Dear Sunday Letter friends,
Oh my gosh, so much has happened since my last Sunday Letter. Since I can only write in snatches of stolen time, I’ll jump right to it.
I’m dreaming of another snowfall this winter. After that, I will be watching for my tulips to pop up from the soil.
I recently spent six days at the Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow in Eureka Springs, and I am thrilled with the progress I’ve made this year on my manuscript. I started this novel when COVID hit the country, hoping a writing project would keep me occupied and give me something to show for such a crazy time. Last week while at the colony, I ALMOST finished my rough draft.
I’m so, so close.
Even though I still have LOTS of work to do on the story, having a completed first draft feels like a huge milestone. Future drafts will never exist without a first. And a final book will certainly never happen without cranking out the first draft. So yay.
I’ve heard lots of people say they’ve barely been able to read a book this year, much less concentrate on anything creative. For me, this new project has provided an escape.
More on this later. Much later, probably…
You’ve probably heard our puppy news. Since Gracie scampered into our lives last Saturday afternoon, I’ve barely written a word! Yes, we named her after my protagonist in The Accidental Salvation of Gracie Lee, and so far she is living up to her spitfire character’s name.
I forgot how busy puppies are, and how one tiny bundle of energy can completely uproot a peaceful routine. I didn’t realize how peaceful my routine was…
She’s also part snapping turtle...
Chew toys occupy her for a split second. Shoestrings and sock feet and bare fingers taste much better.
These tiny puppy days never last very long, and being unable to write for long stretches of time is temporary. The entertainment value and happiness a new family member provides is priceless. Who needs all ten fingers anyway? Ha.
Even though we provided plenty of warning, it has taken Annabelle a few days to embrace such a whirlwind of change, especially when that whirlwind came in a furry package that could possibly be vermin.
Annabelle has always been a cautious girl, suspicious of anything new in the house. Once, when she realized our piano was actually capable of making sounds, she began taking the loooooong way around it for a solid week, avoiding the massive thing at all costs.
For Gracie, it was love at first sight the instant she saw Annabelle. One week later, Annabelle is coming around to the idea that Gracie is now part of our pack. Sometimes, she accidentally has fun with her.
Annabelle has not only gained a little playmate/sister, but she now has a permanent little black shadow chasing her.
We aren’t exactly skipping Christmas, but if we aren’t careful, the entire season could easily pass us by.
Things that haven’t happened since my last Sunday Letter—we haven’t put up a Christmas tree, nor have we strung twinkle lights along our porch railing. These things aren’t going to happen for us this year. And I’m okay with it.
I have two nativity scenes on display, and our red berry wreaths are hanging in the dining room windows. Our collection of bottle brush and tinsel trees add ample sparkle.
Frosty waits beside the front door to greet, well, no one, other than a few masked-up neighbors who come to meet Gracie, and our mailman who brings much appreciated Christmas cards. Much like Thanksgiving, our Christmas group will be small this year.
Minimal gifts and minimal decorations. Even so, we are filled with good cheer.
This year more than any other, I am reminded of the words of the lovable ole Grinch—
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before.
What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store.
What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!
Upcycle Christmas Cards
Speaking of Christmas cards, don’t forget to save yours and upcycle them for next year’s gift tags!
Click HERE for how-to.
Things Momma Says:
I have been having one of these in my coffee every morning, and my days have been going better.
Sunday Letter readers,
Thank you for adding joy to my life this year by being a Grace Grits and Gardening follower, for commenting on blog and Facebook posts, and by sharing those you especially enjoy. This has been a rough year in many ways, but there is still so so so much good to celebrate.
To those who have lost friends and loved ones in 2020, my very deepest sympathies.
Be kind, spread peace, and have yourself a merry little Christmas!
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.