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Sunday, August 17, 2014

sad funny man



(image: www.ticketmaster.com)

Like you, I have been checking out Robin Williams clips on Youtube. Watching his breadth of material, especially live, reminds us of the depth of his talent. He is a household name. And all of us wish he had had a better end.

I came across this in one of my favorite books by Josef Pieper entitled A Brief Reader on the Virtues of the Human Heart.

... a person, who in the final analysis is in despair, can appear to be a thorough-going optimist in the penultimate concerns of existence, such as the naturally cultural, to others and to himself, so long as he is able to seal off radically the innermost chamber of despair, so that no cry of pain can erupt outward ( and it speaks volumes that the contemporary man of the world has made a real art of this).


I am not smugly sitting in judgement of Robin Williams. I know he suffered more than I will ever know. Pieper's line, "no cry of pain erupt(ing)" reveals something of the physical/emotional/mental agony a despairing person feels. I am merely suggesting that this is occurring more than we realize in the people around us, perhaps even in ourselves.

Leo Tolstoy is probably my favorite author for many reasons. One of the things he highlights in his books is the living on the surface and according to very nuanced but real social rules required by the Russian upper class. This unnatural way of behaving is pitted against some very natural people who either don't know the rules or know the rules and follow them, but loathingly. Anyway, I bring this up because I see the same thing every day in the world around us. We are not dealing with a war at our doorstep or an outbreak in Ebola ( and lets all stop a moment to pray for these people!), but we are dealing with something just as deadly: the lack of a whole, unified existence.

Ok, so that is sad. What to do? Well, if you haven't read the above mentioned book, start there! I am reminded of the inner order we are created to have by reading things like this. Its not a self-help book. Rather, it is an intellectual study of how man is created within himself. And then, as a good friend put it, "spend time in prayer each day, getting to know God and yourself."

I hope you have a thoroughly happy day, my friends!




Thursday, July 24, 2014

using what i got


So, my eldest daughter suggested the name for this post. :) I love sharing this idea with her~ being creative and frugal. I don't know what it is, but I have a mini obsession with decorating, but doing it as cheaply as I can. There are just so many deals to be found!! The only things I got new are the lemon branches ( Target, <$10), the goldish butler tray table next to the couch ( about $80), and the two peacock lamp things on the table that I can't remember what you call~ ha!~ ($20 each).  





I had to add these next two pictures because I swapped things around after sitting on my couch while nursing for a good month. Something wasn't bright enough so that plant and silver framed picture got put there along with that pewter tray from my wedding. Below, I put the chair with the pillow and shaw there to fill out that space until we save for a buffet. There are just more important things on our list right now.



I think I love to decorate my home so much because its my "place." Its where I live, "work," and spend most of my time. I want it to be happy and lovely. It has to have color but also show a bit of seriousness, combining all of the aesthetics of the places I've called home: stately DC, breezy and bright Miami.

How about you?
Have a great day!

Monday, July 21, 2014

then vs now

(image: fanpop.com)


The arrival of our fourth occurred last month! In the first couple of weeks, I couldn't help but compare welcoming my first 9 years ago with welcoming our 4th most recently. And none of these has to so with them, but more with myself.

At times I wonder if I'm being the mom I want to be. Am I there for my kids emotionally? Am I teaching the necessary values and virtues? Do I show loyalty to my husband, their father, so that they know the meaning of obedience? Do I keep up with the house, providing a pleasant environment for them to call home? All of these things require a self-mastery I didn't easily recognize in myself at the outset.

Nine years ago, I had one child, and yet I had all of the challenges of experiencing motherhood for the first time; the complete sacrifice of my time, my sleep, and even my meals until a later time. In the past 9 months, people have looked at me funny but also with respect that I was soon to have my fourth. They said they could never do that. I can understand them. I remember that time of initiation into motherhood and how hard it was for me, too, simply because of a lack of experience of giving up many of my own ways and plans, something we all go through. But what I recently came to realize with the arrival of our fourth is how after all of these years, I don't mind as much  all of those little sacrifices. It does indeed get easier in some respects.

The fact that I do all of the same things this time around as I have done with each and every baby I've been so very fortunate to have, but with the ease and peace that comes with experience shows that I have made some  progress toward being the kind of mother I want to be. It isn't as hard for me in many ways which means it's become more of a habit to perform all of these little tasks of love.

None of us will be perfect except in heaven. All we can do is try to give of ourselves the best we know how. It is funny how being open to life's experiences, which for me has meant having four children, helps you on toward your goal, naturally. But that must have be God's plan all along. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

music to my ears

Hello everyone! I am taking a little break while the kids have "rest time" ;) during Spring Break. I happen to have Pandora on the Van Morrison station while catching up on some lovely, eye-catching blogs. But I'm most glad that I happened to let my ear follow Ben E King singing Stand by Me, a song we all know and love, because for a moment I heard Beauty. The melody is nice, the words are wonderful, but what I heard was a soulful voice that can inject meaning by the way a note is sung. What a gift music is to us! I hope you listen to some today that give you that glimpse of heaven!

Up next I'll show you what I've been up to around the house as far as decorating. I think I'm making some headway! Have a great day!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

stuck in a moment

Hello there:). I have friends up North suffering from too much snow and cold. They are literally stuck in their house. Yes, snow can be beautiful, but I feel their pain. I, on the other hand, have warm, sunny days that makes it always feel like Spring. But, my health is such with this pregnancy that I find myself counting down to when life can become more normal again and I can do everything I want and need to again.

Don't we all do that? When we are faced with a situation that stifles our freedom, we balk, we look ahead. I've written about this once a long time ago regarding my cancer experience because it crystallized my feelings and reactions when something greatly limited me. Now my experience is much smaller, and has a happy package growing inside:), but some of the feelings are the same; isolation, frustration, boredom.

So what do you do when you are stuck in a moment? Close your eyes and make a wish that it will end soon? Plow through as best as you can, day after day? I think not, because these are moments when we can really connect with life and the people around us because we are stopped in our tracks and knocked off of our horse, per se.

So, lets:

1. Work. Putting off little things that mount up is a big no no! Do what you can and tell yourself you've done well, even if it is far less than a "normal you" could accomplish.

2. Plan. Make a list of essentials and stick to it. Do what is on the list so you can check it off!

3. Take time to just be with others. You have to just hang out, anyway, right? Might as well make that quality time and enter into another's story and get out of your own.

4. Get creative. My husband has been insisting on my practicing piano more. When I actually follow his advice, it pays off. ;) ;)

Off and running. Hope this is something you can relate to. It's where I am at, so that's what I've got. Besides ordering new short green goblet water glasses ( we don't have a set anymore) from OneKingsLane! HAHA.

Have a great day and have a listen! Stuck in a Moment, U2



Sunday, February 16, 2014

accessories I'd spring for

Spring comes with the new fashion and I spent a few minutes seeing what is out there. I am not looking too much at clothes because I will be buying from different venues this year. ;) But, accessories are something we all can fit into! And I don't buy them unless they really say something. That's what they are for anyway, right? So I saw a few things that I think would fit in any locale - east or west, bohemian or preppy ( the town we live in now is VERY preppy).







( earrings and shoes: Ann Taylor. scarf: Banana Republic)

Many times the necklaces I love are too heavy for my neck. So the next best option is scarves!

Have a great day!