Sometimes, oh who am I kidding, most times, I am so caught up in noticing what I don’t have, that I forget to remember the things that I do have. Do you ever do that? I mean, I know I’m grateful and blessed, but some days that’s more of an intellectual reality rather than an immediate one.
But today, as I sat surrounded by blankets, in a warm house, chicken stock on the stove, clean (ish) house, babes by my side as I knit I truly felt blessed. I’m done with winter, but one wicked cold day pushing us all closer together was a reminder about just how lucky I am.
Remind me of that if I ever forget?
Just a random scatter-graph of images that I found on my phone. I’ve barely picked up my camera in over a month or so; I’ve kind of lost my ‘eye’ as it were. Take these as you find them – all over the place and indicative of a lot of same old same old going on.
Ever since I entered this city I’ve always had one foot out of it; I landed here by ‘accident’ and swore to myself that very evening that the first chance I had I was out of this dump. Seems the universe had other plans, because not only did I stay, I got married and had two kids! It seems as though being here was what was needed, but I’ve never really accepted this with good grace; I cannot hide my dislike of the town that trapped me.
In a sense then, I’ve never felt settled here. As much as I’ve tried to forge a home and a way of life, there has been that other persistent side of myself that was always planning for a getaway and a different life. The thought of getting out is possibly the only thing that kept me sane, but also became a means of my entanglement – I planned not for the life I was living but the one I was dreaming.
I’ve accrued a lot of clutter and baggage with that.
Recently I’ve been having dream after dream that I need to get on a train, or leave a place of danger in a hurry, but I stop to pack my bags which leaves me the last one straggling behind, and once I’ve packed up the bag is too heavy to carry. Hmm, yeah no therapist needed. I needed to let go if I wanted to get on that train.
So. I’ve given up on certain ideas, certain wishful thinkings, and I’m letting go more and more, being as an observer in my own life. And that manifesting itself as a need to let go of material things too. I’ve ransacked the house and sold or discarded anything that doesn’t either sing to my soul with its beauty, or have some use. And it’s shameful really how much that was. And a funny thing happens when you let go of things – they let go of you too, and it’s almost as though instead of owning, you’ve been owned.
I’m craving simplicity, and white walls! I’m craving the need for living according to need, and not want or greed.
The shroud, as the saying goes, has no pockets.
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I have few words and even less will to write them. These past few weeks have seen a shift somewhat, and I’ve rarely picked the camera up. Changes are afoot, and the who the what and the when are still nebulous clouds to negotiate.
The boys and I celebrated the solstice and have hunkered down ever since. Family paid us a visit which contributed to the feel of holiday and cheer and we’ve slid seamlessly to the end of the year. Time to take stock, make plans and grab the new year by the horns, so to speak.
I wish you and your family a wonderful year ahead. Here’s to 2017.
Last week the boys and I took ourselves off for a few days to a cottage on the edge of the sea, in the middle of nowhere, to recharge, unplug and reconnect.
We did a whole lot of nothing in particular, but it felt like we had stayed months and months. Staring into a fire with nothing more demanding than making tea and crumpets is a great way to get things into perspective.
The boys had a fine time, and me, well I felt as though I could finally breath for the first time in years.
I’ve been enjoying getting quite a few prints out into the world. I enjoy making up the parcels – trying to imagine what it is like to receive them. I think the best part about independent crafters is how special they can make their packaging, and the personal touch that many include. I love making the envelope look like something exciting, and I hope the contents don’t disappoint.
With each order that comes in I am truly humbled. I never take this for granted. Love really does go into each one.
In a rose-coloured flower vase above my bedside table, for want of a better place to shove them, lay the sum total of years and years worth of adventures, attested to by remnants brought home from days out: tickets, stickers, receipts. I had grand plans of making a scrap book of such things, not only for our own memories, but also as evidence of ‘educational days out’ should any official demand to know what we do all day (thus diverting him from the real answer which would be ‘laundry, fight, and minecraft’). I finally realised that record keeping is not me, and instead of trying to organise the mountain of receipts that lay rammed in the jar, finally conceded that ramming things in jars is about my level. Going with the flow I found this box and stuck some maps on it to give the impression of artistic flair and organisation – then I emptied the rose-coloured vase and rammed everything in the box instead.
It sits in our living room, alongside our memory jar, and every so often the boys will take a rummage through it, and more often than not, remember a funny thing that happened. We mostly forget the bickering that obviously went with the experience and remember the fun we had instead. It’s a good way to remember the places we’ve been, but more than that, it’s good to remember the people we’ve been.