25 September 2008

A sercy.

Have you ever heard of a sercy? Well, neither had I, until I stumbled upon the blog Purple Bottle, where a blog writer named TruPeach posted about it. She had heard about it on another blog and was paying the kindness forward by posting it to her blog readers.

A sercy (also called a "cerci") is kinda like a little, unexpected gift. Another description I found: "It might be something you really liked – like your favorite gum, candy, ice cream or some small trinket. Usually it was something that you never asked for...but was often given out of friendship."

How delightful.

On TruPeach's blog, she said she would send a "sercy" to the first 3 people who commented on her blog that day, and then those 3 people, upon receiving their sercy in the mail, would then "pay it forward" by offering a sercy on their blogs. Well, I was the first commenter!

You won't believe what TruPeach sent me in the mail...this adorable homemade garland! What a thoughtful gift from a complete stranger! I've already hung it in my office!

So, now as promised, I am doing my part by offering you a sercy...

"Pay it Forward Exchange: Here are the rules: I agree to send something fun, cute, and nice to the first 3 blog owners who post a comment on this entry. In turn, those three will post this information and pick 3 people they want to send something to and so on. Unfortunately, due to postage costs, I can only pay it forward within the United States. If you are interested in participating, be one of the first 3 blog owners to leave a comment!

You have to promise that you will then post about this on your blog, link to me, and then send something to the first three people who comment on your blog so that this continues. When I have the first three to comment I will email you a request for your shipping address and I will send out something that I hope will make you smile!"

24 September 2008

Just being.

On my lunch break today, I went out on the front porch and realized the sun was a bit cooler than usual. I sat on the top step, wrapped my arms around my knees and decided to "just be" for a little while, something I rarely do during the workday.

With only myself to blame, I have let many of my days become so fast-faced that my work hours have flown by in a state of frenzy, my lunch "breaks" spent scarfing down food at my desk and working against some imaginary clock that no one is enforcing but me. Shushing my husband when he tries to talk to me as I'm typing an email is not OK.

In addition, the stress of this overwork has started to manifest itself in my life physically, and that is also not OK. I can no longer afford not to stop...not to rest...not to slow down. What am I trying to prove anyway? What is the point of working myself so hard in the name of serving....that it hinders my ability to serve? It doesn't even make sense. I don't think it serves God for me not to take care of this body or to keep fueling a twisted pride that I am better than someone else for doing more.

As I sit here today in the early fall sun, I'm glad I stopped. And like a little reward, I'm noticing some things I would have missed otherwise...

...More and more buds on the roses and hollyhocks...

...The click-click-clicking of a cricket somewhere in the grass.

...Slowly swishing leaves high up in the trees, showing a few beginning tinges of yellow.

...Twisting vines of the morning glories that have claimed the front porch railing...

...An airplane high up in the sky, framed perfectly between the limbs of our baby oak tree (look closely)...

...My shadow in the sun...

...The gorgeous inspiration on these pages in my new Coastal Living that I just discovered in the mailbox...

I think I'll sit out here a little bit longer. Paint my toes. Finish reading my magazine. And hopefully return back inside more centered, more peaceful, more aware, more ready to live life in a way that honors God and cares for myself in a healthy way.

22 September 2008

Welcome, Autumn.

autumn in central park, 2006

Today is the Autumnal Equinox, one of two times a year when the day and night are of equal length. I'm not sure what that means, besides the fact that cool weather is coming. Yes, cool weather is coming to the land of Texas which this summer dried to a crisp. Here, Autumn, not Spring, is when we emerge from our hibernation. We get to drink morning tea+coffee not encased in an air-conditioned home, but on the back steps gazing into the yard as the squirrels scamper high in the trees. Autumn is when we get to take a walk in the middle of day without breaking a sweat. Autumn is when we dust off our firepit and start gathering stray branches to use as kindling.

There are exactly 37 days until we leave on our annual Autumn Trip to New Jersey & New York City! Oh, the memories I have there at every season, but especially this time of year...sipping a warm drink while walking up Park Avenue to Central Park. Enjoying a slow afternoon on a patio in the East Village. Layering on a jacket (and perhaps a light scarf) as evening sets in. Heading off to dinner in the coolness. This year, we'll get to take a true vacation for an entire week...no computers, no meetings, no schedule. We'll get to see our dear friends and New Yorkers The Sullivans. We might even take a drive to Connecticut and stop at roadside apple farms. I look forward to walking the leaf-carpeted sidewalks of my hometown, helping my dad bag leaves in the back yard, sitting on a bench and just staring, meditating on the change of seasons, and simultaneously, the change in me.

"Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn."
~Elizabeth Lawrence

The more I slow down my life, the more I realize we were meant to live with the rhythms of the earth. There is a reason we have seasons, and oh, how I need this Autumn to refresh me and remind me...that if not even one leaf goes untouched by God, then He can surely take care of me.