Calendar March got off to a bad start around here; I was ready to say See Ya Later before we’d barely said Hello. So I’ve decided My March started Wednesday, and I still get 30 days!
Thinking about … shedding some leaves and branches. Today’s meditation from the CAC (link) drew a parallel between the oak tree that “clings so fiercely” to its leaves to our own unwillingness to let go, so we can live vulnerably and authentically. The author named her “leaves of choice” as busyness and productivity, drive and efficiency, achievement and success. Honestly, I share (some of/all of?) those leaves. The author suggests that we need to look beyond merely pruning the dead stuff to “pruning open”, a technique that Japanese gardeners use with their beautiful maple trees
When a Japanese gardener “prunes open,” he or she cuts away not only dead branches and foliage, but also often a number of perfectly healthy branches that detract from the beauty inherent in the tree’s essential structure. Pruning open allows the visitor to see up, out, and beyond the trees to the sky, creating a sense of spaciousness and letting light into the garden. It also enables an individual tree to flourish by removing complicating elements, simplifying structure, and revealing its essence. The process of pruning open turns the tree inside out, so to speak, revealing the beautiful design inherent within it. . . .
As I’m looking find new ways to engage with this world, with COVID, with my neighbors, and with that empty chair, it feels like a really good time to shed some leaves … and maybe even a few healthy branches. Enabling a clearer view to the outside – and the inside – feels like a good path.
Grateful for … signs of spring. The weather this week has been glorious – sunshine and highs in the 60’s and 70’s. The daffodils are out, trees are budding and/or leafing (we saw bits of green on the cherry trees this morning!), and all the boys (young and old!) are wearing shorts. We have another cold, wet spell next week and then maybe … maybe!?! … it will be Real Spring. I actually wore a spring cardigan yesterday! and this morning I cleaned off the porch and swapped the last of my winter decor for spring (gone are the velvet pillows, mercury glass trees, and sugared fruit – now it’s cotton pillows, painted eggs, and a bird’s nest). The photo at the top of this post was me this afternoon. Knitting on the porch with an audiobook is a true happy place.
Inspired by … Lent. Like I said above, I need a new season, and one focused on spiritual growth is especially welcome. I’ve started two books, subscribed to a daily devotion, signed up for a weekly virtual class, and committed to getting back to church (in person!). I also decided to document the season in a new journal 🙂 It’s only three days in, so too soon to tell much, except that I’m still in.
Fun … I went out to lunch with Katie today and have plans (!!) to see my sister and another friend next week. My county is green on the CDC dashboard right now and I’m welcoming the invitation to gather in person again. and on a totally different note, I’m experimenting with a few different chairs … I’ll report next week on the Goldilocks Experiment.
Wishing y’all a lovely month with clear(er) views.