I’ve stopped watching the news and reading newspapers. News stories have always been about the bad stuff that happens in the world, but today it is all so sad and what makes it worse is that the people in charge (both political parties and so many in big business) are doing whatever they need to do to maintain power and wealth. Everyone has an agenda; how do we know who is telling the truth? There is no care and concern for ordinary people. They are all crooks and thieves.
In a world that is upside down and backwards, who can we trust? There is only one who loves us all with a perfect love and that is God. Psalm 94 is one that I turn to for comfort. The closing verses give me hope and peace in the midst of the chaos of the world.
I can’t change all the wrongs in society, but I can lean on and learn from God then go about my life bringing that perspective into all my interactions with people. I can be a little ray of God’s light amongst the dark and pain. So can you. Your smile or small act of kindness could be the difference in someone’s life and day. Accept God’s love and his care then pass it on…the world will thank you.
I’m a clinger. I cling to those I love, the things I love (or think I might use again one day), and I cling to ways of thinking that are no longer productive. Letting go of any of these lifestyle choices is frightening. The “what if” monster starts whispering in my ear and fear of the unknown takes up residence in my brain.
Now, before I go any farther down this rabbit hole, I need to make something quite clear. I have not fallen into the realm of satan and I have not lost my faith. Quite the contrary. During the past few months, as I draw nearer to God and Jesus, I have begun to see and hear, evaluate and either accept or dismiss spiritual concepts that, prior to this, I automatically dismissed because they didn’t fit with my traditional view of God and the world. I was simply unable to ask questions or think anything outside the mainstream; it was too frightening. I had to cling to the belief system as I had come to know it or what else is there?
Then God began doing an amazing work in me. I don’t believe in coincidence. I believe that when I am in tune with God, listening and waiting for Him to guide me, He is right there with me. I read Holy Scripture, meditate on what I read and know that in the fullness of His time, God will reveal his truth to me and increase my understanding. This is just one of the gifts given to us when Jesus came to earth and then died a sacrificial death. We no longer need high priests to mediate for us with God. We can go directly to the source. Thank you Jesus!
The human mind is finite. We can only know and absorb so much before our brains short circuit and we shut down. A discussion this week with a friend about people with brilliant minds who burn out early made me think about this phenomenon. God knows what, how much and when I can handle deeper revelations about Him and the universe He created. God is huge. I always heard, “Don’t put God in a box.” I am now seeing I have lived as if I knew all I needed to know about God because I have studied the Bible. I delved into original languages; I even went to a Bible College so that I would know the truth and be set free. For a while my human arrogance, armed with this knowledge set about to show folks what I knew. It didn’t end well.
Now I take everything I learned and I sit with God and let Him teach me. I pray to Jesus, “teacher, teach me.” I am their sponge. Not amazingly, one by one tiny little scales are falling from my eyes and I am beginning to see things with a deeper field of vision. I am more sensitive to God’s movements in my life and am seeing my life in a brighter light.
I used to dismiss any idea of cosmic energy, energy from so called inanimate objects as new age hoo-haw, aka nonsense in my language. But, like so much in my universe lately, I am rethinking this concept particularly as it applies to the spiritual realm.
While worshipping crystals is clearly pagan idolatry, I look at who created crystals…rocks, stones, dirt, water, air….and think, God made those too. They are part of creation; could they bear some kind energy? Could they be more than the sum total of their molecules? I have no clue. But still, I wonder.
In another conversation with my same friend, he shared a concept from quantum physics that made my head spin. He explained in a way that my brain could grasp. The theory states that what we see doesn’t exist until we look at it. If I stooped to using emojis here I would definitely add both the mind blown and shocked face emojis to express how I felt when I heard this idea. Since I do not have a scientific mind, I found the following quote to be sure I could explain what he was talking about.
Let’s take a look at some interesting quantum experiments that point toward the mind-dependent character of reality… Fundamentally, we’ve got a situation in which reality at the quantum level does not exist until it is observed.
Bruce Gordon, Physicist, Mind Matters Podcast April 20, 2021.
