The seasons are changing, and not just in the usual sense.
Minnesota winters have been so reliable for producing a "white Christmas" with snow on the ground like a true winter wonderland. Not this year. I came to Minnesota in 1998. During my years here, I remember one December or two that was so dry that I wondered if there would be snow for the holidays. This year, though, is a first. It's above freezing. All that snow that we got 2 months ago? Gone. I have never seen this effect until now.
Global warming will bring big changes to Minnesota. They've already had to change the dates of the local ice festivals, or cancel festivals altogether. With "warm" weather like this, however, ice festivals may become stories told by old people to young disbelievers who never knew a climate cool enough for buildings made of ice.
It just doesn't feel much like Christmas this year.
At work, several of us donated food and time to cook and serve dinner at a Ronald McDonald house
in the local Children's Hospital. We heard that our food was good. People from other floors were coming down to eat after they heard that the meal that night was nice. That group event was the closest sense of holiday that I've experienced this year, even though I'm not really comfortable doing kitchen stuff with strangers. It took a long time for me to get comfortable enough cooking meals just for myself in a typical household environment.
The solstice came and went. I noticed its passing and am looking forward to more daylight hours. Christmas Eve tonight, though, doesn't feel like much. Normally, I'd play a marathon of computer games, but I haven't been able to do much of that lately either. I'm converting my computer from Windows to Linux, and I still don't have everything settled yet. Not that I've really celebrated Christmas as a holiday in a long time. I think the last winter that I ever did any of the usual stuff was probably the Christmas of 1996, the last time that I dated anyone.
Even Hope is low-key tonight. She can be excused, though, since I was told by my landlords that she had nibbled on some poinsettia earlier today (not normally accessible) while I was out at the movie theater. She may be feeling a bit nauseous. She didn't even bother getting annoyed by my Christmas Chewbacca.
The latest Hobbit movie didn't thrill me as much as usual today. This lack of enthusiasm may be a side effect of breaking my gluten-free diet during the last week. I've had pizza, burritos, Whopper candy, egg rolls, and lots of other yummy, yummy foods that I've missed in 2014. I just needed a holiday break, I guess.
I'm already paying for it with a significant resurgence of muscle twitches. I guess maybe the brain fog is worse too. Maybe that has something to do with my difficulty in making the switch to Linux in recent days too? Ah, well. It was worth it. I mentioned pepperoni pizza and Whoppers, right?
I suppose it's time to get back on the gluten-free bandwagon, though. It clearly helps. A lot.
Oh, and I'm going in for sinus surgery again during the 2nd week in January. It's the same sinus polyp problem that I had in 1998 during my first sinus surgery. My ex-boyfriend helped with recovery last time. This surgery should not be quite as invasive, and I'll be relying on landlords for transportation. I expect it to go well again.
I'm certain that 2014 was a much better year than 2013. Then again, though, that was a rather low bar to measure against. Even with T'Reese dying this summer
, 2014 was still a better year. I hope things finally turn around in the coming months. Maybe Hope and I will both perk up a bit. Better days for everyone!