Another week has gone by and I find myself sitting at work, marking time. The year's projects have been completed or the budgets have been expended. My colleagues in Ireland have the day off (St. Stephen's Day) and a majority of my colleagues in the U.S. are off for the week. This leaves me one part apathetic, two parts relaxed and two parts contemplative. Boredom hasn't hit yet, as there are a large number of mundane things that need doing, all of them necessary, but none time critical. It's a nice place to be at the end of the year.
Those of you who know us know how busy 2007 has been. We filled it with almost every possible stressful event possible, with the exception of a wedding and a death (thank goodness). We moved internationally, had a child, sold a house and bought a house. And if you're reading this blog, you know that the House of 42 Doors is not a stress-free house.
I think that in the last 12 months, I've accomplished more than in any other year of my life. And it's made me realize that life is entirely too short. This epiphany is made all the more poignant by my upcoming birthday. I'm very soon reaching the second half of my life, if I live to the average age of an American male. I come from fairly long lived grandparents (one in his seventies, the other three in their nineties) so it is also possible that I'm nowhere near that 50% mark yet.
It's said that the more you know, the more you realize how little you know. It seems to be true with doing to. The more I do, the more I see that remains to be done. I don't know if I'll ever get to see the House of 42 Doors "done", but I do take comfort in seeing a little progress every day.
And of course, there are all the other projects and goals that remain outside of the House of 42 Doors. After reading some of the letters and blogs of our overseas friends, it made me "awaysick". I'd still love to live over seas again - someday - much, much further in the future. There is the all-grain, beer brewing contraption I want to build. And the mead that needs making. And the hops that need growing. And the gardening that needs doing. The Spanish or French I want to learn. The MBA and architecture degrees I want to learn. The marathon I want to run. The book I want to write. The tower I want to build. The blacksmithing I want to learn. And on and on. As I said, life is too short.
We had a great Christmas. It was just the four of us and we started a good number of Christmas traditions in our family this year. we are fortunate enough to have a real chimney in our house, so Santa could make his entrance and exit in the traditional manner. In addition to the cookies and chocolate milk for Santa, we left out some whiskey. We asked our oldest (now three) if Santa preferred Irish or Scotch whiskey and the very emphatic response was Scotch whiskey. He must have liked it. It was gone in the morning (along with all the chocolate milk and most of the cookies).
Santa left a sled for the girls. We took both of them out and pulled them around the yard until I got entirely too tired (I think I see an exercise resolution for the New Year coming). The youngest, who is eight months, wasn't too excited with all the pulling and running though. She fell asleep on the sled while Pumpkin pulled her. We transferred her inside and Pumpkin and I stayed outside to play in the snow. We hid in the snow caves (underneath the yews in the front of the house), threw snowballs at each other and dug for buried treasure. When I asked her what kind of treasure, she replied "yong, yost" (her l's are still coming along).
The day was capped off by a fabulous supper cooked by Ms. Huis and a movie after the girls were in bed. Here's hoping that next Christmas is just as enjoyable. Hope yours was too.