Friday, February 25, 2011

Deep Breath (Hedgewyck)

We had some lovely days last week  The sunny warmth woke in me a longing from Spring, made all the more fierce by this week of grey rain.  The trees look even more dull and lifeless in the gloom, though I know they are soon to burst into lacy leaves and frothy blossoms.  Only the moss appears in riotous green, at odds with everthing around it.  It is as if Nature is taking a last, deep breath before plunging into the frenzied activity of Spring.  The stillnes and gloom hide what is really happining under the surface.  Sap begins to pulse through naked tree branches, seeking roots push further into the dark earth, and seeds swell and burst beneath the brown carpet of leaves.

Our lives are much like this as well.  Often when it seems as if nothing at all is happening on the outside, great activity is taking place within.  I have trouble with the stillness, wanting to urge events forward, quicken the pace.  We have been taught so well that faster is better.  We have learned to multi-task, doing many things but focusing our full attention on none.  It is a shallow way to live.  Many things are done, but nothing is really done well.  I need to learn to accept, perhaps even enjoy, the stillness that comes during the still seasons of my life and let the growth that they nurture unfold in its own time.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bare Minimum (Hedgewyck)

What is the bare minimum one needs to be happy?  If someone had asked me that last May, I would have had a very different answer than today.  I had daydreamed about moving somewhere and living off grid, but dreaming and doing are very different things.  Reaility is seldom what one dreams.

We are five months into our adventure here.  When we arrived, we worked very hard at replicating the lifestyle we left.  Our expectations were that we would be able to live much the way we always had.  Fate had other plans for us.

Yet, chance has not been unkind.  Emergencies, such as the generator quitting, have come one at a time. We've been able to taper off our dependency on the modern lifestyle instead of going cold turkey.  We've had time to adjust.  As our lives get quieter and simpler, we're learning how much more resiliant and secure a lifestyle that isn't dependent on complicated devices can be.  We've begun designing our home to reduce the necessity for technology. 

So what do we need to be happy?  Much less that we'd imagined!