But the days are short now, and we must make the most of them so as to have some time left for reading and study.
The Old Farmer's Almanac
I don't often express my own thoughts when I post a quote du jour. I usually just let the words speak for themselves. But I can't resist writing a bit about this one. You can't read a magazine or an online article on the Christmas season without hearing about the stress of shopping, decorating, baking. Each one offers ways to take shortcuts to give us more time. 'Don't try to do too much' the articles say. The reader gets advice on 'how to make a simpler Christmastime.' When did all this madness begin? I don't remember my mother running around, harried and cranky. I remember Johnny Mathis on the stereo and the beautiful tree. I remember the fir boughs and lights on the front porch. Maybe people didn't used to buy so much? This whole Black Friday thing feels like shopping gluttony to me, especially when it begins on Thanksgiving Night. What happened to sitting around with the family and friends relaxing?
With all the business and busyness of these days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, can you imagine anyone taking time for 'reading and study??' I sure can't. And The Old Farmer's Almanac didn't say a word about the bustle of the season; just that the days are short. You notice also that the quote doesn't say anything about the evening. That's when many people read now. Our days are way too busy to pick up a book at say, three o'clock in the afternoon. We would think we were being lazy.
I'm not a person who has a lot of nostalgia for the 'old days.' There was as much good and bad then as now, I truly believe. But reading these few words really got me thinking and wondering if maybe we aren't missing something very important. We need time in our days to read and study. Quiet time without machines, without other people, without noise. No matter where we live, we can put on some soft Christmas music and just sit. Sit with a good book. Maybe even study a history book or a biography or a guide to wildflowers. What a difference it could make in the whole world if each one of us gave ourselves the gift of a little time each day 'for reading and study.'