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Filtering by Tag: peace

THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

The night before I left for my conference, I was sitting on the couch with Michael and Josephine was standing on me as she does. I looked at her and said "Josephine, am I going to have to worry about you while I'm gone?" Michael pipped up and replied "Nooooo....she's going to be just fine." I did not have a direct flight to New York. The first leg was Kansas City to Milwaukee and when my plane landed there, I turned my phone on to find I had a missed call. From Animal Services. I hadn't even been away for a whole day. Josephine had dug a hole and squeezed under the fence. I quickly sent a text to Michael so he could go bail our dog out of jail.  She is now grounded and has to stay in her crate during the day while we are at work. She's handling it better than I am.

I feel like I came home to a bit of chaos. The yard is out of control. It's been too wet for Michael to mow. He's covered in poison ivy and stressing about a paper that's due today. The stress of it has lead to a cold, so he's all sneezy and congested. The house is dirty and my mom is coming in this weekend for a visit. The gutters are so full of leaves and helicopter seeds that the rain water just floods over them. The chicken coop is smelly and I came home to a letter from our homeowner's insurance telling us to repair the roof or they will drop our coverage. Most of all of this kind of makes me wish that I was sitting on a rock somewhere in Maine listening to the waves crash against all the other rocks. I am struggling to get back into routine. 

So today, I am thankful for my time away. I am thankful for sound of waves crashing on rocks and I'm even thankful for the snow that fell on us in the mountains. I am thankful for the peace. But, before I wish myself away again, I am also thankful to be home. Sure, I came home to a mess, but it's my mess. I'm thankful that Josephine OK and safe even if this means crating her during the day. I'm glad Michael had time to himself to work on school stuff, but I'm thankful to be home and in his presence. Even if he's sneezing all the time. I know the chaos will right itself eventually and that all of the things do not need to be fixed right this minute. I really thankful that all of the things do not need to be fixed right this minute.

Mom and I are going to the Farmer's Market tomorrow morning and i am buying tomato plants and basil. I am thankful for the time I will have with her, just the two of us, in the morning. That's the best time of day. Mom doesn't know yet, but she might end up holding a chicken this weekend while I clip some wings. I'm thankful that she can come this weekend for a visit, not just to buy plants and hold chickens. I am thankful for our time together. I am thankful for moments of peace before hectic times. I am thankful for blueberries. I am thankful for a snails pace. I am thankful for you.

Here's to a lovely weekend and a truly Thankful Friday!

LOVE THURSDAY

Cindy Maddera

I have been pining for a swing or hammock like sanctuary in the backyard for ages. A few weeks ago we were in IKEA buying some picture frames and bins for chicken things. We were on our way towards the checkout line when we passed a lovely hammock and hammock stand and I skidded to a halt. Michael looked at me and said "If you can look me in the eye and tell me you would hang out in that hammock today, we'll get it." It was pouring buckets outside. The backyard was a swamp. He knew I couldn't say that I would and he also knew that we couldn't really afford it. Even at IKEA prices. So I pulled out my best moody teenager and slumped my shoulders and dragged my feet as we continued on to checkout. Michael left me there pouting while he went to rescue Smaland from the Cabbage. 

On Saturday, we were in Home Depot getting things to build a fence around the garden and tomato cages. They have all the outdoor furniture right there when you walk in the door and I walked right straight over to all of it. Every thing was just too much of an expense, but then I saw some cloth hammocks on a shelf. They were only $20. I looked at Michael and asked "Do you think you could find a way to hang this between the clothes line pole and that tree in the back corner of the yard?" He replied with "Sure I can!" So we bought some rope and a couple of carabiners and on Sunday, Michael earned his knot tying merit badge. Later that day you could find me lounging in my new hammock. 

I took a magazine, a notebook and a small pillow out and stretched out with the intention of actually reading that magazine. Instead I was soon lulled into semi consciousnesses by the sound of the wind rustling the leaves and the gentle sway of the hammock. The giant oak trees where in the process of shedding their long straggling flowers. The yard is coated with them and they stick to Josephine like Velcro. Yet, it was still pretty to watch as the strands drifted down from the tall limbs of the massive trees. Nature's confetti. If I turned my head to one side, I could see the chickens pecking around in their run with Josephine lounging in the shade of their nesting box. Josephine has claimed one of two spots on this particular day. If she's not guarding the chickens from under the nesting box, she's chewing on a stick near my feet under the hammock. 

