Heading out…. (Yes, this is how our girls sometimes go outside to play).

Dear Friends,

I hope that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving — and I hope that you’re continuing to feel gratitude as you wash out the final Thanksgiving Tupperware and head on to the next holiday. We Gongs had a lovely harvest feast, complete with a set of grandparents and a dusting of snow — doesn’t get much better than that! We also managed to keep Gracie apart from the turkey, to take a family photo in which just about everybody has their eyes open and is looking in the same direction, and to take the girls cross-country skiing the morning after Thanksgiving — all feats requiring a mix of luck and Olympic fortitude.

Where we live, there are many cornfields. Having lived here three years now, I’ve observed how cornfields are plowed and planted for a few years, and then allowed to rest for a season. Come summer, I’ll notice that a certain field is no longer an orderly series of cornstalks, but instead is dressed in its natural grasses. This allows the soil to breathe and replenish before the field is planted again. Lesson here: Creation takes effort, and everything needs a rest.

So now I am going away (virtually speaking) for a little bit. As you can imagine, the holiday season at our house is a little crazy (as it probably is at your houses, too!), and this year it feels particularly busy. Whether that’s due to having more — and older — girls, a baby who’s still not quite sleeping through the night, or the near-constant stream of (very welcome) houseguests we’ve had since Halloween, I’m not sure. Probably all of the above.

Bottom line: I’m tired. And I haven’t had as much time to think or to write as I generally need for optimal mental health. At the same time, I’ve been trying to keep up with the pace I’d set for this blog, where I’ve been churning out at least one new post a week for two years (minus a few weeks of re-posts when Abigail was born). For two years, I’ve loved every second of writing The Pickle Patch, but it’s starting to feel like…work. A grind. Unsustainable.

So, since I’m my own boss here, I’ve decided to take some time off — send myself on a “Pickle-cation,” so to speak. I’m not going to publish any new material for The Pickle Patch at least through New Year’s. I’m keeping the end date of my Pickle-cation open, but I expect to be back here by February. I will continue to publish new material for On the Willows and The Addison Independent, because those are outside commitments, and I’ll post those links here in case you’re going through major withdrawal.

I plan to use my Pickle-cation writing a lot, but with the leisure of not having to publish weekly. I plan to sit back and reflect on what I’ve got to say, to think new thoughts, and to play around with new ideas that may or may not have anything to do with this blog. Above all, I plan to enjoy the holidays with my family without resenting early mornings or missed naps or late nights that might take me away from writing. My hope is that you’ll thoroughly enjoy your holidays, too, without feeling the need to read anything new from me!

With love and gratitude to you all, until 2014,



One thought on “Pickle-cation

  1. Pingback: A Break From My Break | THE PICKLE PATCH

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