Michele Minehart

words & yoga

Month: August 2009 (page 1 of 2)


so, this year marks my 10th year from the landmark of graduating high school. i’m really getting old. i didn’t make my 5th year class reunion – my cousin got married that evening, so i was there clad in red dress and all. i’m not sure i really missed out on much because i was never made aware of all the fun that was had.

for some reason i was reflecting this evening on the lack of 10th year reunion. i saw a few faces in the “folks you might know” bar on facebook. yes, fb, i know them – i’m just ignoring them. but i wondered what they were up to and if they were happy. i started wondering how i could explain why i was happy. if i showed up at a 10 year reunion, would people be able to see my enjoyment of what life has brought me?

it’s difficult to know. i don’t have a superstar career; actually, i do semi-meaningless work though my employer keeps reassuring me that it does indeed matter. i suppose it matters to some out-of-work door-to-door salesman in houston. it’s not really exciting or fulfilling, but there are times when joy bubbles over – when a coworker hustles down to tell a great story, when a friend stops by to go get beverage and dish, when a teammate compliments my work, or when i make my manager laugh (usually related to idiot resumes).

i don’t have a gorgeous home. i have a nice place that we got at a tremendous deal, wingfield-style, that has a few more things to be fixed up once jj has a bit more time. my furnishings aren’t the latest trend, which generally matches my attire. i have a jeans-n-tshirt job and live in a jeans-n-tshirt house.

so though it sounds quite mediocre, why do i love everything that God has brought into my life?

the best i can do is: i’m happy with my life because the people in it bring increadible joy. i have a wonderful, amazing husband who every day suprises me that he can continue to be so good to me (while i continue to amaze myself at how bratty i can continue to be…). i’ve got quite a charmer of a little fella that can melt my heart with a giggle.

i have outstanding, true friends. one calls to bring me a sandwich at work, with pickles because that’s what today’s urge called for. one called to invite H and i to dinner because she knew the hubby was gone all evening, every day. another is bringing me treats tomorrow at work – just because she can. we plan fun events (with themes!) simply because we love to be around each other and we look for any excuse to do so. i really believe that some people are friends because of circumstances – there is no one else to really hang out with. these gals are friends because we enjoy the person of each one of us. and we eat well. always.

i have a super family. sure, we have issues. who doesn’t? i’d venture to say that if there’s not at least one crazy one in the tree then someone’s hiding something in a closet. but i don’t know many people who choose to spend their weekends with their parents and cousins simply because they really enjoy them. but we do. my mom loves to watch my baby. my sister calls to check in. my cousins think of me when they pass by a book or start a business. any one of the 8,000 of them would help me in a pinch. i love holidays because i can look forward to a rowdy game of cards and lots and lots of laughs.

so i guess i can count myself fortunate. not just to be happy with my life, but to also know why. maybe it’s time i thank a few for making it that way.

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laying low

i have thoughts but lack the words to express them. it’s been a hod-podge of recent musings that i cannot seem to flesh out enough to warrant individual posts. so let me provide a summary and perhaps a more detailed posting will arise later.

1. i was reading 1 samuel. there is a brief passage (i’m sorry, it’s nearly 9pm and i’m not going to get off the couch to retrieve the bible to quote it. just look it up. it’s good for you.) when saul and his men go to war. however, it appears that the philistines are the only ones in the neighborhood with the skills and tools to make things sharp. no plowshears, no swords, nothing. so saul and son jonathon are the only ones with weapons. needless to say the israelites loose the battle. now there is a social and practical application in there – however i’m really slow to process it to the point of thoughtful posting. it’s been brewing for a week or so, but it’s just not there. i’m sure it has something to do with the evils of walmart.

2. health care reform seems to be everywhere. i’m going to agree with the crams here and say that there is no perfect solution (other than getting rid of greed). however, i would really like to have access to affordable coverage that will endure. someone. please. so i’m curious to see where this thing goes.

3. i heard a spectacular podcast today by rob bell on the importance of beginning at the beginning. for those who would like to hear the christian story or the jesus story retold in a refreshing light, i highly recommend that you rummage through itunes to download it from mars hill. i’ve been listening and participating in the jesus story for a while now, and i have never heard / seen such mastry of language (all 3! english, hebrew and greek!)

4. i’m currently reading the guernsey literary and potato peel society for book club. i would recommend. it’s a nice light read.

5. my food musings continue as i also read miriam’s kitchen. lesson learned: it’s hard work living kosher.

6. my food musings continue as i listened to another mars hill podcast on, you guessed it, the sacredness of food. i have a new life goal: to eat kosher for an extended period of time. dobson did a year – i’m not that strong and jj would leave me.

7. there is a posting coming soon on the inability to multitask our roles and relationships.

well, that should get a good start on it. now off to bed to read this exceptional BC book.

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you prepare a table before me (2)

i’m not sure why, but i’ve been on a recent spree of reading books involving food. there were several posts re: In Defense of Food (Pollan). Not on purpose, i’m now following up with Miriam’s Kitchen by Elizabeth Ehrlich. I began with the recommendation of one of my favorite authors, Lauren Winner, a converted-to-orthadox-Judiasm- converted-christian and she has a very enlightening take on tradition, practices and rhythms of the spiritual life. (read up: Girl Meets God)

Ehrlich opens: “Something more is calling. It is of the past, it embodies tradition, yet tradition is only the vehicle. It is of the heart, but it is more than diffuse sentiment… It is more than the preservation of an empty vessel. It is the conviction, deep and unspoken, that ritual, the vessel, contains a precious substance, though I cannot name it. My ignorance is my problem, not that of the vessel.”

Pollan exposed me to the realization that I do not eat what my mother was raised on, nor on what her mother was raised on. My son is being raised on yet another version of “food” (though i’m trying to bring it closer to 2 generations ago). I had never really thought about that. Ehrlich is taking what Pollan broke open and is smearing it all over the room. The people of her story, the women in the orthodox kitchens of generations and generations, do not have this issue. The egg salad remains the same.

So i’m inclined to ask something much more about the nature of food and eating, which several authors and one preacher has laid a few seeds: is food more than the lump sum of the calories and nutrients (be it organic or not)? Isn’t food an experience that goes beyond consumption?

we live in a very consumeristic culture. beyond food, we’re trained to consume, sometimes to the point of regurgitation. rarely are we encouraged or inclined to create. but food, especially that coming from Miriam’s Kitchen, has been carefully created, carrying with it an essence that is beyond mere caloric value. the question was posed to me this past lent: what can i consume less to create more?

i think i’m finding one answer in my kitchen. maybe it’s not just what you find in my cupboards, but how i fashion them into a meal. and then how that meal is served. and the nature of the conversation while it is being enjoyed. a few less boxes of packaged hamburger helper is a great start, but i think it’s the creation of something beautiful with the home grown tomatoes and the grass fed beef that might be what i’m craving. the ingredients… they’re a vessel holding something rich that is yet unnamed but begining to brim to the top.

may the cup overflow.

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