Here we are, with only five days remaining in 2020. It has become popular to refer to 2020 as the year everyone is willing to forget without a backward look. Adios. Sayonara. Au Revoir. In my case, I prefer to cherish the good memories, AND look forward to a return to all that has been missing from our lives. And what better way to re-visit the happy times of 2020 than to scroll through my blog posts?
In honor of the twelve days of Christmas, I have chosen the dozen posts that stood out for me. (By the way, I am not referring to the song, The Twelve Days of Christmas, but rather the period in Christian theology that marks the span between the birth of Christ and the coming of the Magi.) I have not attempted to rank them from 1 to 12, but to simply list them in order of appearance. It's the holidays, and I don't want to make this post any more work than necessary!
Don't Go with the Glaciers - January 19, 2020
This post struck me for its wise words (written to myself!), and this was BEFORE the pandemic struck the US with full force, and BEFORE the election took over our lives. I wrote about altering reality by taking action. Ensuring that I have the facts rather than making assumptions. Ensuring that my picture of reality is balanced. Continuing to hope. Note to self - this might be worth reading once a month!
Thank you for being my friend - January 29, 2020
This post was a tribute to my blogging friends as I approached my third year in the blogosphere. It also featured this photograph, which Spousal Unit selected as the background for our 2020 Christmas card. I gave him forty to choose from!!!
You "Otter" See This! - March 1, 2020No explanation required, right? It was the photogenic otter down by the lake!
Let's Go to the Beach - April 5, 2020
I think I picked this primarily for its pretty pictures. Who can resist hibiscus and sunsets? But it also plucked at the heart strings - don't we all long to return to a world that allows us to jet off to distant countries with nothing more to concern us than making sure we pack a swimsuit and some flip-flops?
Three Years in Montana - May 10, 2020
Being here for three years is reason enough to include this one! In addition, it contains a fabulous pictorial summary of those 36 months. It reminded me of flipping through a stack of National Geographics - one grandiose mountain vista after another! Down-selecting to one shot to include here was incredibly difficult!
Emerging (Part 2) - June 7, 2020
I am a sucker for wildlife, and this post includes beaver and my buddy, the badger. Plus, Montana was in full spring fling; looking at these photos of flowers and birds now, it is almost hard to imagine that our world was a rainbow rather than the monochromatic palette we have now!
Icing on the Cake - June 28, 2020
This post documents time that I spent with my kids during a trip to Ohio, after the travel restrictions had been lifted. While we Skype with our children every week whether we are in lockdown or not, I think we would all agree that there is no substitute for seeing family in person. The visit took on an importance and almost an urgency that would have been missing without the pandemic. It was a wonderful visit in so many ways.
July 19, 2020
This camping trip catapulted Granite Lake into the top 5 of hikes completed in the last 3 years (and there have been 56 unrepeated hikes in that time - on other words, it has stiff competition). Of course it deserves to be in the top 12 posts!
Hazy Lazy Days - August 26, 2020
We welcomed #1 Son home with this post. If that wasn't enough, this is another entry that I chose simply because I liked the photos, and since it linked up with my favorite linky parties. In hindsight, it was also less than one month before Maggie died. In this post, she is melting into a sun puddle, one of her favorite places in the house.
Family Fun - August 30, 2020
This post is about primo family time during a visit from #1 Daughter and The Boyfriend. With #1 Son already in residence, it made the week even more exceptional. (and the huckleberry pie with ice cream didn't hurt, either!)
The Maggie Tribute - September 27, 2020
I still "see" her in the house. Out of the corner of my eye, I could swear I see her perched on the arm of the couch, or curled up on the heating vent. Occasionally, I imagine that I hear her claws click-clack-clicking on the wood floor. And then reality comes crashing back and my heart is broken all over again. She was a huge part of our lives and this tribute had to be in the top 12.
My Escape - October 4, 2020
This is number 12, and ironically, I think it is my overall favorite. I like the writing style - quite often, my posts take on a travelogue, "just the facts, ma'am" style, whereas this post is more contemplative. Coincidentally, the book I was reading, "Ring of Bright Water", perfectly suited the post. The photos are colorful as we entered the fall season. But perhaps most of all, I imagine this post captured the sentiment that many of us experienced at that moment in history.
"... it is the best and the worst that one remembers, seldom the mediocrities that lie between and demand no attention." Ring of Bright Water
I took a few minutes to breathe deeply, attempting to imprint upon my memory the yellow of aspen torches reflected in the water. How I wanted to freeze this moment, to preserve the profound sense of contentment and ease that permeated my being. Perhaps the best I can hope for is to remember my escape, and to call forth its restorative powers when I need them next. I choose to be grateful for the hours of solitude that I had, rather than resentful of leaving them behind.
From 10/4/2020 post