The Energy Of Stuff
I wrote all that simply to say, I think there is energy that exists around objects. The things we cling to or are simply a part of the background noise of our lives – all things possess a certain energy. This is where I know I might loose some of you, but hang in with me.
Yesterday I told the story of the furniture that came to live with us last week. What I didn’t talk about was what I got rid of to make room for that furniture. This is an epic story of clinging to something far too long.
In 1984 (or thereabouts) I purchased a solid oak draw leaf dining room table, two Queen Anne style wing back chairs, and a vintage sewing table. All from approximately 1900-1940. I loved these pieces of furniture. I was married to my first husband who had bought the home we lived in without telling me he was doing it. I bought these pieces of furniture without asking him. Tit for tat. Almost. When I left him about a year and a half later I took these with me. I moved into my first apartment as a single person with just these items and my personal effects. Since that time I have moved them in and out of three different apartments before coming home to Stately Means Manor. Finally, I took them to use in my store before coming back home for good. I thought I loved them. I thought that they were important. Until I watched them loaded onto a truck and taken away to be donated.
I thought I would feel something. I felt nothing.
A few days later I realized that I am different. I am thinking about things in a new and different way. I feel lighter; more focused and free. Could it be that the negative energy from an unhappy marriage has been sitting in my home and my business all these years? I never thought about them in terms of the relationship. I saw them as tangible evidence of me taking a stand and doing something on my own. In truth, I outgrew them. I am finally allowing myself to be who I was created to be. I breaking free of being the person I think I should be and becoming just me. Letting go of the things and any energy connected with them has opened a new window into my soul and there is light shining both in and radiating out of me.
I have way more stuff to let go of and now I feel equipped and emboldened to do it. Things, whose very presence in my life, weigh me down. Things that a few months ago I thought I couldn’t live without. I am ready for them to find new homes. As Marie Kondo espouses in her theories of organization and possession – I ask myself, “Does this spark joy?” I now have a true frame of reference to determine joy vs comfortable. Do I keep these things because they are familiar and comfortable or because they bring joy into my life? Do they represent the life I want to create or are they part of a past that should remain in the past?
All this is a process, a journey that each of us walks in a different way and for different reasons. Some of you will resonate with my experience and others of you will think I have lost my ever-loving mind. And that is fine. It could be a little of each, but this is my path and all I see ahead of me is the soft glow of God’s love and light drawing me forward.
Sometimes being thankful is hard. Seeing the good in the midst of pain, sadness, illness, loss, grief, disappointment or even everyday inconveniences is sometimes a difficult task to accomplish. Life is messy. The holiday season is in full swing with the movies and television shows that portray a version of the happiest time of the year that many people simply cannot identify with or want to participate in. There are a myriad of reasons for this, all personal and no one else’s business; however, if this is you, I have been where you are, I understand.
To my aging vision, so many people seem hyper-focused on how they have been marginalized, slighted, ignored, overlooked, mistreated, or wronged. I don’t mean to dismiss them or their feelings; that is their reality and I would never deny someone’s experience. What I know about me and my thought process is when all I do is focus on how others have hurt, offended, or mistreated me I get bitter, resentful and more angry; I then allow my imagination to create scenarios that don’t even exist. It becomes a vicious cycle that steals the joy and peace from my life. There is no room for thankfulness. Because I understand my weakness for this mindset, I work really hard to focus on the good, the pure, and the kind things of life. It changes my perspective. It changes my mood. It changed my life.
I guard my brain. Please be careful who you listen to and what you allow into your head. Don’t let just anyone or anything make themselves at home in your brain. Be ruthless in this area. Change whatever needs to change to only allow the things that build you up and fill you with peace and love. The issues you used to stew over will still be in the world, but you will be equipped to tackle them from a place of love rather than anger. In my case I have stopped listening to political news. I keep up just enough to know what is happening but I don’t allow the pundits of either side enter my consciousness. It wasn’t healthy for me. I pray and I vote. I have peace of mind. I spend enough time being mindful of myself and all that usually gets me is worry and anxiety — over thinking is a true buzz kill. Now I write all those worries down and throw them away.
