There is no question the pandemic and COVID have changed all of our lives. So much of what we used to do, we can no longer do! So much of what we want we can’t have! Much of our normal day to day has been taken away from us, and in addition to making me sad, it makes me long for the good old days!
This is the first winter and holiday season we’ll spend in Canada for many years. Initially I was nervous about what that might end up like, with the cold weather and all. Its been a while since I hung around in -40 and I’m not sure I could manage. We had a chat in our house about how we were going to make it through and decided we needed to embrace it, suck it up, and just accept it for what it is. So far, it hasn’t been anywhere near -40 nor do I think it will be! The days have for the most part been pretty darn nice, warmer than expected and sunny!
Living on 160 acres of forest have its benefits if you’re isolating at home. We’ve done a number of projects to make our lock down manageable. This year we added a new building for a gym (story to come) so we could move our exercise equipment out of the garage and free up space for more building projects. We even made a rink just outside our garden space so we could add skating to our daily exercise routines. I was a little surprised how sentimental building that rink would be.
When I was a kid my dad would use the garage pad as a base so he could flood it and make us a rink!(We couldn’t afford the building until many years later). He hung lights from mom’s clothes line and we’d spend hours after school skating around on the frozen rink. As I stood with my garden hose in my gloved hand flooding my own rink, I spent many a moment reminiscing about those childhood memories.
When I was a kid, Dad would load my siblings and I into the car so we could drive to crown land outside our town to trudge through the deep snow and find the most perfect Christmas tree. At the time it seemed like such a chore, until we’d spot the perfect tree. Dad would grab his bow saw and cut down the spruce tree and together we’d drag it out of the forest. Tim and I did that this year! For the first time in more than 10 years, we found a little spruce tree, just the right height and perfectly formed. We dragged it home and for the first time in far too long, we decorated a tree in our home. (Check out the video below) I even pulled out my decades old Christmas candle collection and even wrapped our banister with garland. For a number of reasons, no longer relevant, we literally haven’t done this in our house in for ever!
This year because of COVID I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting on the things that matter most. I’ve had a lot of time to think about how it used to be and even though so much has changed for the better in our lives…so much of the past is comforting and incredibly special. This year I am reminded of how special so many of those moments were and it makes me a bit sad that I had forgotten so many of them…until now. They are not top of mind and its times like this that they pop back into our conscious and I am grateful for that! My niece told me the other day that Christmas and the holidays are for remembering the good times and making new memories. I had forgotten that…and in a really weird twist on the pandemic, its been amazing to learn this, again! Another life lesson 102 and all it took was a pandemic and isolation!