Things are quite well here

:: Why does the sun rise and set? ::

We're doing quite well here. 'A' is just about done with her sickness - a good night's sleep should put her back on track. 'H' has another day or two to let it run its course. Jeff is getting better, although tonight he wondered aloud if he was getting strep throat. I am still healthy, I think. A little congestion, but nothing like the hit-by-a-truck, drop-dead-tired feeling my family members have had the past few days. I wouldn't worry about whether or not I am getting sick except that I am scheduled to pack up the girls tomorrow and head to my father's home for a few days and I am not planning to go if I'm sick. I told him I'll know in the morning if I'm coming or not.

On a more personal note, I've reached a new place in my life. Last week I read a piece in the New York Times about people who enjoy living without heat. While I wouldn't want to live without heat, I find it to be an interesting concept, especially the way one woman sums it up to say: “The main reason why I do these winter trips is that when your house is 15 degrees, the only problem you have is getting warm. Focusing on survival is right up there with a Zen retreat when it comes to clearing the mind.”

I like the idea of living so authentically that things which might normally be considered problems or issues don't even show up on the map. When I told Jeff all of this, he reminded me that we do have one aspect of our life that is right in line with that philosophy. Over the past few years our family diet has changed bit by bit and at present, we are vegan locavores. It's a choice that Jeff and I have made after much discussion and it is a conscious choice we make week after week when we shop for food, and day after day when we prepare it. It's not an accident. It's a deliberate choice. On one hand, our diet is very limited. But that limitation means that so many other things we might grapple with are not issues for us. We don't wonder all that much about the chemicals that are in our food, because for the most part, there aren't any. We don't wonder about what to cook for dinner, because we don't have that many choices. We're limited, but it's good. We're not overwhelmed. The mental static is quieted, around the issue of food anyway.

The benefits of this limitation are plentiful. Every time we sit down to eat, we know where much of our food comes from, who grew it, and who sold it to us. We know that we're not only nourishing our bodies, we're nourishing the Earth. The act of eating has gone from something we just do because we have to eat everyday to a whole new level - it's a sort of spiritual experience.

So what does this have to do with finding myself in a new place? I'm ready to open up a new part of my life to this kind of authentic living, but I don't know what it is yet. It's not something I can find out on my own. I think I'm ready to do something I've never had any interest in ever doing - explore my spiritual path a little more. I've never cared to think about spirituality and where it fits into my life, but now that I've been going to the Unitarian Universalist services regularly, I've come to understand that I can ask questions and take some time to think about my journey, and I can sort it out in a way that makes sense to me. The guiding principle of Unitarianism is that we are all on our own journey and it's up to us to take some time to reflect on it and define it for ourselves.

I've spent well over a year listening to our minister each Sunday morning and I have come to feel comfortable with the idea of allowing her to help me explore my path. Every week, she pulls together lessons from the big religions (usually Judaism, Christianity and Buddhism, but many times she speaks about Taoism, Islam, and others too). I like that she approaches it from an intellectual and historical viewpoint rather than relying blindly on emotions or faith. I'm ready to listen more deeply to her and explore her questions.

I like this place.


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About Me

My name is Jillian. I started this blog as a way to experiment with my camera and it's a become a nice little spot where I enjoy spending time. I'm a mother to 6 and 4 year old daughters, wife to a cool computer guy, and mama to a cuddly cat. We enjoy eating local, organic food; managing several food allergies; homeschooling with love; spending time in nature; and we love to take time each day to be creative. You can also find me over at From Scratch Club from time to time. Welcome!