Pull Out The Pen & Paper
This might sound trite, but writing down all the thoughts in my head has transformed me. It goes by many names, but it is basically “stream of consciousness” writing. You don’t censor yourself. You just put pen to paper and write whatever is in your head. Sometimes there isn’t much, other times you will fill pages and pages with the thoughts that rob you of peace and mental quiet. Do a web search for this and give it a try. What you write is for no one else to read. In fact, the best thing to do is to think of the paper or journal as a trash can. Write then destroy. There is also something important about writing by hand on paper that seems to really work for most people. But no matter how you do it, get that crap out of your head and then refill it with the good stuff. This process is how I am learning to live in the moment which makes me more aware of those around me. Now I see the world through the lens of loving kindness; what used to annoy me I more easily overlook; what I used to ignore now calls my heart to action.
And finally, if you are the one in need—let others help you. You will actually be giving them a gift by allowing them to give. Accept what is needed today then pay it forward when you are able.
My hope for you is that this holiday season, no matter what that means to you, is one of renewal, hope and joy.
Is there such a thing? Not in my world there isn’t. I think that is one of the reasons I am drawn to the dandelion seed. With the help of the hair like protrusions called papus, the seeds float on the breeze until landing, hopefully in a fertile location. Most days I float without specific direction or purpose.
Change Is Good
I am four and half years into my life beyond owning a yarn shop and just a few months past ‘working’ on any kind of fiber business at all. These days I am rather aimless. Which is why I have come back to writing on this blog. But, simply recording the whims of my life doesn’t seem to be enough. I feel as though I do more whining that writing anything of interest or value. I want my words to make a difference, or at least be interesting enough to seek out every now and again. I am just a normal human being and my life is fairly dull. So, who do I think I am to expect folks to read what I have to say? I am working on a plan to correct that very problem.
The big change for right now is the address of the blog. I changed the extension so now you can find me at sherylmeans.blog. I decided I want to keep the .com address for a different use later on.
The definition of a successful blog is different for every person who undertakes blogging. For some financial gain is the primary goal therefore a blog that generates the necessary income is a successful blog. Still others focus on news, entertainment, or politics, in which case a highly engaged and large following is the determiner of success.
Blogging success generally depends on a few things – the blog must have a specific focus and purpose and, often, offers instruction in something. A blog with a specific focus is one of my personal favorites My One Beautiful Thing. If you have never read this blog I implore you to visit. Donna’s goal is to find one beautiful thing everyday and write about it. Her ‘etsomnia’ posts are fabulously hysterical and such a fun glimpse into the world of shopping on Etsy.
My Definition Of Success
I’ve been giving all of this a great deal of thought over the past few days, and have decided my blog title says it best ‘Little Seedlings.’ I am a teacher at heart. With my blog I want to plant little seeds that will grow and nourish other people’s soul – or at least put a smile on their face.
I consider my blog to be a success if even one person benefits from what I have written. This might seem like a low bar; of course I would love to have lots of readers and have an impact on the most people possible, but one is all it takes to satisfy me. The writing process brings me such joy and fulfillment – the main reason I do it – and the knowledge that someone somewhere has a better day because of my words, so much the better.
I blog to write. It is just that simple. Writing is my calling; it is that something that I must do every day. It is the thing that I can do all day and never tire of the process. Writing is also a craft that needs constant work to perfect. The nagging voice inside my head tells me that since I didn’t go to college I can never hope to succeed in writing to a level that is worthy of being read by people who don’t know and love me. I am working to silence that voice while finding other ways to educate myself. I will not be deterred. I have waited a lifetime to have the time and courage to find my voice and consistently write with a goal.
What To Expect
I am taking next week off to plan, research and celebrate Thanksgiving with my family. When I return I will have my new structure in place and a brand new post. I am excited to plan and have fresh ideas and stories.
