Snows flying and Im happily content to be tucked in my house snowed in. Its like Im in a cubby. Its like Im back in the womb. Its like being the thing inside the thing. Its safe. Its soft. Its sound proof. A cocoon. Turn up the heat, or keep it low and gather blankets to bundle. Put another log on the fire. Do all those things and feel the walls close in and smell the smells of the fire, of the blankets, of the hot air from the register, of the steel heat from the electric wall units. Comfort and necessity both smell good. Its warm. How can others live in places that dont have winter snowstorms? Dont they like being cuddled? I have to have it. Having to have it should be a large part of why we live here, otherwise why are we living here? Snow swirls. Look straight up and spy zillions of snowflakes zigzagging their way to the ground. Snow swirls, then like chips in Plinko they land were they want. I see flakes cut through chimney smoke, picking up a small bit of soot, and I wonder if those snowflakes cough, or melt, or land colored a tad gray. You tell me snow isnt heaven sent? Looking out into my driveway I see shimmering flakes fall, I hear Christmas music, I see snow laid perfectly upon my mountain now two-feet deep. Snow is heaven sent. Its otherworldly. Its a phenomenon. Its odd. Its too beautiful. Its not aligned with most other things that occur in life. Its consistently greater. A full-stroke snow storm, a fully blown fire, are opposite ends of nature, but theyre both sure relaxing to behold. Both are simple and dangerous and lucky for me today, both are on full display. Watching either or, or both, is memorizing, or not. Is it possible to be memorized into a meditative state? I think so, because sitting here in my UVM sweats Im mesmerizingly meditative. Ha, see, you dont come up with a freaked out line like that from watching football, it comes from watching snow, fire, or both just take my word. My meditation is about gratefulness. Im enormously grateful for this Beethovens birthday (December 16th) snowstorm. Every year this is what we all wish for Christmas isnt it, in Vermont especially? Remember please the greeny, mushy Christmases past weve had recently, and think how not so surprised wed have been this year had we had yet another greeny mushy Christmas. If Mr. Gore is only half correct, these snowy Christmas weeks may someday be the exception. So yes, Im cussid elated about this Decembers snow and its glorious abundance. Im grateful I can crinkle wrapping paper with my hands because I dont have arthritis. Im grateful Ive never had teeth problems. If you havent had teeth problems please join me in being grateful. Do you realize how many dang things can go wrong with your teeth? Im grateful I can juggle. Im grateful youre still reading this, and very grateful (hopeful?) the publishers will give me another shot next week. Im grateful for little babies, and peanut M&Ms, and blah, blah, blah. You had enough of my grateful nesses? Mid-life is good for allowing us to realize we actually die. Mid-life also helps us finally realize that this isnt a test run, and that just because we exist doesnt mean were entitled to anything, like Christmases, and snow (especially snow). It hit me two weeks ago that though not probable, its very possible this could be my last Yule festival. I really thought about it really. I just dont mean I thought it and when I did I filed the thought under, yeah Right, I mean I actually thought about it, and when I did, I became very grateful for the 46 Christmas seasons Ive lived, and turned my energies to making sure I show gratitude for the gift of living another. How can I show my gratitude for Christmas you wonder? Well I thought Id put an extreme amount of thought and energy into elevation. Im going to try and elevate my inner spiritual life and also my physical life. Im going to try and elevate those around me. Im going to try and lift them up. I want us all to elevate each other in a gazillion ways, not pound each other down in so many ways. How will I go about it? Well Im going to start by trying, as often as I can, to elevate each corner of my mouth. If I can do that, Ill be smiling. Im grateful for Christmas and snow, and Im grateful that you and I are well enough to enjoy this years Christmas snow. I dont take it for granted that Christmas 2008 will find my company. Yes, thats a ridiculously spirit dampening statement, but it bares thought as far as Im concerned.