A Bit and A Bat of Change

I don’t even know what that title means.

Just leave it alone.

Anywho. HI GUYS!

It’s been a while. Not my usual while; but a while nonetheless.

I was thinking today on my post about finishing things, and I realized that while I haven’t made much headway in completing the things on my New Year’s list (a la here), I have made headway in the finishing department.

Fortunately I kept my list somewhat vague… achievable, amiright?

I digress, the happy change I have noted, is that I am in the process of always finishing.

HUH?

See, I have a gazillion personal projects–no joke, literally a gazillion. (How many zero’s…) so prioritizing those has been a bit huge challenge. Prioritizing is not one of my strong suits.

It’s more of a leisure suit.

The important thing, is that I am beginning to finish. Instead of being able to veg endlessly, now, if I sit down for too long, I have to go grab some crocheting or knitting or stitching.

It’s actually kinda nice.

And even though my itch for beginning hasn’t decreased, (resin crafting and doll faceups and embroidery, OH MY!) I’m learning, SLOWLY, that things can wait.

And that’s hard for me.

So I guess this is a check-in and a victory and a confession all in one.

I have a new job that I am SO excited about, but I have a premonition that it will take a gobble-full of creative energy, and I want you all to know that I haven’t forgotten you. Especially if I go silent.

Is there any of you?

Maybe not.

Either way, I’m hoping to bring back some contemplative posts, and I really want to post some pictures of the fetal stages of my New Year’s projects.

I guess I should go charge my camera.

Ta-ta

Keep those heads in the clouds~

-H

oh give me to a rambling man… or just let me ramble

Well….

Year two is complete. I’m free from school for the summer–unless I decide to take Summer courses–which I really don’t want to do. I’m tired.

I’m tired of being an adult, really. I wrote that in my journal the other night… mostly because if you say it to other people, they smile knowingly as if to say, “Mmmhhmm, and it doesn’t get any better. Get over it.” I’m in a place where I have decisions to make, and I really don’t feel like making them. I’m being melodramatic though, things are good. I AM sad that I haven’t been able to write much on this blog lately. I plan on MAKING myself write something weekly, just because it’s good to empty my head.

It just seems like there’s so much stuff I want to do doing the summer (play and sing music, write, paint, craft…), but I also just want to veg. Then it’s over.

I’m feeling hopeful though, my attitude is my choice, and as always–I prefer to keep my head in the clouds :).

There will most likely be some extensive world travel in my future, and I’m just excited to get out of my routine and serve. It’s nice to finally have a goal start to become reality.

All in all, I’ve been settling and stirring up all at the same time. I love my family more than ever. Honestly, I would rather be with them than with anyone else. I want to get more of my music and writing out there. It’s the stuff I love to do. I want to simplify. I have people on my heart, and I’m trying really really hard to be faithful in the little things, because I really fail at the little things a lot.

I want to read wholesome things.
I want to make beautiful things.
I want to speak healing things.
I want to love more.

So that’s where I’m at, my little raindrops. Life is an interesting thing, but never let it pull your head from the clouds.

-HH-

Food and the Forties

I have been extremely absent lately, dear friends. It was a “write-full” semester (with a grand total of twenty-three papers), and I was struggling to find the motivation and time to write. Ryan Hood will be continued, no worries–I am just at a crossroads with the story. I am not sure whether I should try to make it historically and geographically correct, or if I should just not care. I suppose for now I could just go with it, but I hate inconsistencies in stories (though mine have plenty).
I have been very interested in my historical fashion hobby as of late, and have been perusing in some other eras. I have successfully completed an 1860’s corset and chemise–my first two sewing projects. I have dinked around with a sewing machine. But yes, my first true project was a corset. I will have pictures soon. I have it in my head that I MUST make a regency gown and a 14th century kirtle. The regency dress is a little cheaper, and will probably be made first. I’ve been drooling over some clover lawn for a while now. Either way, I have stumbled upon an era that takes less money and sewing to accomplish: the forties.


It’s not faultless, but I thought it was very forties-esque. I’m actually tempted to start dressing like this all the time. It suits me. I have a wool skirt that I wear with the blouse, but I’m searching for a good pair of shoes.

There are courageous people in every era, but the women of WWII were definitely women who understood frugality, creativity, and resourcefulness. We could stand to learn a few lessons from these people. We live in a world of wastefulness and excess. Historical costuming is frivolous, yes, but learning about the people who wore this clothing is enlightening.

Speaking of resourcefulness, I have to say that holiday food leftovers are some of my favorite leftovers EVER. The food tastes good in the first place, but it can also be combined into all sorts of tasty concoctions.

THUS, I present the holiday leftover sandwich, two ways:

HEAVY:
Two slices of fresh dense bread
Stuffing
Cranberry Sauce
Turkey

Warm up turkey and stuffing, scoop a generous amount of stuffing onto your bottom slice of bread, top with turkey. Spread cranberry sauce on other slice. Put together. Eat.

