Monday, January 4

Posted by Laurel Garver on Monday, January 04, 2010 19 comments
In the season of giving, I've been hoarding. Or shall I put a more positive spin on it and say I've been saving up for a bleak time, when everyone could use a spoonful of sugar?

My post-holiday slump doesn't typically hit till after Epiphany (Jan. 6). Everything (except maybe the stockings) stays up through the whole 12 days. When the magi hightail it back to Persia by another route, the baubles go back in boxes. We return to "ordinary time"--liturgically and practically--and the usual business of looking past the everyday grace and humdrum miracles right under our noses: Heartbeats. Air. Blood that clots. Cuisine. Music. Dog at my feet and cat in my lap. Stop signs. Peaceful queues at the train station. Stories leaking out of every corner of creation.

January lingers long and cold here in Pennsylvania. You could almost forget that every morning, we're getting just a little more daylight. Those tulip bulbs under the soil are brewing deep, sweet hues inside them. January has its own kind of ordinary magic for which I am thankful.

In that spirit, I'd like to share my thanks for the following bloggers who bring loveliness to my world. I pass on the "One Lovely Blog Award" so graciously bestowed by Carolina at Carol's Prints to these lovely blogs:

Elle at Elle Strauss - Author
Susan at A Walk in My Shoes
Michelle at beautiful chaos
Rhiannon at Rhiannon Hart
Karen at Novels During Naptime
Donna and the gang at First Novels Club
Girl with one eye at A Squirrel Amongst Lions

I also received the Blogging Writer award from the always-generous Shannon at Book Dreaming. This "rule free" award is mine to do with as I please. I'd like to pass it along to two bloggers who are deeply committed to their craft and without fail have wonderful tips:

Katie at Step 1: Write, Edit and Revise
Roni at Fiction Groupie

Thanks for sharing your expertise!
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  1. Thank you so much. I am honored. It is a bright spot in my otherwise freezing, cold January morning. Here's to spring!

  2. Congrats on both of your much-deserved awards, Laurel. You chose great people to share them with. :-)

  3. Congrats on receiving the awards and thanks for passing one on to me and for the nice words! :)

  4. Thanks for passing the award along! It brightened my day (as did your post).

    And I like your Epiphany put-away rule. This year, I instigated a "Three gifts was good enough for Jesus, so it's good enough for you" rule with the Pea for Christmas.

  5. Congrats and a huge thank you! It always means a lot getting awards from followers!

  6. PS - I don't know if you knew this, but the FNC is in the Philly area too! January does drag. I hate winter!

  7. Congrats on the awards, Laurel! Innit fun giving 'em away?

    Plus, there are some particularly lovely turns of phrase up there--the tulip bulb one is great!

  8. You have such a way with words, m'dear. You've managed to turn what is normally the bleakest month of the year into something beautiful and filled with promise. I don't think there is a more deserving writer out there than you for such awards.

    I look forward to checking out those blogs you mentioned that I have not yet visited.

  9. Susan: You're quite welcome. Glad it brought some cheer.

    Shannon: Your generosity inspires me. I'm trying my best to pay it forward, friend!

    Roni: wow, you are a wonderful follower. You found your present before I got alerts sent out! You're very welcome.

  10. Karen: Glad it cheered you. I'm still getting used to the epiphany rule, since I didn't grow up following the church calendar to the degree I do now. It is nice to delay the post-holiday slump, though.

    Katie: thank you for being the awesome tip-master you are!

    Donna & Frankie: Whenever I meet fellow Philadelphians online, I get the very undignified urge to yell "Yo!" and fist-bump them. My inner country girl cringes in horror. LOL.

  11. Simon: Thanks for helping me make so many wonderful online connections. I'm still waiting to get an award to pass on that you don't already have.

    Carolina: Thanks again for your generosity. Isn't finding new friends fun?

    I've been reading Wilder's _The Long Winter_ aloud to my daughter, which really puts our East coast winters into perspective. Suddenly it's much easier to find the good in January. We have food and heat! We're not stranded on the frozen tundra several days' ride from civilization!

  12. Congratulations on your award, and thanks so much for mine!

  13. Congratulations! It is always nice to be recognized, and to share. At least that's what my mother said.

  14. Awe shucks, glad you like my blog. I post a little somethin' somethin' tomorrow.

  15. Yikes. I imagine your winter lingers a long long time! Do you get used to that, or just deal with it?

  16. Michelle, Rhiannon and GWOE: You're most welcome. Thanks for being your awesome selves.

    JD: thanks for stopping by. My mother was of the mind that being recognized made one arrogant, so I'm still a bit squeamish about these blog prizes. Shouting out for others feels more comfortable.

    Scathing: it's warmer here in Philly than in parts of Florida today. Our winters are usually just very gray with an occasional 4" or 8" snow. Nothing to complain about compared to the Dakota plains, as Laura Ingalls Wilder writes about.

    BTW, did you ever get the interview questions I sent?