Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Desperation, Meaning, and the Iliad

I am currently reading the Iliad.  I have never read through the whole thing before, I must admit, so it is about time.  And I also have to admit that I am enjoying it. My smarter and better read friend, Cindy R., wrote this of the Iliad:

"...I love it because of its desperation- Achilles' desperation, that pre-gospel longing for significance and meaning. I suppose I love it because I have found a better country and it reminds me from whence I have come..."

I still find myself at times wondering what I will be when I grow up, wondering what my life will add up to, what of any importance I have accomplished in these few years on this little planet. I forget that I am, indeed, in a better country. What a blessed thing not to have to understand everything, but to rest in the knowledge that meaning will be had in the end.

They say the grass is always greener elsewhere, but I think sometimes the grass being brown and scorched elsewhere is a good reminder to enjoy your own piece of desert. Leave desperation for meaning behind and rest in the One who both is and makes meaning.

And while all of that is true, I have to admit that I often find myself laughing at all the wrong parts of this book. It is SUCH a "boy" book, after all.  The eyeballs falling out of heads and mingling with the dust at the victim's feet, the details about entrails and noble deaths, all remind me of the days when small warriors roamed my house and were inspired to live bold lives. And those remembrances kill off any remainder of desperation.

I am reading the Iliad with a wonderful online book group called Conversatio at the Harvey Center.  If you feel inclined to come along on a journey through the classics, fill out the information form here and ask for information about Conversatio, or take a peek at what we're up to here.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Happy birthday, Ada!

Today is the third birthday for the girl belonging to this beautiful, expressive face.  Happy birthday, Ada!  We love and miss you!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A legacy

Having not only our children and grandchildren around this Christmas season, but our parents, my siblings and extended family, the families of several of my boys' high school friends, and several former students popping by has made me very aware of the passing of the baton-- of the great blessing God has given us in a legacy.

My prayer has always been that God would be gracious to include some of this family in His remnant until He ends time.  And I have a glimpse of His fulfilling that dream as I see my sons father their children.  I am very blessed.

Thursday, January 08, 2015

Christmas Projects

I had fun working on a few little projects for Christmas, and thought I would share. First, a grove of Christmas trees. These are the ornaments I made this year, using mostly antique buttons on top.

Ezra got a whale

Carys got an elephant

I made a small wall-hanging quilt of the Minneapolis skyline for my sister Jeni.  She claims she recognized it right away!  :-)

The big girls got some play dresses for being princesses, or whatever else those fertile minds can imagine

Each of the older girls also got sleeping mats to bring to Grandma's house when they come. These are like long pillow cases, with room for four bed pillows. The pillows can lay flat or fold up for a variety of shapes.

The littles got a play mat with a wooden car made by Pampa.  Ezra'a is a race track, while Carys has a farm.  I forgot to get pictures of these, but Nikki  kindly sent this one of Ezra with his set.  The cars fit in a pocket at the bottom, and then the whole thing rolls up and ties for easy transport.

My niece Zoe loves to sew, and I made her a little sewing kit in a small zippered bag

And for Ada's upcoming birthday, I made a crayon caddy to go with a couple of coloring books she is receiving. It also rolls and ties for ease of transport.

It was such a blessing to feel well enough to complete these little, fun projects.  Now waiting in the wings: finishing a quilt for my day bed and for Emma's twin size bed, not to mention many more projects waiting to be completed or started!