Happy.

What makes me happy lately:

Well, my baby of course.

She’s been very expressive lately- in a way that makes me squirm with joy when she’s smart, laugh until I almost can’t breathe when she’s silly, gets my attention when she’s angry, and so on. In some ways I feel I’m growing just as fast along side her, as her mother. My love for her explodes and envelopes me daily, and that can’t be a bad thing…
 

She decided to stick all of the alphabet/animal magnets from the fridge in her onesie. This picture doesn’t do it justice, it was a big bulge, and she was just so matter of fact about it. As if to say "Well, Mama, if you gave me a basket then I wouldn’t have to stick them all down my shirt…"

Morning mischief. It’s becoming a regular thing. Pictured here is her lovely knit soaker that her Aunt Gretchen made on top of her head and some ribbon around her neck. Remember? Hats are funny, especially when they are not really hats.
 

We like to make faces at each other in the car through this mirror I’ve got.
 

Close-up.

I’m loving all things food, too. Freshness all around me. Our chest freezer was able to be emptied into our fridge and regular freezer, signaling the start of the new season. I’m now having to be really creative with everything left over, as we’ve got to hold out until the garden and our CSA start steadily producing. Also, the meat is becoming scarcer, so I’m doing my best to incorporate it all creatively. I haven’t been posting as much about food because I haven’t been pleased with my camera, but I can’t help myself now that the summer has started.

This meal was one born out of a fridge that initially said "There’s NOTHING to eat!" It’s how my most fabulous meals begin, so I never stop there. It consists of the end of the soaked oats for the week (I soak them in a big batch at the beginning of the week and then keep it all in the fridge to use without the fuss). I mixed them with an egg, leftover chicken (the wing meat that I never really feel excited about) and onions, and fresh asparagus (which has been sneaking its way into every meal lately), and a little salt and pepper. I spooned it into a skillet with a little butter and fried them up like pancakes. I ate it with a little plain yogurt and cilantro, some leftover black bean and beet salad, and radishes.

Strawberries. I eat them late at night with a little maple syrup and raw milk in a bowl.

Fresh mint. I throw this in my tea, my water, my kombucha. I like mint. I’m excited to use it in new ways.

I feel spiritually drawn to simplicity. I mean, there’s a lot of complexity in this world. It’s unavoidable. We seem to create drama for ourselves when circumstances aren’t stormy enough… it’s an ingredient in our humanity. Our bodies and our thoughts get jumbled together and create a lot of beauty, but also a lot of pain. They go hand in hand, I think. However, the longer I’m on this planet the more joy and purpose I find in simple pursuits. Growing food, cleaning, being with my people, feeding a hungry friend, walking my dog. It’s not that I don’t aspire for greatness and knowledge- I mean, I want to feel like I’ve contributed to this world in a meaningful way and haven’t spent my life sitting around or just doing menial activities. I’m ravenous for information, often spending large portions of my days with my head in books (or more often on the internet…) and coming to drastic conclusions about the state of the world and my responsibility to help save it. However, there’s a clarity that comes with resigning myself to simple activities, almost enabling me to think more honestly and realistically about myself and my roles, stepping away from the wreckage to see where to start working.
I was thinking about this the other day because I’ve found that since I’ve been home with Vera, I’ve stopped caring about the news. I used to listen to NPR every morning, I’d read the new stories on the web before I checked my email, I was just kind of up on it. Now, though, I’m often in a situation where someone is talking about some big thing going on in the world and I’m just thinking "Whoa, I wonder how long I’ve been clueless about that…" I listen to podcasts of This American Life and I read mama and gardening blogs and blast Ani Difranco while I clean the kitchen. That’s kind of the extent of my media intake, some days. I can’t say that I miss it, though. If anything I’m more focused and less cynical. I’ve got the necessary brain space for more action towards good, rather than being in a constant state of mourning, or even worse, of pretention and self-righteousness without any real motion towards what I believe. I feel in touch with my limitations, my tendency to be overwhelmed, and my responsibility to actually DO something rather than just THINK about it all the time. 

Don’t get me wrong, I do want to know what’s going on and I want to save the world. I do. I just think that I actually slow down and become helpless the more I pay attention to things that scare, or worry, or disappoint me. I have to have faith that my small actions in my own life will create a ripple effect that I see so often illustrated from the negative end. I have to pour my energy into living a radically good life- one that truly displays what I believe. This tends to take up all of my brain space as it is, it’s a lot of work trying to comb through everything and actually change, slowly but surely.
I heard something recently about how the planet is just sort of doomed because of this huge looming natural disaster. I don’t remember what it was exactly, I just remember it freaking me out a bit (it’s a freaky thing to think about all of us freezing over or burning up or whatever…) The person who told us about it seemed confident in technology’s ability to conquer it and preserve us, although it was a really scary thing for me to think about. I remember saying something like "What do we do?" I felt so helpless about it, and I am. And later it occured to me. It’s like all of life. Some day, the worst will happen. I’ll die, maybe late in life of old age, but maybe from hot molten lava… I mean, who knows. I’m not going to let that stop me from living day to day, though. And contrary to what some people say, it doesn’t mean I should do whatever I want because it won’t matter. I always will believe that it matters. I’m rambling. Done for now.

Quote of the day:
"We have too many high sounding words, and too few actions to correspond with them." -Abigail Adams

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