mommy – daughter weekend

Jayla recently enrolled in our local school. This is her first experience with school; homeschooling being her only previous experience. She was so excited about going, but after the first day she found it quite difficult to settle in. She was homesick, shy, unsure of herself, nervous. Of course she ended up getting sick with two different viruses in two weeks; so she missed quite a few days and that certainly didn’t help matters. Now into her third week of school she has attended every day so far this week (no more illness — knock on wood). She is making friends, and settling into the new routine wonderfully. I knew it would be a challenge. It has been difficult on both of us; after all we have spent 9 years together. It was time though, and we are very happy that we persevered. I am so very proud of Jayla, for all of her accomplishments thus far.

After such a challenging two weeks we really needed this little time away at one of my favourite places in the whole world — Thirteen Moons Women’s Retreat — to spend some time away from home and to reconnect with one another in this peaceful, beautiful environment.

nourishment :: hand sewing

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On Sunday I decided that I would spend the entire day engaged in a hand sewing project (without interuption). Of course I was interupted (several times), but only for a moment or two and then I could get right back into my sewing. It was so wonderfully relaxing. I felt peaceful and happy. It engaged my body, but my mind could just relax. What bliss.

My husband took care of all the meals and the clean up was just left for me to take care of the next day (at my request). This freed me up to sew all day long and into the evening. And the best part is that it inspired two of my daughters to begin sewing projects themselves.

The repetitive motion of the needle going into the fabric is a form of moving meditation for me — in, then through, and back again. You could use this as a chant as you work. And then there was the use of the body without the intellectual mind chatter. A lovely way to still the mind, without even trying. Meditation on its own has always been challenging for me. I focus so much on trying to still the mind that I am almost “trying too hard” and it doesn’t usually work well for me. But when I use repetitive motion, especially something I truly enjoy, like sewing, then it removes this obstacle for me. Now, I didn’t achieve pure nirvana, but I did experience moments of quiet, peaceful, bliss. And it is moments like these that truly nourish my spirit.

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completed autumn gnome. i purchased the kit from here.

nourishment :: creating music

As I have begun to write down what nourishes me in my journal each day, I have realized that I need to make the distinction between nourishing, stimulating and tonifying. I had never really thought of it before I began writing it down.

There really is a difference. Not that I don’t want to have stimulating and tonifying things in my life; I absolutely do, I think they are just as essential as nourishing ones. But since I am trying to bring more nourishment into my life, I need to be able to decide which belongs into what category.

For example, I watched a wonderful movie called Once this weekend. I fell in love with this movie immediately. I was about to add that to my journal, but when I really thought about it I realized that it wasn’t so much nourishing as it was stimulating.

Watching wonderful movies (I am a total movie buff), reading great books, listening to recorded music — all of these things are vital to my happiness. All are stimulating. This is a good thing. A very, very good thing. And so inspiring.

So what nourishes me?

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Well, one of the things that nourishes me is PLAYING PIANO. It is written there in my journal each day. It brings me such joy.

I have only recently begun taking piano lessons. My teacher is phenomenal. That makes all the difference in the world to me. Her teaching style allows for my love of creating the music to shine through and there is less of a focus on making sure everything is perfect. With experience I will improve my playing skills, I know that. For now what is most important is approaching the music with reverence and feeling true joy as I become the creator of music.

When I was younger I would go off to my room and sing along to my favourite records. I still enjoy doing that. I love to sing. When my children were babies I sang to them as I rocked them to sleep, and when they were young children I taught them simple little folk tunes that we could sing together. My voice was my first instrument. I was always too shy to sing in front of people and I still am self-conscious about singing in front of someone. But when I am alone I sing for the sheer joy of it. I have come to realize that it is the act of creation itself that gives me such nourishment.

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” — Aldous Huxley

creating nourishment

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The dictionary defines nourishment as “the substances necessary for growth, health, and good condition.”

Nourishment is more than just food. We can be nourished by images, events, memories, thoughts, smells, sounds, people, places, things.

I call this – nourishment of the spirit.

What nourishes your spirit?

For the next few weeks I will be exploring what is most nourishing for me and seek to bring more of that into my life. I am keeping a daily journal of these things. Once a week I will be posting about one thing that nourishes me to share with all of you.

I would like to invite you to join me and share what nourishes you in the comments.

This space nourishes my spirit. I can come here to feed my creativity and write whatever is on my mind at the moment. Sharing and connecting with others. I am inspired by so many people here in blogland. And I always hope to pass that on and inspire just one other person. I have found it to be a wonderfully supportive group of people and I feel so blessed to have discovered it. Thanks for visiting. Thank you for leaving your comments. Thank you for reading.