Friday, February 05, 2010

Friday Five: Staving off the Gloom

Revgal Sally from the UK writes this week's Friday Five:

Candlemass is past, and Christmas is well and truly over, here in the UK February looks set to be its usual grey and cold self. Signs of spring are yet to emerge; if like me you long for them perhaps you need ways to get through these long dark days. So lets share a few tips for a cold and rainy/ snowy day....

1. Exercise: what do you do if you can't face getting out into the cold and damp?
We have started taking Tai Chi classes (which are indoors thankyouverymuch) and most of the beginning exercises I can do at home. Tai Chi is actually helping my knees and my back be more flexible and I can see some strengthening of the large muscles which help my joints.

2. Food: time to comfort eat, or time to prepare your body for the coming spring/summer?
I make a lot of soups and stews: beef stew, corn chowder, chicken chili verde, chili con carne. With a side of homemade bread or cornbread, it's a warming meal.

3. Brainpower: do you like me need to stave off depression, if so how do you do it?
I pick a craft or hobby and do it. This winter I'm making a prayer shawl, my first ever big crocheting project. It will go to a Kairos Outside prison ministry group. I also cut and "force" forsythia so that I have something blooming from my yard long before spring is here. I just went and cut some as the "epic" snowstorm is starting... (pictured to the right.)

4. How about a story that lifts your spirits, is there a book or film that you return to to stave off the gloom?
I'm in a Jane Austen book club this year and that has been a fun way to keep my heart light. Generally, I try to find a good series and dive into it when the days are short and cold. Reedy Girl was just introduced to the James Herriott serries (All Creatures Great and Small) though we had read bits and pieces of them to her for years. One year I read all of the Mitford books, another year I re-read all of the David and Leigh Eddings' series.

5. Looking forward: do you have a favorite spring flower/ is there something that says spring is here more than anything else?
The snowdrops are the first trumpet, then forsythia. Those two give me a little courage to get through February which my mom says is "the longest month of the year." Here's a shot of some snowdrops bravely standing up to the weather today!

Bonus: post a poem/ piece of music that points to the coming spring......

One of my favorite's is Aaron Copland's "Appalachian Spring" because it weaves in the folk tune "Simple Gifts." I looked briefly for a good video but didn't like the ones I found (they had a fabulous clam by the 1st horn which was lamentable!)

For all of you MST3000 fans, here's a video entitled "Spring Fever"


Sally said...

Good for you with the big crocheting project, love copeland and snowdrops :-) great play!

Terri said...

rereading book series....makes me wonder what I'd reread if I did this??? good play!

angela said...

Tai Chi really is AMAZING. I wish for local classes and found one on dvd that I can follow.

And me too on the comfort food--I'm really craving chili but made ginger turkey noodle today...