It’s almost April first, and looking back on the last few weeks, I am thankful that some hard lessons learned in the past few years have given me the gumption and the experience to say NO. Do you ever get caught in that place when you have four too many things all happening at once? Or a life that resembles an over-stuffed purse? To stay sane in March, I said no to blogging, and no to volunteering at lunch hour, and no to making soup for church. I said no again and again, because if I didn’t, I’d be much thinner right now and probably a terrible mix of grumpy and sick.
I think I’m through the worst of the fire, and headed back into Yes territory. My littlest son and I have fallen into a nice routine of homeschooling in the morning (long story!!!); I get a bit of work time in the early afternoon while he’s at school, and the late afternoons are dedicated to everything family–driving hither and yon, soccer, yogurt making, laundry, searching out the rabbits from under the nasturtiums–you know!
I have been able to do a bit of baking this last week. Because Teen Star ended, and my duties as Mom Chaperone ended, and, well, my daughter/singer/performer/Miss Madeleine was AMAZING?! We wondered how she would do up on a giant stage, singing her little 16-year-old heart out, and she wozzied the crowd. That girl has guts, and charm, and a mighty big voice for her little body, and she just about won the whole crazy thing! Very fun to see someone want to do something, and then succeed. We’re so proud of how hard she worked and are praying that she will use her talent wisely…
Baking! I’m headed back on track and my first moment of giving that I want to share with you was to support a young mom who’s fighting cancer. She lives kind of far away, so some special friends volunteered to take food the 45 minutes south and fill up that family’s freezer. Pans and pans of food left town, and thankfully I was able to help with the effort and send some warm sourdough along in the car. It was a small gift, but I’m thankful I was able to give alongside so many generous others.
Moment number two and three were both mass bakings for events at church. On Friday I mixed up some molasses bread and carted that off to our akathist service followed by a soup dinner, and today I rose at 5am!!! to bake two enormous loaves of bread to support our Saint Brigid’s homeless ministry. Getting my hands and heart back into giving has made me extra grateful for the gifts I have–of family, home, friends, sunshine, bunnies, time to write, children and a husband to love, words, music, and the occasional burst of quiet. Giving brings gratitude…
So March is ticking its way out as I type. Just a little under two hours until April Fools, and who knows what tomorrow will bring? I’ve got about three dozen bread recipes I’m itching to try, and a list a mile long of people I want to give something to:
The new guy who just bought the house on the corner who has chickens
My son’s amazing first grade teacher
The Montecito Library librarians
Kate, who is pregnant
Our mail carrier
I might even mail some cinnamon rolls to my son for Pascha…
…what about you–is this a Yes or a No season in your life?
Pingback: Orthodox Collective
Its a selective yes season. A baby on the way means lots of no’s for the summer. So yes to what matters right now and no to pretty much anything that will get in the way of nursing and sleeping come July.
A no we had to say was to the St.Emmelia conference, and hearing you speak was one of the things I was looking forward too. But with surprises come tax time and saving a little for the unknown expenses surrounding baby, it just couldnt happen this year. Some day . . .
I hope all goes well for you there.
A baby on the way?!!! So happy for you all.
I can’t wait for the conference! Hopefully they will invite me back and I will meet you another year, Monica. 🙂 I’m especially excited for the session with the 3’s and 4’s. We’re going to wear pj’s, eat popcorn, cuddle with our Teddy Bears and read picture books! Seriously, I’m not sleeping because I’m so looking forward to this!!!
I was just having a conversation much like this yesterday…how I need to say NO more. I really need to spend more time with my children, focus on homschooling and doing those things that are more important to me right now. I can say YES later. ♥
It’s HARD to say no. Sending you love, Marfa!
Oh, it has been a v-e-r-y l-o-n-g season of NO for me, and I am having to talk to myself more sternly to remain patient and grateful in the midst of it. 10 weeks with no weight on the ankle, no driving, and then nearly a month with a come-and-go fever that finally flattened me for more than a week. I’m tired of saying NO and pray that soon it will be my season of YES!