Friday, September 4, 2009

Passages

Today I let my 1st grader walk to school—with a friend, instead of with me. An older friend. A 6th grader, in fact. My son was shocked.

The walk to school is approximately 500 yards, if that. Only one residential street to cross. No big deal.

Then why did I feel that I had to stand on the front porch and watch him until he turned the corner? Deep down I knew that yet another milestone was passing. The cord was being cut—again.

I watched as he tossed his backpack over his shoulder—just like his older friend had done. I noticed the sudden change in posture, as he puffed out his chest just ever so slightly, like a proud peacock showing off to its female audience. As he walked away, he said, "Bye, mom!" in that dismissive tone that really means, "I'm fine, mom. Now go away."

I waited a few more minutes. Then, just before he turned the corner, he looked back. He had to hunch down a bit in order to see under a neighbor's tree, but then he saw me—still standing there. "Oh, no. He's going to think I'm hovering. Which, of course, I am." But no. Instead, a big smile lit up his face and he waved, as if he still needed the assurance that mom was there watching over him.

Life is good.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Quotes About Tea

Life is too short to drink a bad cup of tea.
~ Annie B.

You can never get a cup of tea large enough,
or a book long enough to suit me.
~ C. S. Lewis

May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you
and all your heart might desire.
~ An Irish Blessing

Come, let us have some tea and continue
to talk about happy things.
~ Chaim Potok

Come, oh come ye tea-thirsty restless ones—
the kettle boils, bubbles and sings, musically.
~ Rabindranath Tagore

There is no trouble so great or grave that
cannot be much diminished by a nice cup of tea.
~ Bernard-Paul Heroux

Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world.
~ Tien Yiheng

Come along inside...We'll see if tea and buns
can make the world a better place.
~ The Wind in the Willows

Come and share a pot of tea. My home is
warm and my friendship's free.
~ Emilie Barnes



Tea

Tea.

I love tea.

To me, it's an art and a ritual. The boiling of clear, fresh water. The choosing of a favorite mug. (No dainty teacups for me!) Pouring the water over an excellent blend of smooth, black tea leaves—loose or in a bag. It doesn't matter. Just make sure to pour the water OVER the tea bag. PLEASE DO NOT DUNK! For life is too short to drink a bad cup of tea.

Let it steep until it's a deep, golden amber—at least 3-4 minutes. Admire the color.

Now, with nose inside the cup, breathe in deeply and let the aroma calm your senses.

Find the comfiest chair in the house and nestle in, while holding the steaming mug in both hands. Drink deeply and savor every sip.

Ahhhhh! Pure bliss!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Remembering Dad

My father passed away quite a few years ago. He was my first "best friend" and I miss him a lot.

I remember when I was a little girl, I would rub my smooth cheek against his whiskered one and squeal that it was too scratchy. Then I would grab him around the neck, squeeze real hard and give him a big kiss on that scratchy cheek.

When something was really funny, my Dad would begin this silent chuckle that began with his blue eyes crinkling up at the corners; then his head would begin to bob like one of those toys on a spring that you get in a Happy Meal at McDonald's. The chuckle would begin making its way downward until it reached his ample belly, at which point the jiggling began in earnest. With his belly quivering, his eyes watering, and faint "tee-hees" (literally!) escaping from his lips, the chuckle would be passed around the room like some sort of wonderfully contagious "happy-disease".

I thought about this a while back and wrote a little "poem" about it. I'm not sure if "poem" is the right word for this, but you get the idea.

My Dad

Scratchy cheek
Rough kisses
Big hugs
Squeeze hard

Big belly
Shakes like Jell-O
When he laughs
He laughs a lot

Untitled Poem

I am Ephesus.
I’ve turned away.
My light is waning.

I am Sardis.
On the outside—strong and alive.
But on the inside—weak and dead.
Lots to do! Lots to do!
But doing what?

I am Laodicea.
Ugh! Lukewarm tea.
Yuck! Stale bread.
Ew! A mucky pond.

But.

That one little word. A word of hope. A tiny flicker of light.

I hear something.
Someone.
Calling to me?
Calling to me.
Calling to me!


Ephesus!
Turn around!
Look at me, my love! And find your light in my eyes.

Sardis!
Arise!
Breathe in deeply of my breath—the breath of life.
Grab hold of my hand, and let me make your deeds fruitful.

Laodicea!
Drink a cup of my pure, steaming liquid gold.
Try on my fresh, clean clothes.
And swim with your eyes opened in my crystal-clear pond.

LISTEN! Clean out your ears!

I am here, my child, my love.
Calling to you.
Tapping on the door.
May I come in?

Wake up, my love.
Don’t fall back to sleep or turn your head away.
Look at me! Arise!
Get out there and climb those hills.
Reach the summit!
Then come home to the dinner that I shall prepare for you.

“For those whom I love
I rebuke and discipline.*
I call to account—prod and correct and guide
So that they’ll live at their best.”

Text from Revelation, chapters 2 & 3 (NIV and The Message)
* Rev. 3:19 NIV
** Rev. 3:19 The Message