Keeping Warm

comments: 39




Good morning, dear friends! Hello! I'm alone in my office today, drinking my tea and tidying all the mess I've made here in the past few weeks. I'm seriously happy to say that the last of the pre-orders were dropped off at the post office yesterday and your kits are on their ways to you. Thank you again, so, so much, for your sweet orders and patience while we've put these together. As soon as I catch my breath I will put the PDFs up on my web site, probably by the end of the week!

Our furnace has been broken for the past few weeks. The furnace dude has been here probably five times so far. On to Phase II (expensive repairs). It hasn't been very cold here, luckily. The thermostat reads around 65 on most afternoons, which is a bit colder than I keep it, generally, but not too bad. I kinda like it now. We bought a few tiny fake (electric) wood stoves. I put one in the fireplace (which we never use to burn wood) and one in my office. Mimi already had one in her room. They really work great. I'm kind of used to having these little pockets of warmth around the house now. I only keep the heaters running when we are actually in the rooms, but if I get up to go to the bathroom or go to the kitchen or whatever, the hallways and the bathrooms and the stairwell greet me with a whoosh of cold air. It's kind of like hot sauna to cold-water pool, in a vague way. I'm wearing sweaters around the house, which I've never done. I pretend I'm Finnish. Once the furnace gets fixed, I honestly doubt we'll keep the heat any higher than 66 or so. We used to keep it at 70, but I'm guessing that will be too hot for us now. Beds are deliciously cozy. Mimi has probably seven quilts and sleeps with her fan blowing on her every night. Even in the middle of winter and covered in flannel and duvets she wants her fan blowing. I burrow down under the covers, drinking coffee in the dark, twinkle lights on a dimmer switch, watching the windows turn gray. It's a glorious time of day.

I'm missing my girl terribly today. She's at school and I'm . . . caught up. Funny how it hits you out of the blue as soon as you do get a few minutes to yourself, which, when you're in the thick of it is all you ever want. Quiet. Clean. But as soon as I do ever get a few minutes to myself, I feel so very at loose ends, missing the endless questions, the chatter, the Mama look!/Mama watch!/Mama look!, the piles of tiny pieces of cut-up paper, the hundreds of thousands of drawings left on every surface, the banana peels left on the desk, the shoes left anywhere and everywhere, the love notes written on sticky notes, their sticky strips grimy with crumbs and crud. It's baffling but happens every single time. Oh lord how I love her. Last night she chose to forego our nightly lullaby, which is a book about animals going to bed that I have sung out loud (to a tune we made up) every night for the past four years. Last night instead, without ceremony, she chose to read to me while sitting on her bed in her nightgown and robe, a Little Golden Book about a duckling. I forget which Little Golden Book about which duckling (there are a few). She's reading so well and it's like a dream. It is my dream. I had a flashback while she was reading, her hair falling onto the pages, to when I hung snowflakes from her ceiling, and time folded up right there, for a moment, and I caught myself hiding a sob. She was a baby and now she is a girl, sitting cross-legged, reading books, drawing dollhouses, writing notes. Every night before we move to her room, we sit in the big bed in our big nightgowns with our tiny reading light and she reads to me and I read to her. Teeth brushed, feet up, curled together, done for the day. She leans into my arm, perfect fit. We read and read. One more book. Warm and heavy. Linger here. Just . . . this.


Your useing less energy, Good for you, it's one thing we can all do, to reduce carbon emissions, thankyou Paulson family. JR

Sigh!...the BLISS of childhood...motherhood...parenthood!...I had a girlfriend tell me that we never know when the "last time" will savor every BLESSED moment!...her reading to you...LOVE IT!!!...Enjoy...savor! is all SO FLEETING!!!

Precious times and I got teary eyed reading it - bringing back memories of my kids (grown-up now) and my grandkids! How, I love those sweet times then and now, being a grandma, I cherish them all the more because they go by way too fast! Love your descriptions and I can relate to all of them. I received my order and it's sooo LOVELY and so is the wrapping! Thank you and so glad I found your blog years ago! Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

What a sweet post! Your heating issues remind me of my grandparent's house in London. My mom grew up without central heat; doors on each room off the unheated halls make so much sense. Even in the summer (when we would sometimes visit) it got chilly enough for the "fire" in the sitting room. One of the most romantic things I ever heard is the story of how my dad sent my mom the gift of an electric blanket when he was "courting" her. She passed it on to her sister when she married my dad and moved to the U.S. (where she didn't need to live without central heat again!)

Oh, my heart is so full reading your words! You are incredibly blessed to have each other, to hold, to read, to make messes, and clean them up. Time just goes way too fast, and then it goes faster! From my stage of life, I clearly see that we never love our children less or more as the years pass. We’re just left to wonder how big love is, how dear each child is, and how quickly the years roll on. So beautifully written, dear one.

Love your family and posts! Happy Thanksgiving!

I just love the feelings you evoke in your writing. I love the feeling of warmth in this post in particular. Just the thought of sleeping under 7 quilts with a fan blowing makes me happy. That's the way I sleep too.

And the Little Golden Books - what delightful memories tied up with those books.

Thank you so much for sharing these moments with us.

And so it goes....crushing and beautiful...our babies grow up before our very eyes. My baby girl is 13. She's a young lady and its terrible-fying and beautiful at the same time. Ouch! We're so lucky.

Lori Mullen says: November 28, 2019 at 06:35 PM

oh Alicia! I soooo get these moments and feelings as a momma of 4 girls who grew up singing bedtime songs and reading to their momma on the couch. She will be a lifetime best friend. Such moments to savor!

Sherie Rowe says: November 29, 2019 at 10:38 AM

My goodness, how time flies. My girl is now 14 and I truly understand time folding in on itself. Tears in my eyes.

"Time folded up" yes. Such a poignant time. Sweetness itself.

I have two girls, three years and 11 months. I needed this--thank you.

You are such a beautiful writer, a wonderful story teller, I enjoy your blog so much. At first I was drawn by your photography, you have such a talent, the fact that you're a very creative artist was an added bonus. But your love for motherhood, watching this precious little angel grow and become who she is meant to be...pure magic! Enjoy your holiday! Love

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.