What will you find when you come back to the blog from now on? Variety, but variety on a theme. I love a theme and themes will help me organize my content in a way that will make it easy for all of us. I need the structure so that I don’t wander aimless and over discuss the world inside my head. The structure will also allow you, my reader, to follow the kind of content you are interested in reading.
I will be experimenting with different kinds of writing:
Personal stories and inspiration,
Historical stories especially about women and their amazing ordinary lives,
Home and family.
I want to be here for the long haul. I want to write for myself, but I hope my words resonate with you and make your day just a little brighter. Blessings and Happy Thanksgiving to all.
The morning sun casts a golden glow across the landscape of my backyard. The sky prepares for the new day with a color that is reminiscent of sapphires. Soon dawn will give way to daylight causing the deep, rich blue to fade like a pair of jeans after years of wear. A new day has begun. A new day of a new week. What lies ahead? I know I must step out into the world to find out. No more staying home and pretending. Thus begins the internal dialogue.
I reach for my coffee cup. It is empty. Time for the next step in my morning ritual. First cup of coffee means writing my morning pages. The dumping ground for all the crap that circles around in my head. I need that place to rid myself of so many random and distracting thoughts. “What did I do before morning pages?” I mutter as I head back to the kitchen for my second dose of delicious, hot caffeine.
Morning ritual number two is coffee and 200 mg of Sertraline, which is the real secret to my sanity. My mind is an interesting place to live. And I live in my head. I live several lives in my head; not in the multiple personality kind of of way, but in a fantastical, what if kind of way. One day I dream of a quiet life in a small town and the next I am craving the excitement of big city living. The only life I no longer dream of is a rural farm life. I have come to grips with the reality that I was born in a city for a reason and until HGTV made so many different lifestyles look attractive, I never considered the rural life. It looks romantic and fun on television but the reality is that it is filled with the kinds of wildlife I really prefer not having as neighbors and the work is hard and dirty. I have the greatest admiration for those who are made of sturdier stock than myself and can live that life. I know my limitations.
While I don’t want to live a rural lifestyle, I need regular doses of nature to feel connected and whole. That is the reason I am headed to my personal getaway this week. I think I could live anywhere if I had ways to reconnect with non master planned nature. There are so many state parks in this country I would love to visit. I have a plan, but it must be strategized and implemented carefully so that I don’t send my husband into his corner to prepare for the boxing match of dreams.
Fear Of Decisiveness
I look around the suburban home I have lived in for 33 years, contemplating the last segment of life. I am a realist. I understand that I am living in the latter years of my life, and while I am not giving up to sit and rock – although I do love a good upholstered swivel rocking chair – I am likely making choices that will dictate where and how I live for the rest of my life. “We are only moving once” were the emphatic words of my husband when I discussed possibilities that would enable us to have the best of all worlds. Again I remind myself to “pick your battles” and retreat from this discussion.
I have no answers. I wish I had a crystal ball and knew definitively what we are supposed to do. So many people our age move closer to their kids and grandkids yet we are considering moving further away. In this modern age of connectivity we don’t have to fear loosing contact or being left out of each other’s lives by the distance between our homes. And yet…old fears of being alone crop up from my subconscious. These fears and doubts make me fearful and anxious. When I am fearful and anxious I attempt to fix all the ‘problems’ myself. It is as if when I put them in a box and tie a ribbon around them life will be perfect and all will work out just like in every fairy tale ever told. That, however, is not real life.
Tune To The Right Station
Real life is living each day being tuned in to God who doesn’t dictate a path but rather allows us to make choices and then learn from those choices. I am not a believer in cosmic fate; a predestined life that only has one outcome. That is terrifying. I know I would see something sparkling then wander off my path in search of the magic jewel and end up in whatever version of hell might really exist. It is much more comforting to know that God loves and guides. There are many paths that each life can travel, some better than others, but it isn’t an all or nothing game. Thank goodness.
So, when I get my brain into a tizzy over the future, I need to remember to step back and just live today. Go out into the world and make the best of today and let tomorrow take care of itself. And so, here I go.