And for a moment, I don't think about getting up and folding clothes or washing the dishes from breakfast. I don't get antsy about being still for too long or that I'm being lazy and should get up and do some chore or another. I let myself surrender to the curves of the hammock. I watch the clouds swirl in the sky and I listen for noise. The only noise I hear though are the sounds of the occasionally passing car, the rustle of leaves in the breeze, the bounce of a ball as the neighborhood kids put together a basket ball game. I can hear the chickens and I can hear other birds. Mostly I listen to the stillness. After about five minutes  of being in the hammock, I am completely at peace and I think, or maybe even say out loud, "this is the best thing."

I'm getting Michael new tires for his bicycle for Father's Day. It's something we've been talking about for some time now. The other day he asked me what I wanted for Mother's Day, which I still feel odd about. I said "I got a hammock." and really, I'm good with that. Michael said that I can't retro fit a gift. Maybe I should tell him that I just want time to be in the hammock. Time can be a gift. Now I'm singing "Time in a Bottle", but changing the lyrics to "time in a hammock". It's true that there really never seems to be enough time to do the things I want to do. Time in my own little hammock sanctuary though, would probably make a really good gift. In fact it might even be the kind of gift we could all benefit from. 

Here's to time spent in your own kind of hammock on this lovely Love Thursday.

THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

This has been a serious week. I am almost tempted to just leave it at that. Heavy is a good word to describe it. I've spent many hours searching the internet for reliable, credible, statistics on race and crime and statistics versus what we see on the TV. You know me. I'm always looking for the facts and details to a story. Never take anything for face value. Question everything. Things were better last night in Ferguson. But I'm selfish. I want more than better and I want to see these events spark some major change. For now I will be grateful for first night in almost a week that the people of Ferguson had a relatively peaceful night. 

And enough with the heavy. Today is a day to be thankful. Michael had parent/teacher meetings last night. I came home to an empty house so I did something I haven't done in over a year. I peed with the bathroom door open. I also took advantage of my alone time by cleaning the house. I know exactly what some of you are thinking. Cleaning is my thing. Yes, I could have slathered my face in some crazy green deep pore cleansing mask and lounged on the couch watching Sex in the City with a box of Thin Mints. I'm out of Thin Mints, so I scrubbed the house instead. Kitchen counter tops, window ledges, baseboards were wiped clean. Tiny spiders were smashed and cobwebs removed from corners. I mopped the floors and when I dropped the bottle of Pine Sol and spilled half of it on the kitchen floor, so I mopped again. I had just put the mop away and sprawled out on the couch when Michael came home. He walked in and looked around and said "Did you mop?" like it was the craziest thing for me to do.

There is a satisfaction in clean floors. The house in general tends be straight. Clutter in is dealt with on a weekly basis, but there has been an underlying layer of dirt that I have been ignoring, or avoiding, or just too busy to deal with. I've only been able to handle the superficial. It was time to remove the hidden layer of grime. I'm not just cleaning the corners of rooms. I'm cleaning out the corners of my soul. I am thankful to be heading into this weekend with a clean house. I am thankful for how much lighter I feel from cleaning the house. 

I am thankful for the five trays of tomatoes I roasted on Sunday and the fresh corn and black-eyed peas I put up. Many of you have sent lovely cards. I am so thankful for your kind words. I received a beautiful seaside sunset from Suebob yesterday. Every time I look at it I think "I want to go to there". I may have to frame it. I also received a thank you letter from the KC AIDS Walk for my participation in this year's walk. It made me smile. And guess what? I am thankful for you.

The best of weekends to you and a light Thankful Friday. 

 

THANKFUL FRIDAYS

Cindy Maddera

Do you hear that? No? That's the sound of me breathing through both sides of my nose. Finally, after two weeks this crud seems to be breaking up and moving on out. The cough still lingers, but that seems to be the thing with coughs. I am thankful to finally be feeling well. Stars have collided in the past few months and I have not been able to get down to Norman for a yoga class. I am thankful that Saturday is free and open and that I feel well enough to attend a class. Since the weekend seems to be so obligation free, I am also thinking about making cheese. We'll see. I've been sending out my CV to various places over the last few weeks. There's no news yet on anything other then one email of "thanks but no thanks, you live to far away to consider". I remember the last time I went through the job search exercise. I would send my CV out and hear nothing. NOTHING. This time around, I've received some sort of notice stating that they are currently reviewing all the applications and they'll let you know one way or the other about the job. I am so thankful for these emails. It takes a lot of the guess work out of the process and they've been helpful in letting me know when and if I should apply elsewhere.

What else? I am thankful to be here, right now, in this moment. Have a wonderful weekend!