Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday night grateful moment

What a week! When the week is kicked off with a day called Labor Day, you know it's going to be full... to the brim. Kind of too full in some ways, but good.

*Thankful for the long weekend, and extra days with my men. It was absolutely delish to be able to be here at home, not on the road to and from somewhere else, and enjoy concentrated time together. Felt special.

Seth ricing potatoes for a special Labor Day steak dinner!

*Thankful for sleep. I napped on the weekend to make up for some less-sleep-filled nights last week, so got caught up... mostly. Looking forward to doing a bit of the same this weekend too.

*Grateful for these cooler nights. To have the slider open and feel cool breezes, rather than still, warm air. Very nice. Probably has something to do with the good sleeps! And the cooler nights have something to do with the garden slowing down as well, I suspect... not quite the deluge, when I was out inspecting for tomatoes at lunch today.

Plums from our tree. Best crop ever this year!

*Grateful for my kitchen. I did a lot of canning and preserving this week, and really utilized my space! I have had many kitchens in my adult life, and this one is by far my favorite. For many reasons, but size and counter space have a lot to do with it too. Room for cookbooks doesn't hurt, either. And Seth can cozy up and do his homework, we can talk and catch up on his day; all those things make it one of my favorite rooms. Now, the dead zone right smack in the middle of the kitchen for my iphone? Doesn't help, but I can deal with that...

Our first cantaloupe of the season. Yummy. Look how thin that rind is--that's the way it's supposed to be, when it's vine-ripened!

*SYTYCD Season 6 is rolling. Happy. Thankful. Grooving.

*Tears. Oddly, I'm often thankful for tears, whether sad, cathartic or joyful. Tears have a real purpose in the world, I think. Other than the workplace. I am not a fan of crying at work, just saying. Take it to the restroom. Or at home over your lunch hour. Ask me how many times I've had a good cry in my car, for instance. Anyway, I heard someone tell a story yesterday and tears came to her eyes. A few came to mine as well--I have a sympathy reflex that often kicks in (unless you're a faker, in which case I can tell, just warning). It was a warm moment, and made me reflect on the universal connections we share, and the desire to impact others and acknowledge their impact on our lives.

*A sweet new life joined our world this week. Well, I'm sure many little bundles joined the world this week, but for our family, there is only one new little bundle that really mattered this week, and he's a sweetie. I had a few moments of nostalgia, thinking back to the joy that surrounded Seth's arrival... sniff... almost 13 (gack, choke, really?) years ago. And then I handed him (the new babe, not Seth!) back. Whew.

*My love for color and texture and fabric and all things associated therewith was reinforced again this week with a visit to the new fabric shop here in Walla Walla... and I signed up for a class in a couple of weeks. So excited to try out some of my hair-brained ideas with my fat quarters... it will take some faith to pull out the scissors and go, but give me a few quiet, rainy days and I'm pretty sure I'll work up the nerve!
*Grateful for yummy local food... I had another Creektown lunch this week with a group for nonprofit colleagues and it was tremendously good. How good? Four-cheese-gnocchi with fresh corn and cream sauce good. Holy gnocchi. Does it surprise anyone that even with multiple cups of coffee I came home and closed my eyes for a bit? Granted, we'd been in meetings all day to that point, and my meeting stamina is greatly reduced from years past, but still... it was heady stuff. Perfect Bite-worthy, really.

*Grateful for words and thoughts and the ability to get them down on "paper." A girlfriend and I have been mulling a small writing group for a while and are going to try and get it together here this fall. I'm really looking forward to a few enforced deadlines and some critical eyes on whatever it is I end up spilling out onto the page.

*Along the words line... a poem came my way this week that really hit me. The poet, Mary Oliver, is one I will explore more. I have been completely out of that realm for too long... looking forward to doing some reading and writing in this genre.

When death comes
When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measles-pox;

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it's over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it is over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.
--Mary Oliver

Powerful stuff. The last three paragraphs... all I can say is, "Amen."

*Today is a day of remembrance... I'm thankful that we're eight years removed from the nightmare of 09-11-01. I am grateful that we haven't had another such attack, and hope and pray we never do. Today I thought back to visiting the Twin Towers in 1997, and enjoying a wonderful farmer's market that was set up just around the base of the buildings. I bought the most amazing rugelach there... I swear, I can bring almost any memory back to food. And then when I was stranded in San Diego on 9/11/2001, dear friend Corinne was there with me and we watched CNN nonstop--and then we went shopping (helping the economy move forward, we told ourselves) and ate at a fabulous restaurant in La Jolla. Again, food; a helpful way through rough times!
I hope that where ever you find yourself this weekend, you're safe and sound and feeling blessed. I know I am. Cheers!

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