To Hug A Doug And Other Things

I was out on the land this afternoon, decompressing, wading through the spring creeks, shuffling through the snows, relaxing in the aspen groves, sidling up side hills, snaggling my wool tights on sagebrush, hugging on my very favorite Douglas fir tree.  It was just what I needed.  When I rolled back down the mountain into town, I felt restored, less tired, re-young.  Are you ready for Christmas now?  I’m never ready for Christmas.  Perhaps this is one of the secret themes of Christmas — unreadiness.  Unreadiness but willingness.  Unreadiness and willingness and perhaps miracles too — if you still believe in miracles and the impossible, that is.  I’m like a child that way.  I always believe in the impossible.  Miracles, too.  Sometimes everything comes true.

I bet you are huddled up under a quilt on your couch in the living room, sniffing the swirling scent of your Christmas tree (douglas fir?  balsam fir?  pine?), sipping egg nog or an herbal tea or a fine glass of merlot, knitting, thinking about the winding down of another year of life, thinking about the crazy things going on in our world, thinking about the beautiful things going on in our world, thinking about the steady battle between darkness and light that takes place constantly around us on so many different levels.  Thinking about grace, mercy, love, hope and joy!  Wondering if you’re going to have to shovel the sidewalk in the morning.  Wondering if your flight is going to be canceled.  Wondering if you’re going to have to spend the night in a cheap hotel in Reno, Nevada (…oops…that’s what I’m wondering…darn that Donner Pass over the Sierra Nevada…).  Daydreaming about what is to come, what has now passed, where you are headed, where you are coming from.  Maybe you’re reading a beautiful book.  Maybe you’re rubbing the belly of a cat.  What a beautiful night it is, right?  These Christmas nights.  They’re all a twinkle.  I think I have a tiny, tapered candle lit in my very soul…


  1. This was such a beautiful and breathtaking read. Soothing and mesmerizing as well. I hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas and joyous New Year!

  2. Simone Turner says:

    What a beautiful light you are Lady Plume…Thank you for these beautiful words.
    So needing these words right now, to listen to, read, take in….and ponder. Merry, merry Christmas to you and yours. Much love and light to you, be safe over Donner, snowing at this very moment here in Spring Creek! Can’t wait to wake up tomorrow morning and go frolic!!! XoX Simone.

  3. Continue to burn bright, friend.
    Tonight there was time for snowshoeing in the luminous dark, reading and hot cocoa sipping beneath a huge afghan with a massive orange cat warming my legs.
    Safe travels to you, and wishes for a wonderful holiday.

  4. I think I might be in love with your scarf. That is such a delicious color of purple…makes me think of berry syrup!

  5. What perfect words – yes, yes and yes. Thank you for writing what I can’t seem to. Safe travels + happy holidays.

  6. Lynsey Brooks says:

    Lady you are so right, I’m thinking all those things, and I think you are spot on with Unreadiness and willingness it’s the perfect way to describe my current state of being 🙂

  7. exactly

  8. Reading this fills my lungs with crisp clean air and my eyes with colour and light!
    Merry Christmas!

  9. Merry Christmas, Jillian! I think that picture of you with your purple yumminess and braid is one of the prettiest I’ve seen!
    These nights, I’m making beeswax candles for gifts, and finishing up sewing on my handspun yarn onto my daughter’s Christmas surprise – a handmade doll (alas, not made by me. But at least I can claim the hair and sweater! 🙂 Then, finishing up sewing wee teddies for my two children’s stockings…and wrapping…and cooking and cleaning… I will relax Christmas night! 🙂
    I wish you and yours all the very best!
    xx E

  10. as we head out over that pass & down into the mojave desert ourselves, i wish you & rw the very best of an unready & miraculously willing christmas deary. you look positively dreamy in that photo.


  11. Madame Noisy PLume, I wish you a Joyeux Noël!

  12. Merry Christmas to you, Gillian and a Happy New Year! 🙂
    Reading you I remembered the magic of Christmas time!

  13. (happy sigh) ~ you always know how to put the heart into words so beautifully. That ‘little light of yours’ shines wonderfully bright into all our sparkling nights here. Your pictures are saturated eye candy too… gorgeous!
    A warm and blessed Christmas to you sweet Plume!!
    needle and nest

  14. Love you Mrs. Plume! Have a safe trip over that treacherous Donner Pass, I know Mr. Plume is an excellent trailblazer. Merry, merry Christmas and a jolly New Year!

  15. i love all your rich colours – i think you’re inspiring the already pretty colourful me to be even more colourful lately. i am definitely feeling unready for Christmas – an event that comes even sooner when you celebrate on Christmas eve. but we’ll all make it through, we always do. wishing you a holiday full of sparkle and glow.

  16. Such captivating pictures of the land you are reveling in. Merry Christmas to you!!xo

  17. mashed potatoes says:

    Thank you for this! It’s VERY beautiful and comforting. Woke up too early from prechristmaseve excitement. Filled my belly with hot toast and nut butter. Landed here before catching Some extra zzzzzz’s for tonights feasting and fun.
    Merry Christmas Jillian!!! It’s been amazing to read about your special corner of the world all year long. Enjoy your Christmas celebrations with family! xo

  18. Since I’m not able to hug you today, I shall run outside, right now, find my own Doug and hug it ever so tightly. Whispering into its bark, up through the bare branches and out west across our mountains, a Christmas wish for you. Dancing sugar plums, miracles galore and most of all, a heartfelt thank you. This post is a gift. xo

  19. You don’t know me from Adam, but I read your every post with anticipation and love. You paint a picture in my minds eye that is so emotionally moving, imaginative and beautiful. Thank you! Happy New year

  20. such beauty – words and photos. wishing you a splendid new year!

  21. i wish for some douglas fir sap for anointing my soul.
    there’s nothing like fir resin, so sticky and sweetly perfumed.

    love your outfit. i wanted to wear a skirt while snowshoe’ing this past weekend but our hill has more snow than does your mountain. maybe i need some gaiters for my sorels….


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