Yesterday passed by without much fanfare about Groundhog Day. People in Minnesota already know they are going to get more snow and winter weather whether Punxsutawney Phil, the celebrated groundhog, sees his shadow or not. Watched part of the Super Bowl last night and after seeing the lopsided score and the awful half time show, I found other things to do.
Lately I have had women over for teas and conversation using my paternal grandmother’s tea set. (see photo above) These are probably post WWII plates and saucers that were hand painted by Japanese ladies after Japan lost the war. Others have shown off their plates that read on the bottom “Occupied Japan.” With all the social media and how involved we all get with Twitter and Facebook, it is refreshing to just sit around and have scones and tea.
So far with my three parties, I have had 16 or 17 women over in the last several weeks. I hope to have others to our old farmhouse in March when the weather is not so unpredictable. I had to cancel my first party because of a blizzard. The other parties meant that our yard had to be snow blown out by a fancy tractor. Thanks to our wonderful neighbors who live a mile away. It has gotten to the point where even if we don’t call them and it is 20 degrees below zero, they still show up ready to clean out our yard. Yes, we have had blizzards a-plenty and we just finished January. We know, as Minnesotans, that there are potentially three more months of blizzard weather that could hamper our plans. So we have become flexible and we are NOT breakable. Not as breakable as fragile tea cups and saucers.
I am glad to say that my second book is in the hopper. It was a tough semester with teaching two classes, being Program Director of our Carnegie and putting photos and text together for the book on my hometown. I look forward to how the proofs will look once May rolls around. The launch date is set for early June for our All-Schools Reunion end of June.
Not much other news to announce. I am watching the events very closely in Ukraine because I lived there for six years and have many friends and former students still there. Some have gone to Maidan (Square in Ukrainian) plaza on Kretschatik, hopefully none have been in the middle of violence or some of the earlier altercations. I pray that is all resolved soon but there are too many bigger issues that have been under the surface for a long time. I think the same could be said about Kazakhstan. Many things have been swept under the rug and soon there could be a dramatic change in the landscape especially in Astana.
What we can do is sit back and enjoy life and LOVE our families. At the same time we can pray for those who are missing loved ones or are struggling to survive in countries where their government does not serve the people. Our own democracy is fragile and hanging in the balance.