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-

The Ballad of the Lemmings *part one*

Come, gather ’round as the sun falls asleep, to hear of a tale that the ancient oaks keep. A tale of two children born from seeds magically sowed; both small like the faerie folk in yon’ tales of old.

This story begins as the grass grows the dew, and the mists peel away leaving the sky lapis lazuli blue. Two lilies spring up, faster than norm, the petals revealing two small babes; human in form. First noticed by mother quail in the tree.

“Oh, dear me! Oh, dear me! Are those babes that I see?!”

All of her flapping and fretting drew a crowd; rabbits and chipmunks, even night animals! For she flapped and fretted so loud. The animals began clamoring and jabbering ’till their tongues turned sore. Not a thing like THIS had happened in the forest before!

The fox who was keen and as slip as a whip said, “Leave them there! It could be a trap,” and gave his whiskers a twist.

Turtle, a cautious creature, disagreed with the fox, “That’s all good for you and for me… we’re safe! My shell even locks. But those babes are in lilies grown up high to the sky. What if they were to fall… and… gulp… die!?”

“Your concern does you credit, old Turtle, my friend,” said the pert flying squirrel as he rolled from his den. “But you would have been better off had you been raised as I. Just shove the babes, let them fall, and see if they fly.”

“You are a fool silly Squirrel! Scatter brained and busy as a bee; take your opinions and *sniff* wings and go back to your tree. ”

ALL of the animals turned and looked in respect to whom spoke; for it was Owl, rudely awakened and standing stern on his oak.

“And you Fox; you are too cunning and crafty for your own good. Slink back to your pile of sticks in the wood. Turtle is closest to an answer, I guess… but we still don’t have a way out of this mess!”

“Oh Owl, yoo hoo!” A little voice called. It took Owl a second to find Ma Lemming (though she was on her hind paws). “I’ll take these two and raise them as my own.”

Owl replied, “But you already have little lemmings waiting back at your home.”

Ma Lemming nodded her head with a tear and then sighed, “But I can’t leave them homeless, just dropped from the sky.”

Owl shrugged his consent and flew the babes down. Everyone crowded to see. Rabbit said with a frown, “They have no fur Lemming, can you fix that? I don’t know how!”

Ma Lemming just smiled, “Nor did my own at the beginning; these two will be alright for now.”

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-

The Fabric of Family Continued

I have had a very specific reason for putting off this follow-up post for so long. When I wrote the original “Fabric of Family” post, I had just returned home from an engagement party for my cousin and his fiance. This past weekend was their wedding.

I have the wonderful advantage of being close to my cousin and his wife. When two families are beautifully grafted together, I can only smile despite my general inclination to become melancholy at weddings.

Just yesterday I was talking with my new cousin-in-law Ruby, (my cousin’s sister-in-law). While both of us have the discouraging and morbid tendency to look at weddings as an end, as we talked, my mind was convinced of happier things. Yes, it is an end to the way life used to be, but it is also a beginning! A beautiful beginning that can only continue on. Friendships have been forged that won’t be broken. A union was forged through love and commitment. Things have changed, but I find I can embrace the change. Oodles and oodles of new friends and family have been woven into the tapestry of my life.

It reminds me of a quote from Nicholas Nickleby. Nicholas and Smyke had just been “adopted” into a large and colorful family of actors. As they sit watching the joyful chaos below, they make the following remarks.

“We have fallen on wondrous times…”

“But a good wondrous…”

That is how I feel right now. Regardless of any other doldrum-like thought I may be dealing with, I still feel like I have fallen upon good, wondrous times. My family has grown. As I sat, eating my potatoes and mozzarella during the evening reception, I found myself zoning. Ruby insisted to know what I was thinking (being a fellow dreamer), but at the time I really couldn’t put words to it. As I reflect now, it is becoming clearer. I was in a swirl of bliss. A sensory overload of swirling colors and emotions and love.

My life is changing… I’m changing… but with the growing pains comes a newness of life that feeds my very soul.

Keep those heads in the clouds, dear friends~

-HH-

My Life With the Three Year Olds

I teach preschool Sunday school.

That says a lot in and of itself… but I’m often surprised at how much I learn and laugh when I’m around them.

Take last Sunday for example, I had almost lost hope in all mankind, including preschoolers, as I watched the kids play. Three little boys, two whom were friends, one who was playing alone. “Ah, it starts so early,” I thought in a sage-like manner. “The cliques, the outcasts, the world is poop.”

JUST as this thought was making its way through my cerebral cortex, one of the little boys who already had his playmate, walked across the room and asked the lone little boy if we wanted to come play with them. My heart just about melted.

