Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Snow day

I cannot help but be proud of my kiddos.  Gawd, I love them.  We had a lot of snow days but only used this last one to get in our once-a-year ski trip in.  Esme seems to really love it and perhaps it will be something we will do together.  She might shred.  Either way, it is always just rather wonderful to have this yearly yardstick to have time throw its fish right in my face and to show me that no matter how hard I squeeze, I can't hold onto my children's childhoods.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Sourdough thoughts

Its a small thing, but a long time coming.

Tonight I finally made a loaf of bread.  I have made lots of bread in the past, but this one was special.  I learned to keep a sourdough starter and take care of it, the starter came from the wonderful woman that we bought our cow from, I found a way to fit the process into my life and not vice versa, and I baked it in a wood cook stove using heat from a cherry tree that I knew.  It was extra sour and made with white flour, but it was still just right.  I even washed it down with a cold glass of milk from our new cow, Sissy.

What an amazing life.  A few years ago on this very day, I knew true despair and hopelessness.  I still remember how the snow was a beautiful new armageddon laying over the world.  I still bear scars from that time, but they don't bleed anymore.  At the time I wondered if I would ever live again and now I wonder if I ever did before.

I just turned 43 years old the other day and my youngest turned 7.  We did so in the house we built on the bank of the river we love.  I feel old in many ways.  I am tired but still driven.  My shoulder is nonexistent.  My feet can still make a soccer ball sing, but my body is no longer weightless.  I believe that something about me is both lost and found.  

I listen to the river and it speaks to me.  I still don't recognize the language but I know it speaks to me.  My family is happy and we live in a tiny house that is warm and paid for, down a driveway that is a total mess but will never fail us.  Our cell phone does not work here.  

I know that I will look on this place and time of my life as one of the very sweetest chapters of my life.

So this perfect loaf emerged to surprise me on this day to remind me that the eternal is always both here and right around the corner.  That life has always been beautiful.  And that nothing compares to the crunch of fresh bread with cold butter dripping through its core.  Past and pain exist, but a good sourdough warm right out of the oven makes impossible to do anything but savor the present.