Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Mother Letter Project -- You're Invited to Write!

It has all the elements of the most romantic movie -- and you're invited to be part of it!
The Mother Letter Project is a surprise Christmas gift for the wife of a very romantic, creative husband -- a letter blog consisting of letters from mothers to mothers, covering any and every aspect of mothering you might think of.
You can read all about it in Robin's post on Inspired Bliss, here, as well as Robin's e-mail interview with "Secret Daddy" the sweet husband who thought of this. And you're invited to write a letter to a mom to be part of this project/gift!
If you do write a letter for The Mother Letter Project, please let us know in a comment here, so we can celebrate your creativity, too!

A Real Thanksgiving

What a wonderful Thanksgiving!
We used to drive ourselves crazy trying to make sure our kids didn't kill one another as they grew up.
“Someday you'll be friends with each other, and you won't want to be holding grudges for silly things you did to one another growing up,” we used to tell them as they rolled their eyes and stomped away.
We'd insist on apologies. We'd arrange opportunities for bonding. We'd talk and talk and talk about “how good and lovely it is when brethren dwell together in unity.”
As far as we could tell it wasn't making all that much difference.
Until they actually did grow up.
Now, they really are friends with one another. They enjoy getting together. As far as we can tell, while there is still a bit of occasional friction, they aren't holding any grudges too closely to their hearts.
Which makes family gatherings delightful, full of laughter, good conversation, and fun.
It was worth all the hard work, and then some.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Indulgence and Luxury

This morning I indulged myself, and watched the sun come up.
Making time to watch stars fade as the sun washes over the sky is a luxury I usually forgo. There are too many things to get started on, I tell myself as I bustle around accomplishing my early morning routine.
Once in awhile, though, it's a good thing to just sit with a mug of hot coffee and watch morning come.
Today the moon was the thinnest sliver of crescent, hanging like an ornament between the branches of the sycamore. Dry leaves have caught in the big hostas, and a few leaves still litter the back yard. The yard is colored in the browns and bronzes and dull greens of late autumn, but the sky -- the sky was pink and orange and a thin rim of scarlet overtaking the blue of night.
Indulgence and luxury in the back yard -- what a way to start the morning!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Hymns, Again

I love hymns. I've loved them ever since I was a little girl sitting in the midst of a congregation of people who loved to sing them, who sang them well, and who loved to share their passion for hymns with anyone who listened.
Since then I've found a lot of different ways to enjoy hymns. Valerie, who blogs about music for Inspired Bliss, recently highlighted Bart Millard in her Music Video of the Week.
I wasn't particularly familiar with Bart Millard, but I'm a fan now! Check out Millard and his band with I Saw The Light! Hope you enjoy this as much as I do!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

One Good Shopping Idea

My friend Jackie worked many years in Bangladesh, founding a company celebrating the handmade. Motif offers exquisite fabric items designed by Jackie, a noted British designer, and now we can order them online ourselves at Chelle.
Chelle offers bags of all sizes, and you won't believe how lovely they are! I'm getting ready to order at least one for myself, but it's hard to choose! So far the bags I've looked at online are roomy, designed with zippered tops, as well as interior pockets for phones and all the other paraphernalia we all carry around. The colors are vibrant, the designs fresh and lovely, and the fabric is beautiful. If you're looking for a gift for someone you love, this might be it!
I'll be writing more about Jackie's story soon, so watch for it! And in the meantime -- check out Chelle!

Monday, November 17, 2008

One Sure Sign . . .

It's snowing here this morning; the flakes are just drifting down, one at a time, but already I can see little skiffs of snow in the grass by the driveway.
I can't avoid it any longer: the season is changing. You'd think I'd have figured it out when I had to get out my winter coat and gloves, but the trees still were dressed in gold and orange, so I pretended the cold was just temporary.
It's not.
Even I can see that now, with these snowflakes making the view from my window look like a snowglobe.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Of Queens and Kings

It's been one of those weeks when every moment seems filled with things that need to be done.
This evening I had a long list: a little hand laundry. Clean the refrigerator. Write some Thanksgiving notes. Plan a Thanksgiving dinner menu. Read two chapters of Group Dynamics.
I didn't get any of those things done. Instead I got caught up in the PBS series on the British monarchy, specifically The House of Windsor.
What is it about royalty that so captures our imagination?
The palaces are lovely, and Queen Elizabeth resolutely good. I am amazed at the number of people it takes to enable the queen to do all the things she has to do. And she seems to really like people.
I think that's the thing -- she seems to really like people. That's reassuring, the idea that somewhere there's a King or Queen who really cares about the people s/he rules over, the people s/he serves.
I think there's something in us that looks for someone to honor. We want to look up to someone who consistently does the right thing, who is honorable and kind and good.
That's why a bad King or Queen is such a bitter disappointment. Not only do we have to deal with their evil deeds, but we have to cope with their dishonor. It's a shameful thing, in the most basic sense.
Queen Elizabeth has kept faith with her subjects, and deserves their affection and honor. It's a lovely thing to see.
It makes me think of the King we honor, the One who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the One who will reign forever.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The past day or so has been windy, and leaves have been raining from our trees. The back yard glows as if it's lit from within; golden leaves on the ground and the few still hanging from branches create a circle of light that brightens up even this rainy grey day.
Leaf-rakers and leaf-blowers and leaf-mowers are all busy trying to clean up the natural clutter; it's almost as futile as cleaning up after kids. Eventually the yard will be clean again, and so will the house, but in the meantime chaos, in the form of what looks like a mess, reigns.
Sometimes someone will assert that clutter (or a mess) is an indication of creativity, that it means someone is busy creating. I think it might be more accurate to say it's a sign of life, that someone or something has been busy living.
Perhaps those two are the same thing, creativity and life.

Golden Circle

It has been a lovely autumn.
The color around us has been rich, vibrant, long-lasting. Burning bushes all seemed to turn scarlet all over, all at once. Oaks are burnished and bronze, and maples looked as if they'd been dusted with orange and gold and red.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Two Quick Web Adventures

I love the way the Internet allows us to go exploring from the comfort of our own desk chairs!
Here are two things you might find interesting: the preview of a documentary, Rumblings of Imminence, about the New Madrid fault (coincidentally written and produced by my son!)
And my newest post on Inspired Bliss about coffee and conversation with my best friend.
Take a few minutes and go exploring!