Humans are like hobbits… you can know all there is to know about them (and be able to predict behavior) in a relatively short amount of time, yet, given the right circumstances, they always surprise you.

Speaking of poop, this same kindhearted three-year-old informed me that poop is sometimes green… how nice.

Keep your heads in the clouds~ Go hang out with a three-year-old.

-HH-

Of all the Hayley Annes in the World, You’re the Hayley Anniest…

Life is about the journey, not the destination.

I really wish I always applied this to life. It’s hard though, when you live in a destination-oriented culture. It’s all about getting to the peak, not how you get there. No longer are the days of savoring time, of appreciating each moment as it comes, not just waiting for it to pass. Destination orientation can be dangerous, how else do you develop a cut-throat society with everyone grasping for power? You lose sight of the journey.

Living the journey’s not always easy… I am a person who does not like change in my personal life. I love to re-arrange my room, or cut my hair, or do my makeup a different way, but when it comes to people growing up, people moving, people getting married, me growing up, life changing; it really messes with me. This is why I HATE crossroads. Crossroads make life seem so changeable, so… intense. Anyone will tell you, I’m opinionated and independent, but “intense” is NOT a word that describes me… most of the time. Regardless…

… Sorry, Frodo was saying good-bye to Sam, and I had to stop and cry with them…

As I was saying, crossroads make me feel all sad and negative nostalgia-y. Some are worse than others. I encountered one of theses crossroads just the other day. I was sitting outside, thinking about the end of summer, thinking about my looming –th birthday, thinking about starting college, when a thought went through my mind, “I know crossroads are an important part of life, but why does this one have to feel so ‘crossroad-ish’?” (I like to pull out the melodrama now and again).

But that’s just it! On a journey you must have crossroads. Places of beginnings and ends, not destinations. The beautiful thing is, that while a destination is static, no growth or opportunity, even the most beginniest beginning can turn into wonderful story, and even the endiest end can have a sequel. I know my journey will lead me into crazy things, or even boring things, but it will also have wonderful things. I don’t want to sit by myself, frozen at a destination, thinking I’m done with life and all that’s in it because I reached the flag. I want to travel the journey, to join the fellowship… cough cough… sorry… cough cough, to take the road of life by the horns, to take the adventure, until that one day when I will reach a destination, a destination that doesn’t end, but continues on for eternity :).

My crossroad looks a little more like a great and grand adventure now, eh? Find your adventure dear friends…

Always keep those heads in the clouds~

-HH-

The Day Practicality met Passion

E.G. the day Marilla Cuthbert met Anne Shirley.

I will try not to painstakingly pick apart every single chapter of this book (Anne of Green Gables), but this chapter was too good to pass up.

I would like to pause at this time for a disclaimer: If you happen to have a prejudice against simile, metaphors, or parallels, tough luck. It’s what I do.

Onward! The chapter is aptly named “Anne Says Her Prayers”. Marilla has already set her mind to take in this young, vibrant girl, but Anne is unaware of this fact. In true Anne fashion however, Anne is just glibly relieved that she is still at Green Gables for another night. In Marilla’s mind, Anne’s upbringing has now begun.

So begins the journey of two unlikely people learning from EACH-OTHER. Marilla is practicality to her very core, I wouldn’t be surprised to find that her small and large intestines were wound around yarn spools. Anne doesn’t know the meaning of the word apathy. She is passionate in her sadness, she is passionate in her bliss, she is passionate in her disinterestedness!
Automatically when reading this relationship scenario, I thought of the world in general, in two camps: Practicality vs. Passion. I felt however, that enough has been stated on that topic. So secondly my mind narrowed to the Christian church, similarly separated into those camps. Like two sides to a civil war, Practicality launches grenades at Passion and Passion fires missiles back. All the while the lost run around in no man’s land, trying to avoid being hit.

How clever of satan. What better way to tear apart the children of God and render them useless, than to have them squabble with each-other?

Allow me to go back to Anne and Marilla. When you read this chapter, it is easy to see that neither one of them is wholly in the right! Marilla’s faith lacks the passion of Anne’s, rendering her belief dry and hollow. Marilla’s religion is more or less the idea of her religion. Anne’s faith lacks the structure of Marilla’s, making her ineffective as a witness. She seems more enraptured at being enraptured than being captivated by the love of God.

Yes, I realize I am drawing far more spirituality from this book than was ever intended by L.M. Montgomery, but I feel that this is a needed topic! Practicality and Passion need not be enemies! They are not opposites, they are counterparts. Through the entire “Anne” series we see her and Marilla growing and learning from each-other.

Church, we need to stop henpecking within our coop and see that the real point, the only reason we are here on this earth is to spread the joyous news of Jesus, to return His children to His fold.

