Monday, November 23, 2009

Shalom: Complete, Perfect and Full

The Hebrew word shalom is understood around the world to mean peace, but when traced back to its root verb, it means something less definable: the feeling of being complete, perfect and full. A wise woman once told me that mothers must take the time to fill up our own cups, so that we have more to give to our children and to others. Knitting is one of those things that just fills my cup.

Since I learned to knit last year, there have been several patterns I've seen with others in mind, and each completed gift was a joy to create. But when I saw The Shalom Cardigan on the mother of all blogs, it was the first time I knew I wanted to make something for myself. So today I went to our local fancy yarn store and bought Cascade 220 worsted weight wool yarn in chocolate and maize, which I'll double up. I can't wait to get started tomorrow, when we embark on our annual Thanksgiving trip to South Georgia.

Thursday will mark the tenth time I've been a guest at my grandmother-in-law's Thanksgiving table. I could not be more blessed to be included in this holiest of southern traditions. I am thankful for the company I keep, thankful for the road that lies ahead of me, and thankful for four brand new gorgeous skeins of yarn with which to fill my cup. Shalom, and Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Letter Walk :: L

Big L and little l were in town for the weekend! We had a great time. As we embarked on a leaf collecting expedition this morning, it was unanimously decided that we'd also search for all things 'L.' I love this collection!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Makin' Mudpies in the Morning

Oh, what a beautiful morning! The weather in our neck of the woods couldn't be finer, and this morning I was privileged to witness three very happy children enjoying the sunshine, the cool breeze, and a classic activity that immediately took me back thirty years: making mudpies.

Using a beginning reading book as their guide, Big B, little b, and little e from next door worked for a solid hour, showing exceptional teamwork and creativity.I was supremely impressed with little b's ability to contribute, and with the big kids' patience and carefulness to include him.Such culinary delights!
“Mud-pies gratify one of our first and best instincts.
So long as we are dirty, we are pure.”

--Charles Dudley Warner

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sneak Peek: The Color Walk Calendar!

I'm thrilled to announce that I'm now taking pre-orders for the 2010 Snip and Snail Color Walk Calendar!

Inspired by our year of color walking, these custom-printed beauties will have inspirational quotes and ideas for kid-made fun each month of the year. Pre-ordering for the holidays is available now! There is a PayPal button on the sidebar, or you may email me for more information. The total price is $25, including shipping and tax, and a portion of all proceeds will benefit The Safe Motherhood Quilt Project. I hope you will enjoy these walks with your family as I have with mine!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Yard Sale Score: Birthday Wishes

Yesterday was my thirty-third birthday. (I'll pause while you break out in song. Thank you, that was lovely.)

Still recuperating after planning last weekend's events, I had but one request: a simple morning that allowed me to sleep in and go yard sale-ing. Papa and my sweet boys obliged, waking me up gently at NINE O'CLOCK with French Toast, coffee, and this incredible necklace Papa knows I've long coveted.

After breakfast we set out on a yard sale expedition. It was, I might add, the most beautiful day in recorded history. I would like this Christmas to be entirely secondhand, reused, recycled or handmade. This was the goal in mind for today's journey, and with a single estate sale, I got a great start. I found several vintage children's toys and books in great condition.I found a collection of 1940's photographs that I'll use in some to-be-determined creative way for my stepmother, a.k.a. The Horse Whisperer.I found a stack of books whose recipients are yet to be named, as they may be reading this post.And for myself, happy-birthday-to-me, I found a collection of vintage quilting books and patterns, and some darling fabric.
The rest of the day found us enjoying the slowness and allowing our children to crack us up. I don't know what it signifies--that I'd rather buy fabric and laugh at my kids for my birthday than get dressed up and go to a fancy restaurant--but I can live with that. In fact, I'm pretty darn pleased with myself. Here's to a great thirty-fourth year!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Breath of Fresh Air

Yesterday was the culmination of weeks and weeks of planning a very special event in our community. When so much time and energy is spent on one goal, and it is achieved, the exhale is LOUD. I was grateful for all of it, every single minute; and I was equally grateful this morning to wake up, realize what day it is, embrace the extra hour of early dark and j u s t B R E A T H E.

Somehow, the universe climatically agreed with me. This morning our neighborhood was slightly cool, slightly breezy, and just warm enough. To walk outside was to feel very fresh November air on my skin.

When we picked Big B up from school and returned to our special street, we saw each of our neighbors drawn to breathe the fresh air as well. We stayed in the street for nearly two hours, enjoying playing, breathing, being.
It almost brought me to tears to watch my boys catching lizards and knowing I didn't have to answer the phone or race inside to check my email.
I am experiencing a seemingly dichotomous gratitude for the busy-ness of achieving a high-set goal, and the still-ness of having it behind me.
"The sound of 'gentle stillness'
after all the thunder and wind have passed
will be the ultimate Word from God."

-- Jim Elliot