The 12th mouse scampered across the kitchen as we sat in the living room drinking our morning coffee and wondering why the furnace had stopped working.

I stared in disbelief, sighed and then mentioned it (the mouse) casually to my husband, as I really did not want to ruin our coffee time; it’s one of the few quiet times we have during the day you see. Also, I should acknowledge the sudden impulse to crawl into a hole where there would be no mice, plugged drain pipes or 16 degree mornings. We looked at each other and said nothing; silence spoke louder and clearer than any words.

At that point the mouse scampered back and it did not stop and stare as some do (yes, I know that for a fact, as I am now some sort of Jane Goodall of mice). The stare back could be interpreted as no shame, I prefer to think of it as a ‘let’s get to know each other.’ There is a certain degree of smugness in all of that, to be honest. Somehow the mice know they’ll be the ones standing when humans trail out. So we will, at the end of the month and they’ll have their empire back.

I disengaged another trap as I tidied up the kitchen. It’ll be good to move on to a less snappy house that’s for sure.

ColdBut gratefulness still lives here. I am grateful for the felted wool arm warmers I made a while ago when the washer was still in use (I can tell you how, just ask.) I am grateful for all the laughs we have despite the fact that so many things are evolving in ways that are utterly counterproductive to a carefree existence and for learning to do with less when less is all we have.

I am grateful for the brand new bathroom in the house next door that we have access to 24 hours a day and for the nice view we get to see at night while we trail back to the our abode after taking a hot shower.

I am grateful that the boys learn to never take anything for granted and know that no matter what happens, when people stick together perspective brightens up.

I am grateful for the infrared heater that is keeping us warm, grateful for blankets and so many opportunities to snuggle with the boys and for all the things we’ve learned in the last three months. One of the things we’ve learned is to say ‘This too shall pass…’ because it does.

yellowThe sky is blue and streaked with long white clouds, and the river is subdued by light, hugged by its own golden shores. It is a good day, a good day to count our blessings that is. That includes the beautiful yellow flowers my husband brought home as a backup sun for those days when the clouds are stubbornly thick; a just in case measure you know. It matters.

To be continued…