If we were all “correct” none of us would be.

In conclusion, I will lighten up with our dearest Anne. Humour becomes me. But please, think about this, dear friends. The world depends upon it.

Keep your head in the clouds and your hearts tender~

-HH-

“Why must people kneel down to pray? If I really wanted to pray I’ll tell you what I’d do. I’d go out into a great big field all alone or into the deep, deep woods, and I’d look up into the sky — up — up — up– into that lovely blue sky that looks as if there were no end to it’s blueness. And then I’d just feel a prayer…”

My dear friend Ruby Hopkins did a set of posts on our beloved Anne, go read ’em! Carpe Diem

Badly Done, Emma!

Ahhhhh Mr. Knightly…..

BUT! Before I get ahead of myself, allow me to explain.

Tonight I watched BBC’s newest version of “Emma”. I love ALL their productions, with Pride and Prejudice being the top of the list. However, Emma has worked its way into my heart. Any subject matter I encounter in my life that would lead to a good blog, I eagerly snap up. Emma practically handed me a topic to write about. A topic that I know impacts me, AND quite a few of my young lady friends. The topic of finding our life’s partner.

Today’s fictional world is full of the “everyday heroine”… the girl “just like us”, who finds the oh-so-perfect-in-every-way-except-for-a-few-romanticized-flaws-like-loving-to-a-fault-or-turning-into-a-where-wolf-or-vampire- hero. We, understandably snap this up! All of us want to be loved unconditionally… by a faultless yet conventional lover. Conventional because he MUST fall in love at first sight and know his heart instantly, unconditional meaning previously programmed, and flawless… yet with a sprinkling of romantic acceptable flaws that don’t interfere with their undying adoration. Why would we wish for anything else? Why are there so many disappointed young ladies?

The story of Emma and Mr. Knightly struck me as beautiful and surprising, refreshing and inspiring! Jane Austen had a soapbox for unconventional lovers, but I really do believe she struck gold with this story. I am not sure however, that the revelations I am taking from this story are what she intended.

We first perceive Emma and Mr. Knightly’s relationship as one of old camaraderie. They are not afraid to offend one another, for they know they shall soon make it up afterwords. He knows she has frivolous and mindless tendencies and she respects him as one would respect a well-loved, yet sometimes meddlesome older brother. You soon ascertain that they have known one-another for a long time. Regardless of all this, or maybe partly because of it, we find ourselves forgetting about Emma’s own love life as she does herself!

Enter Frank… oh Frank. Honestly, I found myself gravitating towards him. When we look at him, he has much about him to gravitate towards. Consider; he is open and amiable, attractive and kind, spirited yet not empty minded. The man rides a “great black steed”… Hello! It is not hard to like Frank, to root for Frank. I, who even knew the story before I had seen this movie, could not muster any dislike for his person. Here is one of many places I can understand and relate to Emma. She liked him… she liked him so much she wanted to love him. She had every reason to, no sane person would have any reason to not fall in love with Frank Churchill. This may seem silly… but it is a real dilemma. When one has no feelings to compare it with, one wonders if a strong regard or “like” is really all love is. Fortunately for Emma, doings beyond her control draw Frank away… allowing he feelings to sort out and fade.

Mr. Knightly however grows increasingly jealous and wary of what he thinks is a strong attachment between Emma and Churchill. Which, when we do take a look at the situation, is somewhat well founded… and proven when we learn that Frank is not what he seems and when Emma makes a rude comment to Miss Bates.

Knightly finds Emma alone shortly thereafter and reproaches her, “Badly done, Emma!”

I was smitten at that moment. I was struggling with feelings of wanting to cry in remorse with Emma, yet justify her, but at the same time wanting to throw my arms around Knightly. I knew as Emma knew later on, her love for Mr. Knightly.

At this point, all of you are probably once again thinking I’m insane. “This girl finds love in a strong reproaching?” But honestly, at that moment, all I have ever been waiting for in a suitor made sense. Knightly knew Emma better than she knew herself. He knew her faults, even corrected them, but then found himself loving her anyway. Not instantly, no love at first sight, but a deep mutual love that could only be grown from the time they spent learning each-other. Emma KNEW, she didn’t have to try to make it real. It’s truly unconventional, truly magical, and truly fault-filled!

I want so much a man who can say, “Badly done, Hayley!” and instead of being outraged or hurt, I can throw my arms around and feel a slight sting, remorseful, then madly in love, because I know we have built a relationship that will outlast all the happy manners in the world. I will know that no matter how “badly done”, he will continue to love me anyway. This true, unconditional love beats any pre-programmed adoration any day.

So in conclusion dear friends, be on the search for true love (the real kind) and always keep those heads in the clouds~

HH