“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.
It matters that you don’t just give up.”
– Stephen Hawking
These days we are looking out the window a little more wistfully.
Outside it is stormy and moody and grey, so Elsie and I decided to look to the warmth and wonder of the cosmos and make tissue paper stars.
I prepared the paper and folded the points, then guided Elsie through the gluing process. It took some convincing to get her to buy in when I said the glue stick was not in fact, lipstick. She was very bummed out about this fact but forgot about it quickly when she got to hang our finished star on the window.
The warm colours are a welcome sight in our home today. I think in anticipation of Spring we will make more of these until we have a little constellation of tissue paper stars on our window.
Instructions for this craft here.
What sort of little things do you do to get through the final weeks of Winter? I am so ready for more sunshine!
Elsie and I are both Virgos and we are feeling this particular full moon a lot.
So today it was about winding down the pace as much as possible, reflecting and expressing some creative joy. We ate well, drank lots of water, napped, laughed, smudged, and made lavender playdough.
I adapted a recipe from the Imagination Tree to be suitable for winter (sadly, no fresh lavender growing in our yard right now – sigh.)
Elsie really enjoyed this activity as she’s keenly interested in all the goings on in the kitchen. Mixing is the thing to do right now.
And here it is:
2 cups flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tbsp olive oil (0r whatever you have)
2 tbsp cream of tartar
1 to 1.5 cups of boiling water (start with 1 cup then add a little at a time after that)
1/2 tsp gel food colouring
1 tsp of glycerine
1 – 2 tbsp of dried lavender buds (we got ours from Bonnieheath Estate Lavender & Winery here in beautiful Norfolk County)
Few drops of lavender essential oil
Mix the dry ingredients (I let Elsie do this step and she mastered the task beautifully). Add the oil and stir through till your flour is a bit crumbly. Add the boiling water and stir until lumps are gone and you start to have a smooth-ish lump of dough. Begin to knead in the dried lavender buds, colouring if you’re adding it, and essential oil . Keep kneading till the colour is consistent and you have a smooth ball of playdough.
Take in the aroma of lavender and pretend it’s summer.
Happy full moon in Virgo, friends❤
Taking in quieter things these days, happily
The white noise of rushing falls or wind through pines
The stunned silence of snowfall in an empty woods
The dulcet tones of my child playing happily
Imagining wilder things as she should
I looked out at the bulrush in the fields. In the winter they are like groupings of flags, but with only the slightest of movements because the air is cold and quiet and sleeping. Their stalks imbue a sense of nothingness, and yet hope because spring will come and they will be green again and frogs will croak at their feet. Birds will perch and sing upon the stems. And there will be a community there. Life.
This is outside a window of a building where my first child will be born. I am now three months pregnant and am at the Birthing Centre in Six Nations, which is a few houses down from where I grew up as a child. The midwives are calm. The energy here is calm. And outside is the same landscape where I first experienced wonder, magic, and the earth. This is where my child will first breathe, cry, and sleep in the arms of his or her parents. And it is a beautiful circle, like everything else.
As my baby and I evolve, so does the earth. The snow will melt, the bulrushes will wake, the earth will thaw, grass will sprout, and life will thrive. In the summer there will be abundance. And at the end of it all as we begin harvest for fall and as our autumn nesting begins, our child will be here.
For a couple weeks I was scared. I have been brutally ill, morose, and fearful that I will somehow be a terrible mother or that birth will be too painful and too stressful. But something has happened to me that I wanted to share — and it was inspired by hearing the heartbeat of this little person who is coming — and it is that this is completely natural and destined. The earth becomes fertile and blooms every year without fail. The earth is mother. Women mirror this process and have forever. And I am woman, I am mother, I am inherently able like the land around me.
I am going to be blogging again, regularly I hope. Some days this is all I can do because I’ve been quite ill, so I have to exile myself to my bed for days at time here and there. Blogging is such a blessing – sharing, journaling, mapping out, looking back. I need that now. The therapy and joy of writing it out.
Moody skies, snowflake obsidian warm from turning over in my hand, precious quiet only ever interrupted when Morley sighs at the rain. It is a most perfect day for the things I like – slow cooking, nesting, ignoring the clock.
Today’s very ominous weather is reminding me of a couple of poems I have written, about being a child and how much the change of seasons affected me then. I used to have nightmares about the wind alone – swooping me up, carrying me off.
I thought I’d share a couple of the poems here on my blog:
Spring thaw at Six
Spring thaw at Six
A new lake in the dip between
cousin and me
New birds that break icy quiet
The Grandfathers make proclamations
so loud and sudden that our souls rattle
Buckets, pots catch raindrops from a cracked ceiling
a matriarch sighs at a floor littered with basins
not knowing when I am older
that I will remember the water hitting tin
as a beloved symphony that rings in new life
Fields and distance
A field between us
Wild, an uninhabited no man’s land
where at night we’d run through
struck with fear at October’s darkness,
November’s silence —
The starkness of winter.
There was a boneyard there
where harvest, abundance, slow sunsets lived
In August, September —
The darkness meant lullabies
of frog, wind, leaf, goldenrod,
and we unravelled the light of each day as we slept
The footpath was a swift current
from one home to another
now bone dry from years of growing over, and apart
Seasons blend, no ceremonies border their comings and goings
Troubled by the same fear and wonder that once sustained us
Childhood is an artifact,
Now that we are older.
Parents, Six Nations Reserve, 1979.