I find myself:
::noticing God's glory
I've been spending lots of time soaking up sunshine in my garden these lovely autumn days. The roses are making a glorious comeback. Perhaps to honor St. Therese? Mostly, we've been cleaning up and pulling away. I think, though, that tomorrow is the day for a fresh flat or two of pansies and some new compost and soil.
Soccer on TV. I was watching football. Mike changed the channel. This is an ongoing thing around here. I gave up. I'll blog. No one will notice.
::clothing myself in
Pajamas. I tucked myself in very early tonight. It's been a long, physical weekend and these quilts are so welcome!
::thinking and thinking
About how fleeting these days are. This time next year, God willing, all three big boys will be living away from the home I've made. And they will be missed.
“Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.” ~St. Therese of Lisieux
::Carefully Cultivating Rhythm
Stephen has soccer practice until 10:00, three nights a week. He trains about 40 minutes from our house, with no traffic. We didn't know this--could not imagine such a scenario, really--when we consented to this team. We're in it now. So, I've spent the last couple of weeks looking for silver linings and arranging the rhythm around this incredibly annoying fact of life. I've prayed super hard for grace on this one and I can sort of see the good emerging.
::creating by hand
There must be something about the nip in the air that inspires me to want to create. I've got some beautiful stacks of fabric on the way to be made into <<big breath here>> fairy tale dresses. The difficulty level is higher than anything I've ever attempted and I'm going to combine two different views, but Leisl Gibson assured me that I can do it. Honestly, if anyone can teach me how to do any of those new skills, it's Leisl. If she says I can, I believe her. Her patterns are so well written, anything is possible.
We've also chosen fabric and stashed for some new quilts. Autumn is like that--just inspiring us to find cuddle spots. Or make them.
And, oh-my-goodness-I'm-so-excited! Ginny has a new sweater pattern, just available. I've watched this beautiful sweater and pattern take shape and I'm so excited for her. It's kind of like when a friend has a new baby--the giddiness is contagious. I'm going to try this one, since I seem to be in a place where I'm tempted to try things that are more than my usual difficulty level. That sweater is so very lovely and the pattern is perfectly written, which makes me certain that a willing advanced beginner can be succesful. Each of my girls wants one. Since I'm knitting super slowly these days, I'm making no promises. Even if you don't knit, go take a look. She's been all domestic about her blog and it looks lovely:-)
::learning lessons in
Patience. I'm trying to slow myself, to believe that I have time to enjoy the process and that, sometimes, it's the process itself that has the real value. I've taken lots of deadlines off my calendar; they were suffocating me. Breathing is good. Very good.
Turtles! I rescued a box turtle from the street the other day. For two full school days, we were all about turtles. Reading, writing, observing, drawing. Poor turtle is so tired of my crew she's burrowed under some brush and called it a season.
for all the people who have joined our weekend prayer community. I carried your requests with me to Mass and I will keep a candle lit for you throughout the week.
Several of you have asked about Elizabeth DeHority. She's seen both Emily and Sam off to school and settled in with her three younger boys. She's fighting this disease--hard. And the fight is, well, really hard. Your prayers are so much needed and even more appreciated. Cancer is a formidable foe.
Still reading The Backyard Homestead. I desperately want to make this happen next spring. I can't have livestock, poultry, grains, or bees, so that "just" leaves the fruit, vegetables, and herbs sections. I can work with "only," right?
We always hear about spring cleaning. I'm feeling a major fall cleaning coming on. It makes sense to me. Just before we start closing ourselves into home for the winter, let's scrub it and dust it and clear out the clutter. I have the urge to make home cozy. First, make it ready and then make it home.
::towards being unplugged
Since Stephen's schedule gives me several hours a week in an internet cafe, I'm trying to limit my computer time to those chunks of time. It means that only these Monday almanacs are written in "real time" and other posts are queued up, a few at a time, over tea between 8:30 and 10:00, but I think that might be better, all the way around. It's still a work in progress, the rhythm of it all. I've also scheduled time for answering comments. Again, it's not always the same day as the comment is written and it's almost never in the moment, but the plan is to spend a chunk of time in the combox three times a week. I'm looking forward to the conversation. The rest of the time? I'm unplugged.
::crafting in the kitchen
We went apple picking Friday. Our yield was disappointing and I think we'll have to go again, but we do have about a bushel right now. Here's my challenge: grain-free, dairy-free things to do with apples. We've got applesauce. Now what?
::loving the moments
Mike replaced a toilet this weekend. That toilet hadn't worked properly for years. Literally. I remember hanging on to the phone with one hand, while Rebecca read fix-it-yourself toilet remedies to me on the other end about 5 years ago. It worked, but not great. Now, it's perfect. And you know, sometimes you don't know how much something bugs you until it doesn't bug you anymore. I'm actually loving the moments when the toilet flushes perfectly. Every. single. time.
for Facebook friends. I enjoy Facebook. I think I've learned what to post there and what not to post in order to keep things mostly pleasant and cheerful. Just now, Kamille from Redeeming the Table and I connected on Facebook. We're already friends on Twitter and Instagram and at MomHeart. But I'm happy to have found her on Facebook. (She's friend number 2,000 and I told her we really need drums and balloons and party. Or at least flourless cake. She's probably just the person for it.)
::living the liturgy
We're heading into Liturgical Year and Birthday Week Celebration overdrive, my friends. All the details from past years, mostly summed up here...
::planning for the week ahead
Hah! Here we go! Birthday Week begins at the end of this week. This week is about getting ready.
Michael turns 24 on Saturday.
Katie turns 10 on Sunday
Patrick turns 18 on Tuesday
Karoline turns 6 on Thursday
My big challenge: to personally remain free of grains, sugar, and dairy while making sweet celebrations for the birthday bunch.