LIGHT:
Two slices a ciabatta
Cold turkey
Cucumbers
Dried cranberries
Spiced mayo

You should be able to put together a sandwich… C’mon!


Keep those heads in the clouds!

-HH

Check In

Hello all!

I have three pressing and drafts and a few new posts, but I feel that I need to “check in”.

I have a bit of  a paranoia when it comes to saying too much about myself, (I don’t need any stalkers, thank you.) But I had the urge to write life… especially since I’ve been writing so many short stories.

SO this post is called check in for numerous reasons. 1st, I’m checking in with you all (whomever you may be, I flatter myself.) 2nd, I have recently gotten home from a vacation that required much checking in.

Vacation was lovely. We took it upon ourselves to see more of the US than we have ever… and all in a vehicle. Thank heavens for “Green” by Ted Dekker, and the BBC Pride and Prejudice. Fortunately, I am of the disposition to enjoy road trips, and despite having to sleep in a bucket seat, each state we visited charmed me in its own way.

In Arizona we saw the Grand Canyon. Despite being told numerous times that it was the result of the Colorado River and millions of years, you cannot look at such splendor and mistake the hand of a Creator and enough cosmic power to result in such a chasm.

In California I finally made my way onto a surf board. I tried to convince myself that refusing to surf because I was afraid of sharks was akin to refusing to hike the Grand Canyon because I was afraid of mountain lions. (Don’t think about that too hard). The beaches were really beautiful, though. However, I enjoy seasons. As much as I enjoyed the surf shops and beach bums, I’m not a Cali girl. I’m not skinny enough anyways.

Utah was by far my favorite… though, the fact we were staying at a ski resort could have had something to do with that. Though I didn’t have my skis with me, I was able to revel in the irrational delight of being a “ski person.” We also saw Pirates: On Stranger Tides, and I enjoyed it. Haters gon’ hate.

New Mexico has strange clouds.

Mount Rushmore was inspiring. (Teddy is my favorite face). ((And chipmunk)).

The only place I found difficult to enjoy was Vegas. The roof top pool, pause-able TV, and virgin piña colada I drank were pretty much the only perks.

The thing I particularly like about long vacations, is how your home takes on a familiar newness… or new familiarity. You’ve been gone so long you look at everything with a fresh eye, but it feels so comforting to be back where you belong.

I swept my room today and I feel complete. Summer, bring it on.

P.S. I’m memorizing the book of John.

Keep your head in the clouds, love~

-HH-

 

The Lemony Writer… No, Not Lemony Snicket

I have felt very much like a lemony writer lately, almost a lime-ish writer but not quite. Because you all are probably baffled by now, and thinking I have probably lost my mind (all the cool kids are doing it), I will expound.

My ideal, and the place I am generally at in the absence of school work, is what I like to call the ripe peach writer. All I need is one good bite, and the creative juices come running out. I feel like writing, the writing comes, ahhhhh…. inspiration.

The place I have been stuck for this last semester, is the slightly more tiring lemony writer. I have to squeeze myself to get the words to come out. They’re there, mind you, they haven’t disappeared, but in the ceaseless flow of reflection paper after reflection paper and essay question after essay question, my precious ideas have bottled themselves into little capsules waiting for me to work up the stamina to wring them out. In the past two days I have read two books and written two book reports. Tomorrow the tally will be three. The collected words from the respective authors are taking the precarious seat in the front of my brain: easy to file, easy to fall, easy to never return. I suppose I should be glad that my own thoughts are taking up a more permanent residence in the lemony pockets in my brain, but… ehh, maybe I should invest in a juicer.

Fortunately, the lime-ish writing state seems safely away with the end of the spring semester drawing near. Anyone who has ever juiced a lime can guess at what I mean. I’m sure there are VERY juicy limes out there, but the type I happen to hit generally take some work before they relinquish their nectar. In fact, a firm squeeze rarely does any good. Results are won only by digging the fingertips deep into the lime and violently demanding payment. I’m not sure if my poor little noggin would survive that abuse.

No, I look forward to the day when my genius *giggles* becomes a peach again. Though I have to say that I infinitely prefer lemonade to peach juice. Perhaps the struggle makes it that much sweeter. Either way the words will come, and when they stop, I’ll pray for more.

~Noggins in the clouds people!

-HH-

When Life Hands You Lemons… Make Salad?

I’m somewhat stealing this post from my friend Chloe, but I came across the pictures today… so with full credit to her and her blogging- here, I will expound.

Last month I was visiting her and for lunch one day she made salad.

“You don’t have to eat the lemons.”

She had just thrown them into the mix of leafy greens, garbanzo beans, peppers, and carrots for color and maybe some juice, but I am the type of person who was raised to eat anything that was placed in front of me, regardless of my preference. So shrugging my mental shoulders, I stabbed a lemon with some lettuce and chewed it up.

It was good! Really good, rind and all. The lemon rind isn’t bitter like oranges are, and combined with the other vegetables and balsamic vinaigrette, the sour wasn’t overwhelming.

