"She refused to be bored, chiefly because she wasn't boring." Zelda Fitzgerald

Friday, October 20, 2017

Friends Who Drag You Out Of Your Cage

Yesterday was one of those days that I was reminded that I need socialization as much as the kids. I can be a little prone to isolation as an act of protection. I feel so inadequate and unable to appear "right" socially. My kids are wild, my house is too messy, I never have cool snacks in my day bag. When I am feeling depleted it's so easy to cut out all socialization because it seems draining and I must to just keep on and cut the fat. But, you know....it's no short cut to bliss. I am a creature made to live in the warm circle of a village and I wither badly by myself, no matter how much it seems like a clever way to streamline my life. 

I am just blessing my friend today, with the wild kids and the also lived in house, the friend who hugs me every time she sees me and never lets go first. I texted her and said, "I am so droopy." And she said, "Remember that group field trip you never signed up for? Its today. You should come. I'll call the organizer and get you in and I'll buy your tickets so that when you arrive if you're late you can still get in." And I put everyone in the car and went. And she hugged me so tight when I got there and we went on the hayride and the corn maze and petted the goats and hugged some chickens and we all felt better. 

I love and hate that other human beings who are dicey and intimidating and seem like the hardest thing in my life sometimes are also the place to go for a boost, for being truly seen and where I can know that I am not alone. Its kind of maddening but its so right and true as well. 
We are going away for the weekend to a cabin in the mountains for some apple roasting, fireplace stoking, tea drinking retreating as a family.  Just us and a bunch of plaid blankets. I am so glad I am going into this weekend with that feeling of social warmth on my back that I thought I was too overwhelmed to reach for. I need to retreat and to step out. There may be no short-cuts but only the necessary, true, brave action. I love that God is wise enough to put people in my path to disrupt me and pull me in while teaching me to be still at once. It's like He knows what He's doing. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Words On The Platter

     Sometimes, in order to get going again we have to push the ball down the hill in some small way. I have been long fallow here and now I'm back and grinding away like Sisyphus but in an attempt to help things take on their own momentum and joy, I'm just going light. This is my little kick off the edge.....here I am, with my pen in my hand again.

Lets just marinate in some goods words, shall we? It seems like a good way to begin. Here are some of my own, personal favorites. Which ones did I miss that you love the sound or feel of?

Utterly Enjoyable Autumn Words

Decidious
Scythe
Persimmon
Harvest
Cornucopia
Shadow
Cider
Sheaves
Snuggle
Golden
Quilt
September
Russet
Blaze
Fog
Rusted
Flannel
Crimson
Chanterelle
Meander
Crackling
Maple
Smoke
Squash
Harvest
Spider
Candle
Crisp
Aspen
Marigold
Hazel
Scarlet
 
And then, just because delicious words make me think of poetry, in a When You Give A Moose A Muffin Style....lets have a classic poem by James Whitcomb Riley. I like to imagine my farming great-grandpa, suddenly possessed of a desire to write poems speaking out these lines while he stumps along from orchard to barnyard to his masonry trimmed farmhouse where I was this summer. I miss him and I wish he could know my little boys and that I could marinade in his comforting presence and imagine they will turn out sturdy and reliable and warm, like him.

When the Frost is on the Punkin

When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock,
And you hear the kyouck and gobble of the struttin’ turkey-cock,
And the clackin’ of the guineys, and the cluckin’ of the hens,
And the rooster’s hallylooyer as he tiptoes on the fence;
O, it’s then’s the times a feller is a-feelin’ at his best,
With the risin’ sun to greet him from a night of peaceful rest,
As he leaves the house, bareheaded, and goes out to feed the stock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock.

They’s something kindo’ harty-like about the atmusfere
When the heat of summer’s over and the coolin’ fall is here—
Of course we miss the flowers, and the blossums on the trees.... (click here for the rest) 
 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The Seasons, As They Really Are

Here in the Bay Area we have arrived at September like everyone else but here it doesn't mean cooling temps and getting out the scarves and the tall boots. Just when your mind and the American Marketing Machine has you most primed for autumnal bliss, Cali has me all whip lashed. September and October usually hold the warmest, most classically summery weather. We have popsicle afternoons and pool dates and though the apples are ripe and we do indeed need to start prepping for Halloween, its best done in tank tops and shorts. 
We have not had a particularly hot summer this year and there have even been times when it felt a little too chilly so it feels so odd to remember that its expected that we get this heat wave and start using our A/C now.

I am thinking about how in the world I can catch some of that fall flavor in summery ways. I had an iced chai tea the other day because......autumn flavors + summer temps. I want to start making roasts and wearing my hair down but its time for a little bit more warm weather celebration before we get there.

Time to go apple picking and plan one last camping adventure at the same time. Californian Autumn means a different thing and I have to start adapting in my own mind to this reality that is my world and my neighborhood. I love hearing and seeing all the seasonal markers that are different here and owning that fact that we have seasons....just different ones, or even the same ones with different markers and signifiers.
I wanna be the kind of woman who is curious about her world, open to her own microsmic environment and the story that its bringing. It may not be what I am primed for, what the general public talks about or what I have ever seen before but...its mine. Really, in some ways this is the story of what I am learning as a grown-up in general the last few years. My marriage, my kids, my housekeeping, our schooling, my reading schedule, my art career, my own professional life and personal development, my spiritual unfolding...none of them seem to trot down the expected trajectory. I am trying to let go of what I thought I'd have and see and know and instead wipe the slate blank and draw what I really see, like they tell you in art. Instead of drawing the projections of my own mind and expectations, what people tell me I see or should see....instead, in faith, I'll just step into the season I am really living and try to learn to love it in all its difference, and variation and cope with the odd bits and sooth my own nerves about how it isn't what I thought it would be.

Because, truth.....its what it is and its also beautiful, even if unfamiliar.