Simple days, as ever.
Re-reading Mitten Strings for God and Simplicity Parenting.
These books just make me feel so good when I choose to forgo the many holiday activities going on, to not go overboard with the homemade gift thing, to not stay up till 3 am making an Advent calendar, to not go to the Holiday Faire, and all the many other things I Just Say No to.
Because that means there is so much left to say Yes to.
Yes to having time. Yes to being with my children, unhurried and unstressed.
Yes to walks in the snow.
Yes to letting things grow in their own way–our traditions as a young family, the beauty and meaning we find in celebrating the seasons and their festivals in the simplest ways.
Yes to creating out of inspiration and because the spirit fills us, not a sense of obligation.
Of all the things I might think up to do, it’s what I feel, the richness within, that is most meaningful.
Things take on a depth and richness when I have time to enter them more fully.
There is a space for creativity to blossom, and to be received in a way that bears fruit.
For me, Advent is a time of quiet, and of making.
Keeping the computer off at night, sitting and entering the deeply creative space of crafting gifts. It reminds me of the girls in their play–intent, absorbed, and ultimately being nourished on the soul level. Finding meaning in our work of play and life.
This is grace.
Oh, there is so much to be grateful for!
Take care, friends. Wishing you slow days and nights, quiet joy, and the peace of stillness. What are you saying no–and yes–to these days?
PS Along these lines I was recently inspired by this post on Advent from Renee, and this one on Finding Time from Heather.
8 Replies to “Finding Grace, Going Slow”
I just finished Simplicity Parenting and was so inspired. I’ve been noticing how much my kids need home-time, unstructured and unsupervised. What looked sort of cute and funny (the birthday parties they throw for their stuffed animals…legos for hours…drawing…), I now see as deeply important and nourishing to their small selves.
Thanks for this post: sending winter blessings to you down south.
I just wrote a post a few days ago along these same lines. It feels SO freeing to say no to things and only say Yes to those things that bring peace and connection. Great post!
Loved your post!
I love everything you write. I just wish you would write more…but know as a mama with babies it’s so hard and quite frankly it would make your message less real to me.
As usual, I’m saying no to so many things, each year gets simpler.
Saying yes to an adventy type activity, reinvented for our home called 12 days of Christmas. On 12 random days throughout this month leading to Christmas we’re doing a special surprise, one day it’s hot almond cocoa, tonight it’s christmas charades. that kind of thing but it’s all very flexible. Traditional activity advent calendars with something every day make me hyper ventilate. I even had the kids prepare the cards, to save me the hassle. I write in the activity on the given morning and each day we may or may not have an activity.
Anyway, it’s fun and not so set in stone like a 25 day advent calendar.
Renee, your kind words and appreciation of my writing here have always been so appreciated. As you yourself often write about–there is no way we can do it all, and some hard decisions have to be made. I loved the time when blogging was a regular part of my life, and looking into my archives I’m amazed at some of the things I find there. But for me tearing myself away from feeling bound to produce a certain amount has been a hard won battle. I have to accept the limits to what I can do, and try to keep expectations of what I do beyond my tasks as a mother and creative person rather low…
Advent calendars with activities/gifts for each day make me hyperventilate, too. What you do sounds like a fun compromise for older kids.
yes, so much truth to this piece here….thank you for that!!
In regards to your q. about ‘freeplay trumping everything’…there are def. times during our day where there are expectations, such as circle time …we all come to circle…if someone decides half way through to sit out and watch, that’s alright. If they start playing with toys or go into another room, that’s not alright….our mealtimes are the same, everyone sits for blessing, everyone waits to be excused. I won’t make the children sit and finish a craft, most certainly not the very young ones (4 and under) The older children sit well for this kind of activity on their own, in their own time, I have found. ❤ ❤ Happy Holidays to you, friend:)
I also love everything you write.
Often I feel like our society tells us that our child’s life is simply not full enough unless it is all programmed- when really those quiet times- the wintery walks, being together, and just allowing ourselves “to be” are what is most nourishing and balancing to the soul.
We did go to the holiday faire this year- and my two boys ages 7 and 4 did not like it. Too much hustle and bustle and activity for the senses, despite it being at a beautiful waldorf school. What they did love- coming home again. Lighting the candles that evening for advent.
It’s amazing how sensitive we are when that quality is protected and not hardened off. I feel I’ve become much more sensitive too after these years of slowing way down with my girls. Just going to the Farmers market or some such wipes me out! It is a sweet side effect that lighting the candles becomes even more cherished in contrast to the hustle bustle of the big world.