I thought it was interesting how life can be like that- we avoid the lemons, or try to sugar coat them, when in reality we should just try them. Who knows? You may actually end up liking them.

Try both this week; the real kind AND the kind life throws at you.

Pessimists pucker at lemons. Optimists smile and chew.

Keep those heads in the clouds~

-HH-

The Simple Things

The other day, I had a mini-epiphany. A mini-epiphany is something akin to an epiphany, but it’s not quite original enough or earth shattering enough to be considered quite the whole thing. Kind of like when you forget to register Microsoft Word, and you’re left with the reduced function version… anyway-

It was a day or two after Christmas break started, and I was enjoying being disentangled  from school. My first semester of college has been good, but I tend to be the type of person who enjoys discovering what her day brings, rather than planning every detail, then carrying it out.

So on this day, already on my mind, was the absurd satisfaction I find in having a large pile of tarped wood sit outside our house. It looks like we’re trying to hide an elephant out by our wood burner, but every time I see it, I feel a connection with every other family, past or present, that relies on an ample supply of wood to get them through the winter. My Laura Ingalls Wilder (that I don’t have to dig very far to find) surfaced with a vengeance. I almost ran upstairs and threw on my hoop skirt- yes, I do own one. However, I opted to grab some apples instead.

We have a large box of Granny Smith apples sitting out in our laundry room, and since they are probably one of my favorite baking “mediums” I started peeling…

 

I had forgotten how much I love to bake. It felt so useful. It was only apple pie and cran-apple crisp, but I felt like I had accomplished more in those two dishes than I had in my entire first semester.  I honestly believe that it is the simple things that last. The rosy red cranberries clinking into the metal bowl will be the same today, tomorrow, even fifteen years from now. It is so nice to do something you enjoy, and have it benefit others… life doesn’t always work like that, but when it does, I hide it in my heart.

In our world, we don’t appreciate the simple things. They might look silly in the eyes of the “worldly wise” or the “driven achievers” but they are the things that make life beautiful. What are some simple things in your life this season?

Keep those heads in the clouds~

-HH-

 

The Thin Places

A week or so ago, my dearest darling, Rubyring and I were talking about books and imagination and whatnot, when she accidentally spelled fantasy- “fantasie”. We laughed, and then I remarked that I rather liked that spelling better. It looked more… like a word from my imagination. It looked more like what real fantasie should be. Upon both agreeing, we wrote a definition for our new word:

Fantasie means more than Twilight or Harry Potter. (Sorry to any fans out there.)  It refers the beauty of mind and soul… the world in our subconscious, all things beautiful and imagined.  Things are only impossible when they cannot be imagined.  All possibility is contained within imagination.

Things that are in our imagination are existing in our imagination… thus, they exist! Okay, okay, I know… it’s a little heady, but conversations and readings and feelings that had been compiling for months, all began to tie in.

The ancient Christian Celts had a term for the moments when heaven and earth seemed to collide- the thin places. I instantly latched on to this concept- The thin places. The places where the breath of God blows my hair; where the greens seem greener, and the blues, bluer. How lovely. How absolutely wondrous!

Now you may be a dry old codger who is wondering, “Why does this matter? Thin places… BAH HUMBUG! And what does imagination and fantasie have to do with it anyway?!”

IT ABSOLUTELY MATTERS

We must be able to see the thin places in order to find them, but so often our eyes have become scarred over. We have blinded ourselves to the thin places. A blooming flower is merely a chemical reaction; no longer a happening of wonderment and awe. We have lost our fantasie. Don’t you see? Our fantasie is our ability to accept happenings and feelings that are outside of our realm of understanding. We lose our fantasie when we are so uncomfortable or embarrassed with it, that we explain it away.

No matter your theological persuasion or life background, to limit the scope of what our omnipresent, omnipotent God can do is a prideful, hard, and self-reliant thing to do. I believe our failing comes when we say, “God, that’s silly… I don’t like it. Perhaps you should work in a more logical manner? Maybe you would consider removing some of the wonder and mystery, and replace it with some calculated facts?”

Why do you think Jesus praised childlike faith? A child can imagine a mountain jumping into the sea, or calling the stars by their names… they might even imagine a tea party with the stars. This fantasie/faith is the same that can surrender at Jesus’ feet and submit to be carried on His back. This is a fantasie that can see the thin places. That embraces the thin places and runs to them, because HE is there.

I don’t believe that there is anything much sadder than watching a child outgrow their father’s hug. I sure don’t ever plan to. However, if we believe that spiritual “maturity” is growing too old and wise to visit the thin places; we have reduced ourselves to thinking that we are too old for our Father’s hug. What a pity that would be.

Dear friends… this is the goal of ~head in the clouds~; to promote the pursuit if the thin places, the beauty of mind and soul… the world in our subconscious, all things beautiful and imagined. Optimists and dreamers everywhere, rejoice!

Keep those heads in the clouds~

-HH-