brightening the dark

My husband forgot to wake me this morning. He rises before I do, so he’s my alarm clock, knocking on the ceiling of the room under ours at my requested time. But last night I told him he didn’t need to wake me—I wasn’t planning to go running—and I was eager for a leisurely wake-up. But then, right before I fell asleep, I remembered that I had scheduled a writing morning for myself and had to get the kids over to Mom and Dad’s first thing. So I roused myself enough to tell my husband to wake me at seven. He mumbled a response, but I don’t think he really heard me. When I opened my eyes it was 7:23.

Even with only a half hour to get out the door, the morning felt relaxed. The rain thundering on the roof made everything darker and cozier than normal. I scurried from my room, dreading having to drag sleeping kids from their beds, only to discover my daughter reading in her bed by the light of her crazily-hung Christmas twinkly lights, and then, downstairs, my son reading by the light of the Christmas tree. I still had push them to get a move on, but at least they were awake.

Now it’s early afternoon and the sky is still heavy with rain clouds, the air filled with thick, soupy fog. The dirty breakfast and lunch dishes are piled at the sink (and soon I’ll exchange my computer for my earbuds and a podcast—or maybe Christmas music!and step into the kitchen to make an even bigger mess), but sweet-smelling candles are burning. Kitchen mess doesn’t feel so chaotic when there are lit candles to brighten the dark and soothe the nerves.

This same time, years previous: mini dramas, supper reading, the quotidian (12.16.13), fa-la-la-la-la, the quotidian (12.17.12), peppernuts, my baby, and cranberry white chocolate cookies.     


  • Anonymous

    My mom used candles at dinner because they didn't give enough light to show the stains on the old tablecloths. The side benefit was more peaceful dinners… kids mesmerized by the flame.

  • Mama Pea

    Errands on icy roads all morning and house cleaning all afternoon. Time to make dinner. Maybe your suggestion of candles will help me relax and not feel I have to rush through dinner prep, too. Thanks.

  • mommychef

    I am lighting candles now. Good idea! The weather here is the same and it was gingerbread men making today and soon time to make the supper mess and my nerves are all jangly…candles to the rescue!

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