All across the state the sunflowers are hanging their heads low in a last bow to summer and I am doing the same. The weather was terribly hot in the middle of August and the heat oppressed me. I wilted every day right along with my morning glory vine. I canceled play dates to stay in the A/C. Finally, the heat broke and I ventured outside to find that the leaves have already started changing color and the sun’s rays are slanting in a telltale way. The birds stopped visiting my sunflowers. I think they have picked them clean. Now the large sunflower heads are black and bow not in the heat but as a last salute to another season of fullness. It was a rich one overall. There were definite ups and downs, highlights and weeks I’d rather forget. I guess life is that way. Summers are so full and busy and rushed with pockets here and there of lazy afternoons and vacation days and boredom.
The book club is finished. I enjoyed reading the book and the conversations that it sparked but I recognize it as only a beginning. I am lining out ideas for a friends’ get together sometime in September. I have a lot of thoughts percolating these days: the rebellion against American culture that is true community, the importance of putting a fair bit of elbow grease into developing/sustaining friendships, the necessity of ritual in our lives and relationships, how to see the holy in the everyday. I am reading a Eugene Peterson book about what he terms “earthy spirituality” and his words are resonating. Honestly, it feels really good to be meditating on specific issues that I care about again. Living in America is no joke and I didn’t realize what a culture shock it was going to be coming back here. I feel like the last couple years I’ve just been remembering to breathe, in a way. I’m sure having two babies in that span of time has something to do with it too.
We are working away at school and trying to settle in to some kind of routine. It is proving more difficult than I had hoped. It seems like every weekend I sit down and look at our schedule and try to rework it yet again. But we are all happy and healthy and learning so much about life.