Five of my most formative years were spent in this home. It looked different in 1969. It was newer, had fewer plants in the yard, and to my childlike eye, much larger and more grand.
This is the house we moved into when we left California for Texas. When my parents told me and my brother where we were moving I screamed, in classic old Hollywood style, and asked if we were going to have to ride horses. I then ran to my room sobbing. I was just sure life as I had known it was over. Despite my dramatic response, we did indeed move to the end of the world.
Yes, literally to the end of the United States as the town where we moved was located in the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. A literal stone’s throw from the Mexican border. I didn’t know it at the time, but Texas would wrap me up and make me an honorary citizen. I had found my place in the world and for all practical purposes I have spent the rest of my life here.
In my mind’s eye, the house is frozen in time. I can still see the terrazzo floors and the long hallway to the bedrooms. My brother and I would ‘skate’ in our socks down that hall and our poor dog could never get traction as she ran to chase a toy.
My bedroom was behind the window on the far right, my brother’s was next to mine and then the big window was the formal living room. Back then it didn’t have a garage. A carport was often the choice of home builders in the late 1950s. From the carport a small room was added that became my mom’s sewing room, and that led into the family room. This home was way ahead of its time as it had an open concept kitchen/dining/family room. And this is where most of life happened.
Fifty two years have gone by since we moved into this little midcentury home. The years have seen a great deal and taken their toll on both of us. Like me, a little saggy around the edges – nothing a little care and a manicure wouldn’t fix – but we are both still standing while providing comfort and shelter for our families and friends. The years I spent living in this home took me from a prepubescent girl entering the sixth grade (then still a part of elementary school) to a sixteen year old excited to drive and navigate the issues of high school. So much of who I am today began while living in this home in Harlingen Texas.
Going back to childhood memories is almost always a bittersweet activity. Nothing remains the same; time does not stand still nor should we. Life is meant to be experienced as we move forward ever evolving into the perfection for which we were created. Sometime there is value in a quick glimpse backwards before moving forward again.
Words like seasons, cycles and circle are often used to describe the life we lead and the never ending nature of life. Last weekend our family celebrated together as we witnessed a marriage and the beginning of a new season in all our lives.
Though life itself is continuous, there are endings and beginnings within the natural cycle. Just as the deciduous trees drop their leaves each year to prepare themselves for the long winter, so we too must let go of certain things so that we may be ready to move forward when a new season arrives.
The leaves do not go to waste. They are not forgotten. They return to the soil to provide what the earth needs for new growth. And so it is with people. A life well lived doesn’t stop when life on earth has ended. Whether genetically or through relationships and nurture, that life will continue to impact and nourish all who follow. This is a particularly comforting thought for someone who has no biological heirs.
Thus, one phase of the bride and groom’s life ended as this new one began. So, too do the lives of their parents and siblings, aunts, cousins and friends. Parents are now free to relax knowing they have completed this task and the future holds something new and exciting for them.
As the young couple begins their journey they do so taking all that has been given them both in nature and nurture. Who they are biologically, spiritually, intellectually and socially is all a product of their family and experiences; and now they will begin a new life and family passing along their unique qualities to their children.
Career choices, children, first home, where to live, and what kind of life do they wish to create…both parents and children are now free to make these choices. This should be a glorious time for all.
Letting Go To Grow
Every culture has their family and social norms and these tend to modify and evolve over time. My maternal grandparents never left the immediate area where they lived most of their lives. As coal miners and farmers there was no expectation that they would do anything besides stay where their families had been for generations. My father’s mother was born in Hawaii to Chinese immigrants. She was the first generation born somewhere other than China and most of her siblings stayed in Honolulu. My paternal grandfather’s family came from England and settled on the east coast and then Indiana.
The leaving home to begin a new life has been recorded nearly as long as humans have been on earth. It is a natural and normal evolution. My great grandparents and great great grandparents all did it; they left family behind in search of something new and hopefully better. I am so thankful for people with such intrepid spirits as they are the reason I am here today.
