Life is interesting!

Our woodland compost pile, functional and satisfying at the same time

Well, isn't life interesting. If your life isn't as interesting as you'd like to be, you can have some of my "interestingness." I'm happy to give it away. I want to return to a state of "boringness." How can I get there?

Yesterday afternoon I read a lot more stories to the girls than I usually do. I was having fun and so were they. Time got away from me (as it usually does) and before I knew it, it was time to leave for 'A's 4-H group. I had just enough time to chop up some vegetables and throw them into a quick soup. I threw some leeks, potatoes, herbs and a can of chopped clams into one pot, filled it with water, and put it on to boil, planning to turn it down to a low simmer while we were away. I made a quick lentil-y type soup for the girls in another pot and also turned up the heat for a few minutes.

Well, a few minutes went by and I found myself putting coats on the girls and calling out last minute things: "go to the bathroom! wash your face! get your shoes on!" Before I knew it, we were in the car. I left my cell phone at home, something I do about fifty percent of the time. The other fifty percent, I have it with me but the battery is dead. I grew up during the pre-cell phone era, and I remember the good old days when you could go an hour or two without talking on the phone. Having it with me at all times is not a priority. Besides, isn't it nice to be out of touch and elusive a few times a day? All on your own? I think so.

Halfway there, I realized that I left the stove on HIGH. I problem-solved (something I have a lot of [unnecessary] experience with) and decided that I could turn around, go home and turn it off, or I could continue on my way and look for a pay phone (ha! have you looked for one of those lately? I don't know about your town, but my town doesn't have them anymore), or ask to use someone's cell phone at the 4-H group and call a neighbor for help.

I continued on and called for help. A neighbor did go to our home and turn the burners down. But it was too late. By the time Jeff and I arrived home, the house was filled with smoke. Filled. The smoke detectors were chatty, and the two pots full of our dinner were ruined. So was the dinner, obviously.

It bothers me that I left the burners on HIGH, not because it was a dumb thing to do (which is was), but because it tells me that what I'm doing right now to simplify and reclaim our quiet, centered family "space" isn't enough. Something is missing, and I don't know what it is. I've done all I can on my own to steer our family on a solid and comforting path. I need help. And I wish I knew what kind of help I need.

I have an inkling. I've been here before. It's time to explore my spiritual path a little more. It's time to uncover a little more meaning in everyday rituals, everyday life. Time to ask more questions.

Jeff would tell you that it's time for me to stop being such a renegade home-chef and to start using a timer and actually following a recipe with intent. Hmmm. I guess some people live like that.

So, here are my questions, in no particular order:

How do people do it? Get it all done, I mean, and still be happy?

I'm starting to wonder if my personality is such that I can be either an organized, energetic, professional working woman (which I once was, in New York City, no less, and I was pretty proud of the work I did), or I can be a mom who is emotionally and mentally THERE for my children but not quite "there" when it comes to running the household and completing logical tasks. The working-woman ME probably wouldn't have forgotten about the soups. She probably would have had them prepared in advance, like, last week. And labeled.

When I finally do decide to start exploring some sense of spirituality, what will it look like? I've probably been exploring it for a while now without realizing it. I keep waiting for it to show up in syllabus format. I need a teacher, a book and a path to follow. At the same time, I don't. I've gone through things that no one would ever want to be a part of in their lifetime, and they shouldn't, and in some other ways, I am so naive and I keep myself tightly sheltered. How do I tread on that path, carrying lessons I didn't want to learn, and fearing other lessons that I probably should learn?

Why do I feel like there is something wrong with me? By "wrong" I don't mean that I don't fit in. I feel like something is really missing in my thought process. My brain's wiring. This is alarming, and is the root of all of this exploration. I've been so aware of the need to simplify, so aware of my need to hunker down during stressful times and regroup. You would think I would be able to leave the house without burning it down. Especially because my house is my home, the place where I interact with my family, the place where all of my love and energy is concentrated. I'm certainly not doing this on purpose. So what gives? Where is my energy going?

Today I read on the UUA website this reading and it struck home.

I think those are all my questions for now. I think that's enough! It's tiring to ask all of that in one day. Do I really want to know the answers?


Erika Says:

Reading Radical Homemakers really helped me form a "bridge" if that's what I can call it. I've actually been meaning to write about it. It's coming up on the 2-year point of me leaving the corporate world for the June Cleaver world and there have been a lot of tears along the way.

That book really gave me a lot of peace with everything. It's still a work in progress but it's a lot better now.

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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!