February 25, 2017
Well, hello! Where have I been? Is it really nearly March? The bulbs seem to think we are well into spring now. The trees are budding, a bit early it seems to me. This winter has been so strange.
Thanks to a badly pulled oblique, there has been a lot more thinking in my life than doing. The few times I have thought to pop on, I found myself with nothing much I wanted to say. Sometimes, I even questioning why I am doing this in the first place...but I know: community, camaraderie, and even loneliness.
Since Cynar started his new job, the question has popped up again and again if we might consider moving. Most of our friends and family live closer to his work, and it isn't far from his in-season Dagorhir practice and our church. All of our frequented places are about twenty miles from our current home, as the crow flies, closer to thirty by road. We sometimes feel so isolated here. The idea of being closer to our people is tempting.
...and I have to admit, I have let my mind wander, in this frustrating time of rest, to empty-nesting days spent planting flowers, baking bread and knitting hats. Hosting a monthly book club? How about having a friend over for an afternoon coffee and chat? Maybe dinner and a movie? A younger me might have thought it boring, but now it sounds like a perfectly pleasant way to spend the days...among friends.
It would mean letting go of any delusions that I might someday have that rural farmhouse with sheep and goats and ducks. But really, that hesitation has always been there. Could we really live even further from our tribe? Maybe a younger me...the one with no roots, no really familial connections, could do it, but now? I have community now. Family. It is something I have had to grow into...being a part of a family, understanding what a home is supposed to be. As much as that independent younger me might not want to admit it, I need people. I might even like them. :)
So I'm not really sure what it all means for us down the road. What I do know is that my hat yarn finally arrived today. And the kitchen is in dire need of a scrub down before we make bread on Tuesday. Beyond that? I see good things.
February 12, 2017
Like many things in life, I enjoy the idea of also shifting our food choices throughout the year, changing with the climate...eating with the seasons you might say. My inner idealist dreams of the days when we would eat fully in harmony with this land, as true seasonal locavores. But the sensual side refuses to part with the tropical pleasures of coffee and chocolate. Don't get me started on all the spices I would miss. Compromises must be made.
Even without going fully local, I feel that shifting our food choices throughout the year is another small way that we can live more in tune with the natural rhythms. I think our bodies call us in this direction anyway, craving light salads in summers, and warm, heavy stew in the winter months. And with that, the idea was born...a seasonal recipe book, broken into the eight Sabbat seasons, and filled with recipes to keep us turning with the wheel.
I expect this project to be many years in the making...maybe even a lifetime. Maybe it will exist as a living document, rolling forward in time as new tastes enter our lives. Another handcrafted, one-of-a-kind work will be passed on. And perhaps in the future it won't just contain food recipes, but others as well...for handmade soaps, or beauty products, natural fiber dyes or tinctures. Anything and everything that we can and will craft. All in one place. I like the sound of that.
February 5, 2017
The days keep rolling us closer and closer to spring. Another week of cold behind us. This is how I talk myself through the winter months. In some parts of the country the trees are already beginning to bud, but here it will be weeks before anything dares to emerge.
Our break from school didn't quite happen as I envisioned. Astrid has been sick since Wednesday, and I have been trying to manage some annoying abdominal pain. We suspect that it is related to my gallbladder, and should have test results tomorrow (hopefully). Aside from a couple of quick trips to the grocery store, there hasn't been much excitement in our days. Mostly, there has been a lot of nose-blowing and screen time.
Last week, I put together a focus board of sorts, full of pictures borrowed from other craft blogs, to remind me of what I want to accomplish in the last half of winter. Part of this is overhauling my craft area, including managing the stash. Astrid and I were able to tackle that one. We sorted, folded, and stacked the contents of our overflowing fabric bin. For now, the stash is back in the bin, but I'll find a better home for it soon, when I can get some time to organize my craft space.
We are back to school this coming week, starting a new writing program, trying to ramp up into a strong finish for sixth grade. With my current health challenges, I'm not sure how much I will be able to get out, and I am hoping to have this sorted in the next week or two. For now, I think I will probably focus on another area of my focus board...getting back into the kitchen for some cooking and baking. Since Cynar started working we have been relying heavily on convenience foods, and I would like to shift away from that a bit. I have to find a way to put this spring energy to good use!