My Dream For This Season
I want to be like them. I would love to live a nomadic life for a short period of time. I don’t think I could do it forever, but the lure of the open road and living in a way that is completely different from my suburban Texas existence is very exciting…and romantic.
I believe there are certain physical locations where we connect on a spiritual level with the land, the people, and the way of life. I don’t believe I have found mine. And, at this juncture in my life, I may never find it. But I would love to try. I thought I felt it the first time I visited Vermont. Vermont is possibly the most beautiful state I have visited; mountains, lakes, streams and waterfalls visible from the side of the road…no billboards or other visual pollution…it is simply magical. But I don’t fit. My values and beliefs are not the same as the people there. So, I will be content with visiting but I could never live there.
I am, however, convinced that there is a place somewhere in the United States (I have to clarify as my dream would be England or Scotland) where I would feel at home in all the ways that are important to me. Or…I could discover, that I am indeed in just the right place – Texas – I just need to get out of the suburbs and away from the coast.
Just as the leaves must release their hold and drop from the life giving tree, what must die in my life to live this dream?
What Must I Let Go Of?
1. Putting Others First: I have a destructive habit of basing my decisions on what pleases others. While thoughtfulness is an admirable quality, when it moves into a way of life that denies ones own truth and purpose, it becomes a cancer that must be removed. These thought processes are created throughout a lifetime of small decisions until one day one wakes up not knowing how to make even a simple decision for their own pleasure. This in turn leads to a sense of powerlessness and ultimately anger and bitterness.
2. False Identities: I am not always sure who I am apart from created identities. I am nearly sixty four years old, I think it is way beyond time to figure this out. I know who I am as a wife, stepmother, grandmother, daughter, sister, and friend; but who am I? I create social media identities, business names, and creative pursuits, all in an effort to forge something that says to the world, “This is Sheryl Means.” I explore my ancestry to gain an insight into the genetic code that might reveal a hidden key to unlock this door. Thanks to the book “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron, I am working on unlocking many of these questions. I finally feel as though I am beginning to find my path.
3. Expectations Of Others: This is tightly connected to the first point. I perceive a certain level of expectation that others have of me and believe I am powerless to do anything except be the “good girl” and do as expected. This is a deeply rooted and difficult mindset to change. To disappoint someone I love is my ultimate fear. It seems selfish and wrong. Yet, living to the expectations of others is another denial of self; thus I live in a constant state of being disappointed in myself resulting in bitterness and frustration.
What Comes Next?
As grim as all that sounds, I am really in a good place. Now that the issues have been identified I must come up with specific and actionable steps to move forward from this place I currently inhabit. We have an obligation to our granddaughter to live life as it currently exists until the summer of 2022. Once she graduates from high school, our life as full time parents and grandparents will be over. My husband is self employed in sales and has the freedom to travel. Our time is coming.
We plan to move to the city where my mom lives. I had hoped we would be there by now but helping our granddaughter was a commitment we made eighteen years ago and we had to honor it in full. But once finished, that leaf from our tree will drop. It will be time for a new life to emerge. What will it look like? Where will we go? What will we do? Who will I be? It all remains to be seen but what I know for sure is that this season is just for us. As long as each of us is able we will travel, have fun, and I will be right here documenting the journey.
Where Are You?
No matter what season of life you are living there are things to learn; things to let go of; relationships to heal; and experiences just waiting for you to bravely step out and enjoy.
I highly recommend Julia Cameron’s book. When I am through with this one she has written several others I will read. However, and through whatever methods you choose, it is my sincerest wish that you are able to work through the old messages of your life so that they can fall, decay, and disappear so that new ideas and choices can take their place.
Once the title of my favorite soap opera, As The World Turns is now just a descriptive phrase for life in the midst of Covid-19. The earth keeps rotating; life moves forward, day into night and back to day…and if we aren’t careful the mundaneness of it all can and will destroy our very soul. But take heart! Each one of us has the power to break free and soar. Johnny Rose and his intrepid family showed us how this can be done in the now iconic television show Schitt’s Creek.
