Hello, again, friends. It has been a long time! I’m so sorry for my absence here. In some ways, it feels arbitrary — I’m not sure who even reads these posts, these snippets of words and photos strung together. Blogging really can feel a bit like talking to oneself. But if you are there reading along, hello! How have you been? I’d love to hear from you.
A good many things have happened in all of our lives since April. It’s a comfort to know we share in a lot of it and we understand the strain, stresses, the collective grief we’ve carried. We’ve been walking through some personal storms also, which have taken a toll. I haven’t felt like writing, like sharing, even much like taking photos. Days have slipped one into another, taken up with the necessary tasks. Space to be quiet has felt appropriate, necessary for survival. I’ve weighed whether or not to carry on with blogging, sifting my reasons for investing time and energy into it. Maybe the season for it has come to a close, I don’t know. Sometimes you carry on with the practice of a thing even though it doesn’t seem to have a great purpose or bear measurable fruit, and it feels hard to give it room in your life simply because you enjoy it.
Weeks have slipped by into months. We’ve mostly stayed home and enjoyed the solace of escaping to the wilderness when we can. Come spring we planted a garden, maybe all a bit too early in a bit of an anxious rush to get food growing. Our spring was colder than normal and our garden took forever to take off. It’s mid-July now and just this week our zucchinis, squash, and cucumber are harvestable. I’m still waiting on tomatoes to ripen, it feels so late. Summer is my least favorite season, though I don’t despise it. I just feel more cooped up because of the heat, humidity, and bugs. I feel less able to enjoy the outdoors and I think that’s why I dislike it. Keeping a garden brings so much joy to me in part because it gives me a good reason to savor summer, to be outside and to see the benefits of all that humid heat in the swell of red tomato skin and crisp bite of cucumber. Zinnias, calendula, cosmos, coneflower, and poppies are blooming and filling up the drab beds, a quilt of color. These garden photos are from some weeks ago, now. Before long the tidy rows will be an unruly jungle.
I’ve been catching up on children’s dental and annual doctor well-checks. Noah and Phoebe did their annual academic testing (required by the state) and both did so well, I was immensely encouraged. The last months of our school year were so difficult and distracted, we were all so burned out. Yet I see their scores and I marvel at how well they are learning. It’s all worth it to see the fruits of our labor on paper, to see that the sacrifices and inevitable exhaustion (for me) involved in homeschooling still outweigh the other educational options available to us. A good break from our homeschool routine also gives much-needed perspective and refreshment, and already I can see that we’re getting hungry to return to our studies.
We’ve been keeping up with piano lessons and swimming lessons weekly. I’m beginning to plan out our next school year, while still trying to tidy and put away work from the last. I feel horrible in that area, but really when we wrap up our school year I’m ready to not look at curriculum and papers to file for quite some time. I never can believe how fast these summer weeks fly by. I’m also making some improvements to our little school room, always trying to find ways to better organize books and materials while also creating an inspiring space for learning. Knitting and reading fills my evenings, bringing calm, a creative outlet, space for my mind to grow and wander as the day winds away and fireflies flicker like embers rising from grass, cicadas singing evening songs.
I hope you are well. I hope you are savoring the summer abundance and rhythm. I hope you are your loved ones are well. I hope you are pursuing the things that are life-giving and refreshing to you amid the mundane. I hope you sense God’s presence with you, His everlasting arms underneath, upholding, undergirding it all.
p.s. I’m playing around with a new blog layout. I hope you enjoy the freshening up and can be patient with me as I continue to tweak it!)