Every year I swear I’m going to celebrate Old Christmas, or Epiphany, and gin up some joy before the grim reality of January presses me to the floor and holds me there. I always lose. But maybe not this year.
This morning while I waited for the sun, or at least less darkness, I thought I was going to lose again– extreme cold is coming tonight, and I was worried about everything. Animals, people who don’t have jobs, heating costs, getting everything done on time (my go-to worry). I set my mood on grateful-but-grim, and went through my morning routine determined to make some progress on my list, in priority order. Sunrise observance, lighting candles for prayers, reading inspirational text, done.
Next, chickens. They were squawking to get out of the coop, even in the rain. OK, girls. Let me put on boots, coat, hat, etc. Sigh. I’m a sissy farmer sometimes. I mean, it’s 50 darned degrees.
Wait, was that an egg cackle? Naw. Again? The egg cackle doesn’t sound like anything else. It’s that bawk-bawk-be-KAAAACK! And this one was loud and in my face.
I got their clean water (note to self: dump the water fountain tonight or it will be frozen solid tomorrow– a royal pain), cabbage and scratch treat. The girls asked me a lot of pointed questions and gave me looks implying double servings were in order. Finally I wandered over to the egg box and looked in the section where they have always laid. Nothing.
Just to satisfy myself I looked all the way down the row of four nest boxes. So help me Hannah!
In the last box, where they have NEVER laid, were EIGHT eggs! That means they’ve been laying certainly since New Year’s Day , and I didn’t see it because I wasn’t looking. The picture above is the eight 2014 eggs, the heaviest weighing 72 grams, the lightest 63. Contrast with the tiny eggs (bantam?) I got from my co-op last week, the smallest of which was 31 grams.
That was gift set #1 of Epiphany, from my perennial optimists Bennett and Agnes Scott. I love you girls.
Gifts #2 and #3 were in my Facebook feed and the N&O today– a digital stocking if you will. #2, Tim and Meg Toben’s Honeysuckle Tea House project has been entirely community funded as of last night, http://bit.ly/1aAY0Ba. This project is a true comeback-give back story.
#3 grumpy Craig Lindsey got waaaay more than he asked for to make his rent after being laid off and face-planting in the writer’s economy (note: it’s tough) http://bit.ly/1aAYbwm. People gave him THOUSANDS of dollars, and he only needed $900 right now.
So we won, folks. Epiphany is here. The Three Kings of kindness, perseverance and optimism have visited, and left offerings. People are a whole lot more generous and kind than I knew. A lot of people apparently believe in doing something positive, even if it’s small.
I’m putting on some more music!