trimmed in lights with lighted monkeys and zebras and giraffes and all kinds of animals along the way. Thankfully, there were a couple of indoor exhibits open so that we could go in and let our toes defrost. I found myself sipping hot chocolate while staring into the eye of an elephant, grateful for the warmth.
Our indoor Christmas decorations are all put away, for the most part. I did leave some white lights up on the mantel and my little angel tree is still up, too. January and February are so dreary, I think it warms the place up a bit. I may add some hearts to the angel tree for Valentine's Day.
With my new calendar handy, I'm eager to begin the new year. I'm a list-maker and New Year's is the ultimate time for list making. I write down every resolution I can think of, then pare them down to just a few. Or more. Some of my items become lists themselves, such as my book list. Here's a sampling, in no particular order:
Helen of Troy by Margaret George
The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig
The second Fr. Tim book by Jan Karon
The Girls from Ames by Jeffrey Zaslow
Laura Bush memoirs
Decision Points by George W. Bush
Re-read Jane Eyre
The Art of Mindful Living by Thich Nhat Hanh
Another goal for this year is to take part in the 52 Letters, 52 Weeks Project. There was a time when letter writing was such a habit that I would eagerly look forward to the mail arriving each day. It's one of my favorite parts of Christmas, getting real mail in the mailbox! So, I'm going to join the group over at Katy's blog, and put some fun back in the mail! (BTW, if you'd like something besides bills in your mailbox, send me your snail mail address in an email:)
Other than melting snow and muddy gardens, there's not much else to report from Over the Backyard Fence. Happy New Year to all!