This is a traditional Swiss high chair that was handed down to me by an Intersteller force. Wish I could explain to you in a better way…
5 AM. birds are doing the group chanting thing and I am working here too.
I am slowly unboxing paints, brushes, scraps of paper, rulers, erasers…and lots more. I have emotional attachment to every one of these items that have made it across the Pacific and Atlantic. Some have crossed the big ocean more than three times depending on its country of origin.
This is good for me, my friends. I have missed my art belongings for so long. This process is emotional–being reunited with the ones held in hostage in two and a half years. Now they are coming back home.
I have lots of anxiety these days.
I am super tired and sleep deprived.
From every corner of my sight, cluttered desk, unpicked up toys and piles of dishes yell at me but somehow the only way to calm me down is disengaging from house related work and be unproductive.
So I just spent a few minutes coloring my wisteria–
I never really paid attention to this color group until recently when Hope started favoring it. I expected there will come a day when she will start liking pink everything but I was surprised when it was purple instead of pink.
Then I started noticing this color everywhere.
That’s what love does to you.
It changes how you see the world.
So I have been working on this Wardolf doll since December.
It was meant to be a gift for Hope for having a baby brother. The idea was that she will learn to take care of her “baby” while I am caring for our new born. Well, now our baby is not exactly a new born any more -_- Faith crawls from one end to the other end of the room and he keeps turning as I am changing his diaper. No, Hope does not make any connection between the doll and her little brother.
Instead I tried to introduce the doll to Hope as a friend. We gave her a name Aoa, which rhymes with my daughter’s name. I made Aoa a dress from Hope’s old flower patterned dress that was given to us a by a dear friend. I am already attached to this doll but it seems like it will take some time for Hope to feel that Aoa is her friend. She tried to sleep with her at night, but she couldn’t. She told be to take the doll out of her crib. One day we took out Aoa to the backyard. Hope wanted to drag Aoa on dirt as she hopped around the yard. She saw me frowning even though I was trying not to show I cared. I am not sure if I am ready to give Aoa to Loah.
In reality six-month-old Faith loves playing with the Aoa the most. He tangles the doll’s hair around his tiny fingers and pulls them hard. He drools on her. He hold her leg up and pounds it on the floor again and again. He is in command. Perhaps the doll that looks like his sister is just what he needed right now. Hmmm…
Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
And so I think it is with you; your ideas mature gradually—let them grow, let them shape themselves, without undue haste. Don’t try to force them on, as though you could be today what time (that is to say, grace and circumstances acting on your own good will) will make of you tomorrow.
Only God could say what this new spirit gradually forming within you will be. Give our Lord the benefit of believing that his hand is leading you. And accept the anxiety of feeling yourself in suspense and incomplete.
— Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Thursday is our Moonbeams and Stardust-the nature class-Day. My two and a half year old girl puts on her “activity pants” and dashes out to the car. Once a week, our shoes get dirty and our faces get sunburn. Over the past two months we are taking a toddler step to get to know the mountain of Sierra Madra. Thanks to the guidance of Hop and Jessica, who have been leading Panther Ridge Farm’s Outdoor School, I am able to fulfill one of my goals as a parent: to engender a love of nature in my children.
Unlike many other toddlers I have seen around, mine does not usually like to be outdoors. On our first day to the class, when I told her with excitement that we were finally going to the mountain she had been talking about, she started worrying about bears. Soon she was drowning in her own tears. For the next two hours she wailed, “I don’t want to go to the mountain.” I had to reassure her again and again that bears don’t come out where the people are, but no words of mine could carb her fears. Looking back at the incident now, I think she feared the unknown, since we only looked at the mountain from a far, and she knew the bear and tigers live in the mountain.
In the next two months from the first day of Moonbeams and Stardust, my daughter has learned of how mountain smells and looks like. She always wanted to be held at first, but she walked more and more as the class went on. After seeing other kids playing with bugs, she touched a worm with her finger. Even I became braver and touched a rolly polly for the first time . Vines and seedpods became her new toys. One of my favorite memory was on a day at a creek when she trudged through water in her tennis shoes, wearing a big smile.
As she familiarized herself with the environment, she also started playing with other children in the class. I was simply delighted to see her giving a rock she found to another girl. She shared her apples with other kids in the class (even though I had to bribe her with a banana at first.) The generosity of Sierra Madre was slowing seeping into a little child’s heart.
Hop and Jessica have also taught me about relating to our environment and the community as well. During the class we sometimes take a leaf off a bush or a tree to smell and collect in the nature journal. Hop said we can also say thank you to the Black Sage bush as we take a sample. He said Black Sage was considered a sacred plant to the native Americans. He also teaches parents and children about composting, which in my opinion is the most sensible way to discard food waste. I hope one day, I will be able to set up a compost system in our house as well. Jessica is inspiring with her ingenuitive recipes using herbs from her garden and homemade flours of different kinds of grains, such as buckwheat and Taff. The snack time, prepared by Jessica and Hop is the highlight of the day for me and my girl.
In two months or so we are moving to Geneva. It already makes me sad that we have to part with such nice and resourceful people we met through the outdoor school. Hopefully we will meet likeminded people with whom we can share what Swiss mountains and lakes and offer. Nonetheless we can first be the people with whom we want to befriend.