Our sense of the world is shaped by what we experience. A child's first sense of place is the home. Memory is formed in the landscape of home. What must it be like to have no home, no safe place? What must it be like to have to leave a beloved home because of war or persecution or poverty?
I have deliberately created a place my children can rest. All children will come to know the inevitable ugliness that exists in the world. Memory of rest and beauty and play can be a lifelong balm to adult angst. Is this where optimism rises from?
Clearing blue sky, a promise in bare branches. In winter, there are sunny days. In adulthood, childhood can return.
Sometimes it seems that I am fully engrossed in life at the present moment - busy, integrated. Other times it is like waiting at a train station. Transition, limbo, a liminal state. Waiting to get to the next place of rhythm to settle back down. What is the destination of the ticket I hold? I don't know. And that is okay.
Stand at the precipice, that existential darkness, and call into the void: it will surely answer.
More snow today. School delayed by two hours. At least the sun is shining in the window right now.
Finished up this little squirrel for a special order in my etsy shop. I was excited to use some of the German mohair I bought a while back. I think it makes a spectacular tail.
As I was tidying up my desk top, I collected these papers that I have used for blotting while painting. I enjoyed looking at them. You can see where I cut out a pattern for squirrel legs from one of the papers.
The bottom photo shows a painting exercise I did from Heather Smith Jones' book. I really like this book and look forward to trying more of the exercises.
I want to do some yoga. I read this and it makes sense to me right now:
Twist and become whole. Bend and become straight. Empty out and become full. Expend energy and be renewed.
Two days of snow. And it is still coming down. Another storm forecast for tomorrow night.
Inside a lot. Cabin fever? Being shut in makes me investigate my internal dialogues more closely. Wondering what is enough. Enough material comfort. Enough love. Enough success.
There is so often too much here in the United States. I am overwhelmed by excess. Just this morning my mother bemoaned her feelings of distress upon entering a K-Mart earlier this week: too much stuff, too much needless, poorly-made stuff. I would also say that Americans, amid our great material comforts, often worry excessively about security, or the sense of a lack there of. (Elizabeth posted this, which points to our conflicted culture.)
Excess and overload. Here is what the Tao Te Ching says:
Hold to these principles: Seek simplicity, grasp the essential, overcome selfishness and wasteful desires.
Great trouble comes from not knowing what is enough. Great conflict arises from wanting too much. When we know when enough is enough, there will always be enough.
Painting and sewing animals. Wondering how I might combine these two?
I went for a snowshoe on the mountain behind the house last weekend. As I came back toward home, I found that my husband and daughter had come part way up the trail on their skis and left this snowman and the little message written in the snow with the bottom of a ski pole.
We have two more feet of snow on top of what you see in these photos. I haven't seen so much snow in years.
I have been moving slowly along with my goal of making a granny square crocheted afghan. I am enjoying the process, and I think I have gotten far enough along that I am now very motivated to finish. Since I started without a specific pattern I am making things up as I go along. Luckily, the granny square is very forgiving and flexible.
I went to the yarn store last week to purchase more yarn for the afghan. While there, I saw one of the most beautiful scarves I have seen in a long while. The store owner handed me the pattern and directed me to the Noro yarn that I would need. You can see the skeins in the above photo. I will hopefully cast on this weekend.
In the third photo you can see another corner of my work room. I really love the prints of models for wooden toys that I bought from here. I framed them in inexpensive frames I bought at Target.
Today we were hit by a large snow storm. The kids are home, and I have my friend's kids here as well while she is at work. Busy!