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COUNTRY RAMBLIN’S by Tamara Hillman
January 2007


Well, here it is—the New Year! Christmas with all its hustle and bustle is over, and hopefully, decorations are now being packed away until next year.
If you live in snow-country, it’s time to nestle deep into that afghan or granny- quilt, and stay warm and cozy by the fire till this cold spell passes. So, let it snow, and notice how cleansing-white it makes everything look as those soft flakes drift down outside your window, piling up like creamy marshmallows o’re the land. Bring out those hobbies you never find time for, or work a picture puzzle with your kids or grandkids. That’s what I do. I knit and crochet, love to do puzzles, (crossword or picture,) and of course, stay very busy with reading and writing. I collect antique inkwells, and shining them up about now is an annual chore. I have over two hundred so it takes a few hours to finish the task.
I also find it fun to bundle up and take a winter walk. It helps to clear one’s mind and thoughts without continual interruptions. Everything is still, and the air feels so crisp as I tread along our snowy lane. All sound is muffled under white padding that covers rocks and twigs that might otherwise snap and crack underfoot. Car tires crunch in the snow instead of whine or squeal on the pavement. Sometimes my hubby goes with, and we recall many fun times we spent on snowy winter days in our youth. It can be very romantic to walk hand in hand, (glove in glove). One thing great about being past fifty, (quite a ways past in my case), you have those wonderful memories to take with you into old age. It gives a great deal of ‘food for fodder’ as they used to say way back when.
Of course, this is the time to make all the resolutions we seldom keep in the New Year. Mine is always to take off several pounds and keep them off, but like old friends, they hug me close. Even if I do send them away for a while, they soon return and beckon me to have another piece of pie or any other favored treats just so they can remain. Yes, as you can plainly see, we are very devoted now—those fat cells and me.
Another thing I must keep in mind is to try to be a better person, and to love my fellow man, (even if we disagree politically.) No joke. I have many friends who have this flaw but I’m learning to accept their disability, and trying to be open minded and loving with them until they recover! Tee-hee! I like them as people but never can figure out why common sense was withheld when the Lord passed out all those brains they claim to have. Guess that’s why the old adage says, “Never discuss Religion or Politics,” (with anyone who might not agree with you, that is.) Ok, I’m now stepping down from my soapbox.
Speaking of boxes—I’m packing several of the cardboard type this month, and deciding what to sell of our furnishings since we are soon leaving the GREAT NORTH-WET on a permanent basis. Our home in Arizona is a ranch style house, (1,600 sg. feet) whereas, the one we are selling here is a tri-level monster. This paring down has been a challenge but only in deciding what will fit, and what won’t in a smaller, (much easier to keep) house. Some things you just have to sacrifice to the yard sale, or give to the kids. I’m anxious to finish remodeling the new house however, and move my salvaged things in. Hopefully, this is our last move before the marble orchard,
(get it?)

Enough of my ramblin’s—here are a couple of poems:
Since I mentioned my struggle with weight in years of late,
I’ll send along one that relates to that very problem, and also one about snowy winter months such as January,
when life slows to a crawl, and staying warm is a priority…


Each time I pull on blue Jeans,
it ain’t an easy task,
I get to thinkin’ ‘bout those times 
my size, nobody asked

Just like the words in Twitty’s song,
‘bout those ‘Tight Fittin’ Jeans,’
I use to turn an’ eye or two
by just such girly means
fat ladyBut age has not been kind to me,
it’s played a dirty trick,
in places where I was quite thin,
I now am very thick

I tried those diets on TV,
an’ joined Fat-Lady’s Club,
lost thirty pounds a time or two,
but got hungry for more grub
Reckon I’m lethargic now,fourteen
don’t get much exercise,
but buyin’ fourteen chubbies
should open up my eyes
‘Cause even then it ain’t no joke
to squeeze into those pants,
I’m now built just like mama,
an’ three or four large aunts
It just ain’t fair to gain this weight
when past a certain age,
my metabolism’s fallin’ short—
it puts me in a rage
I guess my eatin’ habits
have got to really change,
fried chickenfried chicken is my favorite food,
an’ I don’t find that strange
But maybe all those vittles
piled high upon my plate,
with gravy poured on biscuits,
ain’t what I shoulda ate
An’ maybe second helpin’s,
especially with desserts,
will never spell success for me
in wearin’ smaller skirts
I’ve listened to Dame Oprah,
an’ even Dr. Phil,
they promise I can lose the weight,
it’s just a case of will
They make me feel inspired,
almost a day or two,
then,  I hop upon the scale
an’ start to feelin’ blue
I’ve fought a real hard battle,
danced with Simmons till I sweat,
sore back an’ charlie-horses,
the reward I always get
So, it’s back to fourteen chubbies,
this is my last resolve,
I’ve faced the fact―I’ll not be thin,
an’ now the problem’s solved…


Full moon rises
with luminous essence
falling on fresh white snow—
reflecting myriads of twinkling lights.

Torch-flame radiance
blankets meadow and field,
exuding the shadowy luster
of an imposter twilight.

Refracting moonbeams
encompass deep forests’
dancing like flickering neons
through evergreens.

Moonlight emulates day
in the midnight hour. . . 

Night owls hoot in lofty tones,
Ermine play on slippery slopes,
Lynx and cougar prowl—
postponing slumber.

Translucent colors
diffuse the dawn
shimmering on new snow
with great sparkles in morning light.



A poem can be fun, “Therapy on Paper,” or a beautiful memory of a snowy night.

Granny Tam



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