The Fragility of Routine

I have a new routine. I don’t generally “do” routines as I rarely do the same thing the same way two days in a row. At least that is always what I thought. Then my brother said, “I bet you do and just don’t realize it.” Yeah, I think he is right.

I do wake up and drink coffee. Every. Single. Day. And now I have a routine of how I fix my refillable coffee pods each morning. I then take my morning coffee and checked Instagram, emails and text messages, which led to Pinterest, more Instagram, and maybe a game or two and then catch up on television. I am embarrassed to say that this routine ate up hours of my life.

My new routine is much like what I wrote about in Suburban Sunrise. Coffee with God, nature and no electronics. Sometimes I bring my Kindle out to read with my second cup of coffee. Now that the weather is delightfully autumnal, I will be spending much more time outside. Maybe even upping my vitamin D levels a bit in the process.

Routine Interrupted Then Found Again

I tell you all that to say that the reason I didn’t blog yesterday was because my routine got interrupted. Prior to this delightful weather, we had a day of overcast, wind and light rain. All that warm humidity bumping into cooler temperatures will do that. It was Monday and the man who mows our yard was due and I failed to get money to pay him which necessitated a third trip to the grocery store in three days. He comes early so I had to get started even earlier. Thus, no routine. Once home from the store I got busy doing other stuff and there went the day. It disturbs me how little it takes to throw me off kilter. Kind of like a top spinning round and round, the slightest nudge and it goes all wonky until it finally falls over. And that was my Monday.

Today my routine was intact. A brisk, breezy 54 degrees outside, I donned my flannel jammy bottoms, t-shirt, sweatshirt, and thick socks to sit outside. I love it. My blood is still summer thin and I’m not going to lie. I was shivering. Not teeth chattering, but just a little shiver. I contemplated more clothes, a hat or a blanket, but decided to guts it up and have “wild coffee” in my backyard. And wild it was.

While I was looking down I heard a tree branch moving wildly and thought a squirrel had jumped from it to the roof of my neighbor’s house. I didn’t see anything on the roof, but out of the corner of my eye I caught movement higher up in the tree. Sitting very still I watched that spot until I realized there was a huge red shouldered hawk up there. I got up and got my binoculars to get a better view. After several tries I aimed the binoculars just right and there he was, pecking, pulling and devouring whatever it was he just caught. By the looks of what was falling to the ground, it was a small bird. Fascinated, I watched him eat. Take a bite. Look around. Repeat. When my dogs inside the house began to bark at who know what, he hunkered down as much as possible before repeating the eat, look, eat cycle. I was mesmerized. When he was finished he spent a great deal of time rubbing the sides of his face on the tree limb, removing any residue and cleaning himself before moving on. Skillfully he jumped from one branch to the next, where he would have an open path out of the tree. After a moment of surveying the area he flew off.

Moral of The Story

There are several things that come to mind that can be learned from the past two days. First, if my routine gets blown out of the water, don’t despair. Pick up wherever I am and keep going. So, it didn’t happen in exactly the way I like it to. Three o’clock in the afternoon is a bit early to go back to bed in order to begin again. So, I had time with God later in the day, skipped the blogging and cooked an amazing meal. Oh, and I cleaned out my closet and added to my donation pile. Still a highly successful day. I learning to roll with the flow and still be productive.

It is so easy to live inside and miss this amazing show. I grumble about the weather, but I think if I just find the right time of day to be outside, everyday has something beautiful to offer. The warm humid days will allow me to appreciate these cool breezy days all the more. And, without a doubt, my body, mind and soul will be happier for just having been a witness to the joy found in nature.

Fall = Comfort Food

So, I planned on talking about food today. In anticipation of the weather, I had some comfort foods on my menu. I will write about that tomorrow.

While the weather is so outstanding I am going to make a drive to my favorite nursery. Maybe even buy something for the front porch. The yard isn’t ready for plants yet, but I can still decorate the patio and porch with living beauty.

Enjoy the day,

Sheryl

Suburban Sunrise

There was a faint orange glow in the eastern sky when I rolled out of bed this morning. The dogs were awake and persistent. Grudgingly I let them have their way. As I stumbled to the bathroom thoughts of dread for another day rolled around in my sleepy brain. Lately I wake, not so much with a sense of dread but a sense of here I go again. Nothing to look forward to, it’s just another day. Sometimes, if I wake before the dogs and I’m feeling these feelings, I wonder, “Why don’t I wake up excited for a new day of possibilities?” “What is wrong with me?” I lay there in silence, thank God for giving me a new day yet the sense of here I go again doesn’t dissipate.

After their breakfast I let the dogs out and remembered that it is officially fall. It rarely feels like fall in September, but in the aftermath of a tropical storm, dry air moved south, bestowing southeast Texas with a delightful gift and who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth? I made my coffee, found a folding camping chair, grabbed my iPad, phone and headed outside. Beggars can’t be choosers and if I wait until my backyard vision becomes a reality…well, I might never come out to watch the sunrise. What a shame that would be, as this has been a morning to savor.

During that first cup of coffee I relished in the navy blue colored sky slowly giving way to a clear, light blue. The orange fades and pure light takes its place. The sounds of the world waking up play like a symphony orchestra warming up before the evening’s performance. Birds squeak, squawk, sing and soar through the morning sky. Sometimes they fly alone, other times like a mad rush a small flock will rise up out of the horizon only to dip and dive into this yard or that. A female blue jay lands on my fence, looking at me quizzically then zooms down into the grass, picks up a long squirming something, snake or worm, then flies off. She lands on my neighbor’s roof long enough to reposition breakfast in her beak and off she went.

I found I became a little irritated with human interference in my serene nature-filled morning. A neighbor coughs. A car starts. People talking loudly wishing each other a good morning. And now yard crews mowing, edging and doing all the things we humans do to make our homes more attractive. I felt just a bit resentful that this time alone in my little world was gone. I have to share. I don’t want to, but I have no choice.

Maybe tomorrow when I wake before dawn I will now do so with anticipation. If I get up and come outside early enough I will have the birds and the trees, sky and squirrels to myself just a little longer. Now THAT is something to look forward to.

~Sheryl

Welcome September

I know I shouldn’t go through a season just living for the next. I’m sure there are daily nuances and events that I miss by pining away for Autumn, but at the moment I can’t think of anything significant. I savor fall, winter and most of spring. And, we’re back to summer. I have always lived in a part of the country where older folks like me escape the cold and come south for the winter. They are affectionately known as snow birds. Well, I want to be a sweat bird. I want to go some place where I don’t have to sweat all day every day for months on end.

I use the first day of September as an excuse to celebrate fall. It may still be hot, but I pull out the fall colors and decor. This morning as I was hunting for my little collection of crochet and knit pumpkins, I ran across this weaving, one of my very first attempts at weaving on a small loom.

I was mesmerized by the process and possibilities. I have remained so steadfastly entrenched in the knit and crochet world since then that I didn’t listen to my soul sing as I made a picture with yarn.

I keep most all my little pieces of weaving and crochet in plastic storage bins, the flat ones that slide under the bed. I want to be able to open the container and look through all the color and texture my hands have created. Sometimes a piece will spark and idea and it comes out of storage for the metamorphosis into something new. This is an important part of my creative process. All time spent making is time well spent. The end result need not be “useful” to have value. The value lies in the creating.

I think I will honor that early effort by properly mounting this so that I can hang it up in my studio. It deserves to be seen.

I pray you take time to celebrate the day and make a little something that makes you smile.

~Sheryl