Saturday, March 16, 2013

soup: mothers, artists, grace

We finally painted the dining room, took down the terrible metal mini blinds, and I really like how it turned out. The problem with renting is knowing how much to commit. Every single decision comes with the question of how long will we be living here, and we simply have no idea. I do not bring anything into our house without imagining packing it into a box one day. Finally we just decided to go for it anyway, and I am glad we did. Now, whether to paint the kitchen? 

I find myself feeling ready to be settled in a place. I like the idea of committing to a forever home, a neighborhood, and dwelling there for years and years. I like the idea of neighbors keeping company through generations like my grandparents, and banisters warped in places by the same hands growing older. I want to plant trees and gardens.

I like the idea of these things, but I also like to dwell in possibility. I like the possibility of putting everything in storage and us working remotely so we can travel around the world with the kids one day. I like the flexibility of renting, and I'm not sure I could choose a place I am ready to commit to for the rest of my life, like the ideal I imagine.

And so we rent, happily.

Stevens, the perfect English butler, has given his life to the service of Lord Darlington who is later discovered to have been a Nazi sympathizer. So dedicated to his profession, Stevens misses the most delicate emotional moments of life and now looking back must admit that he did not serve a great man, and in the process lost his chance at love and fulfillment. It is a heartbreaking book, and explores the question of how much do we sacrifice to a career or personal ambition? 

To my fellow mother/artists friends- if you read only one post, let it be this one. These words were life to my angst-filled soul . . . 

There are embers glowing inside you that won’t.go.out even though you have a human critter or two (or five) to care for and really don’t have spare minutes for artistic flame-fanning. You have a few domestic goddesses in your life and a few childless superstar artists in your periphery, and as my poet-friend Beth Ann Fennelly wrote:“I want membership in both clubs.” If we dedicate heart and soul and all our waking hours, we may at best become “Honorary Members” which feels sort of like a southern “bless-her-heart-she-tries.”

Other good things . . .

When the days are long and the minutes are longer: Chatting at the Sky (how can her every post be so darn beautiful? And she just finished the manuscript for her third book!)

In the kitchen this week I tried these sweet potato, black bean, and roasted pepper burritos. Two thumbs up all around.

This: what if the wilderness is actually the mailing address for God's people?: guest post at Sarah Bessey

my word: study in brown
I sat in my cramped airline chair and thought about the word, Who stood on the rim of eternity and spoke out those mountains and plains, these galaxies, this sun; the raindrops and tigers and pansies and tulips and the tiny green frog that sings in the tree outside my window; all these people with their hearts and lungs and blood and bones.
The Word. Made in His image, we are.  Speakers, writers, sharers, Word-breathers.
Writing can be a pretty desperate endeavor, because it is about some of our deepest needs: our need to be visible, to be heard, our need to make sense of our lives, to wake up and grow and belong. It is no wonder if we sometimes tend to take ourselves perhaps a bit too seriously.  ANNE LAMOTT : advice to writers

The house is quiet this morning, (thank-you Daylight Savings, I never thought I would see the day my children slept until 8:00), and I just looked up to see snow falling, everything is covered. 
May you find yourself surprised by grace this weekend. 

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