Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Rest and Joy

Sitting under the auspices of Gustav Klimt's "The Kiss", I took tea with Christina last night. The painting glitters between her sitting area and her dining area. She and her husband have a smaller place now that he changed jobs and they moved from the family home to house in Crawfordsville. Between the creams, golds and reds of her sitting room and the bold golds and creams of her dining room, there is a flow, a movement. I said yesterday, Christina is a dancer.

She has pain now and cannot dance with her legs, or knees. But, her voice lilts. Her thoughts float, her insights plie and pirouette  She said last night what I've been trying to practice, the act of thanksgiving makes a happy heart.

I keep hearing Madame Blueberry from "Veggie Tales" singing, "Because thankful heart is a happy heart."
I read in Ann Voscamp's book 1000 Gifts last night of her simple things. On days like today, when it was very very busy, and still should be, of simple things. Right now, I have those because I did not read the Epistle and Gospel in morning prayers with my daughter. I'm playing catch up.  I hear tell there are these things of which to be thankful:

  1. "There remains therefore a rest for the people of God." Hebrews 4:9
  2. Hot water. It is about zero today. It's so cold the car is randomly flashing engine lights and the internet service shivers and dies. The water main busted outside, but that could be because the water company picked tonight to work on the meter they left half installed and dormant in our front yard. 
  3. A short kind of dinner with my kids. Running from church, to kid's work/boy scouts/dinners/house blessings, makes it all very hard.
  4. That I had very little pain today. I've been marking my days by my ability to recover from what I now think was a stress fracture. I'm too busy and short of sick days to see if the doc will get me x-rays. I've been putting a tincture of knit-bone on this. 
  5. Words. Knit-bone is great. I re-read Annie Dillard's chapter from An American Childhood wherein her mother's play with language is recorded: Terwilliger (as in, Wayne Terwilliger), Tamiami Trail, Slippy. I love funny words.
  6. Talking about books with anyone. I get shivers of joy.
  7. Helping students.
  8. Cooking a satisfying meal for my family.
  9. Fruit and Blue cheese. No I am not supposed to have it, but I found a powder, which keeps me from having the symptoms that my intolerance usually produces. Fruit and stinky cheese are a gift from God.
  10. Olive Oil. Really. It makes every thing yummy. I thank God for creating these little things that make my rabbit food delicious.
  11. Sound minds and teachable moments. I had time today to light my crocheted shawl on fire, and the good sense to tamp it out without throwing over my head (first instinct) or tamping it against my dress (second instinct). My son asked why I didn't pull it off. I would have caught my hair on fire, I realized. And I reacted with the sense to avoid that. I have to celebrate this, because I started my first and only kitchen fire two years ago, for a thoughtless attempt to 'double-crisp" spiced popcorn in a toaster oven. Fire makes such a mess.
  12. Which keeps me regularly grateful for learning from  other's mistakes. I had just bought my first fire extinguisher because a student had one and the presence of mind to use it correctly to end a kitchen fire.
  13. When I used my one-time fire extinguisher, I donated it at the local fire extinguisher purveyors. They gave me a rechargeable one. I'm very thankful they GAVE it to me, because those buddies are costly. That said, it needs recharged or checked. They are to be maintained annually. I haven't had to use it- Thank God- but I should make sure it works if I do.
  14. There have been no fires in the family in the past year. Two years ago, my sister-in-law lost housing and worldly possessions in a house fire started by an unattended candle.
  15. A day off now and then. Yesterday was good for my soul.

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