About Me

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Douglas, Alaska, United States
I have lived in Alaska since 1978, having come to Juneau as a Jesuit Volunteer. I fell in love with Alaska and now live on Douglas Island with my husband and two dogs.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Hunkering Down

Here we are pre-performance last night!

After weeks of rehearsal, today was the final concert of the Juneau Bach Society.  It was the last thing that I had on my calendar for the next six weeks!  It is now time for me to hunker down for awhile.

I'm having shoulder surgery on Wednesday, and my arm will be in a sling for six weeks.

While this doesn't mean that I will be completely immobilized or helpless, it does mean that Christmas will be considerably scaled back this year (for me anyway).

Here is what WON'T happen this year:

1.  Our annual Christmas Open House
2.  Major decorating
3.  Cookie baking on a large scale
4. Manufacturing of icon Nativity scenes (in the past, we have made and sold these at Christmas time, but they are pretty labor intensive!)
5. House work (by me, anyway)

Here is what will happen this year:

1.  Quieter, small gatherings with family and close friends.
2.  A more thoughtful, measured approach to decorating, with an emphasis on family traditions.
3.  Cookies baked by Charles and the kids, again with an emphasis on the family traditional favorites.
4. Creation of small, hand sewn Christmas ornaments (which don't require a lot of arm movement), including a lovely little felt Holy Family.
5.  The finding and hiring of a temporary housekeeper to do some deep cleaning and maintenance  while I am unable to take care of housework (the rest of the family is capable of taking care of this, but having someone else do it will make the month easier for all of us!).

While I'm not looking forward to having surgery and the long recovery period, this means I will be able to actually have a quiet and reflective Advent this year, instead of running around getting ready for our open house and generally being grouchy for three weeks.  Friends have offered to bring meals for the first week of my recovery, which will make things easier for everyone - I am blessed with a loving community!

Christmas gifts will be fewer and simpler this year.  I won't be running so many errands.  I will be sitting at home, reading, stitching, and reflecting.

The snow is falling outside, the high winds have died down,  Miguel is making Jambalaya in the kitchen while listening to Cajun music.  Phoebe just arrived for Sunday dinner, Charles is in the studio and I am grateful!

Please keep me in your prayers this week!


  1. Prayers for successful surgery, a quick and as much as possible pain-free recovery and a time for peace and reflection.

  2. Paula will remember you on Wednesday and throughout your recovery! (((((Paula))))) (And the hug is the gentle kind I give dad - avoid the bum shoulder).

  3. I hope your surgery goes well and that you have a speedy recovery. Minus surgery your holiday plans sound wonderful.

  4. I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers! With shoulder surgery, it's vital to do the prescribed therapy, so I will be praying that you have strength and tenacity to get through that phase OK too! You may like this more subdued Christmas so much that you may want to adopt it in the future, LOL.

  5. Many prayers for you dear Paula!

  6. Paula - Sorry your are having to have shoulder surgery. I so need to have that done, but keep putting it off. As long as I can tolerate the pain, I'll wait. But, I know it will get to a point where it has to be done,

    Will have you on my prayer list for your surgery and recovery.

    Blessings to you and your family and a serene Christmas this year.


  7. I"ll be thinking of you tomorrow and for the next few weeks. Take good care and enjoy this more reflective Christmas season.

  8. I hope you are recuperating well and getting over the fuzziness that comes from anesthesia! I'm keeping you in my prayers!

  9. I hope your surgery went well and you have a speedy recovery.


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