Lessons From Schitt’s Creek
For me one of the joys of the past few weeks has been the discovery of Schitt”s Creek. I have not been living under a rock, but until the Emmy’s last year I had not heard of it. When I noticed it available on one of my multitude of cable channels I thought, “I need to watch that someday.” I never did. Then it popped up on Netflix. Now I could watch it sequentially – as it must be for full enjoyment and impact – and continuously. The continuous watching just seems to happen. I tell myself I am only going to watch one episode and before I know it my butt has been glued to my recliner for several hours. At some point I realized that there is an end point and I don’t want that to come too soon. I must savor the morsels of poignant hilarity parceled out by the Rose family and their newfound friends in Schitt’s Creek.
There are many parallels that can be drawn between life during a pandemic and a life of financial and cultural exile. As I envisage the many similarities and the mercurial peregrinations, I cannot help thinking that a pandemic does not a life make! When one person shines, we all shine. Warning, my vocabulary has been permanently influenced by the verbose Moira Rose.
The pandemic has been a barbarous infliction on all of humanity. The hows and whys aside, the trauma and pain suffered has been catastrophic. However, we, as human beings are nothing if not resilient. There has been good forged in the fire of pain.
Like the Rose clan exiled to the town of Schitt’s Creek, many families have been forced to share very close quarters which has led to dragooned intimacy and the ensuing drama. The Rose family had grown comfortable in their estranged and dysfunctional life which was fertile soil for comedy. In less glamorous ways don’t all families settle into a comfortable way of interacting such that it takes something dramatic to change?
As vaccination rates increase and restrictions decrease, life is beginning to return to “normal.” What have we learned that should permanently change how we live?
Take nothing for granted.
Every aspect of life is sacred and should be protected at all costs. Friends, family, health, freedom, speech, religion…all are under attack and deserve defending.
We are more alike than we are different.
We are living in a time when those who wish to rule over us try to maintain their power by pitting one group against another. It is commonly called identity politics. I believe that most people want the same thing – a safe place to live, food to eat, education for children, the ability to work and self mobility, the opportunity to excel, worship, love who they love, live a quiet and peaceful life.
We are not promised a tomorrow. Live through fear by taking chances, trying new things, living someplace new, experiencing something you have only dreamed about. I have a dream of living somewhere different and have found that place. This place has the kind of historic home I want to live in, it has all the amenities I am looking for and is close to all my family (within two hours counts as close to me). I am ready to live that life. How about you?
I make yarn. Of all the avocations in the world, I chose the thing that women and children used to do out of necessity not for pleasure. Not only do I make yarn, I choose to primarily do it with the most ancient of tools, a spindle. I am a throwback.
According to Dictionary.com
noun 1. something a person does in addition to a principal occupation, especially for pleasure; hobby: Our doctor’s avocation is painting. 2. a person’s regular occupation, calling, or vocation. 3. Archaic. diversion or distraction.
Spinning yarn as an avocation began when, as a yarn shop owner, I learned how to spin. The ability to make uniquely beautiful, artistic yarn consumed me. It is still my greatest pleasure, and is now closer to what I describe as a calling and my vocation.
Every time I pick up wool and a spindle so much more goes on other than simply making yarn. I do love the yarn and find the process satisfying. Beyond that there are some universal truths to be learned by performing this simple act.
The introduction of twist into the fiber gives the wool strength. Too little twist and the yarn falls apart. Too much and the yarn kinks up on itself and is unusable. It takes a great deal of practice for muscle memory to develop so that my hands know exactly what to do which frees my mind and spirit for other things.
Life is unpredictable and sometimes scary. The older we get the more difficult it is to accommodate the social changes around us. We like stability. I have learned that just like when making yarn, if I allow myself to get overwhelmed and psychologically tied in knots, I am useless to God and humanity. If I let go of my connection to God—my spindle—I crash and am useless. If I allow God to gently guide my life I will be strong enough to weather any situation. There is no need to be afraid. I don’t have to be in control, I just need to yield myself and trust that God is greater than any problem I might face.
Until tomorrow may your day be filled with those things that keep you connected and at peace…