A friend recently forwarded an email to me titled "The Invisible Mother," a short essay comparing the tireless and often thankless job of a mother to the builders of Europe's great cathedrals. Both give their whole lives for a work they will never see finished, both make sacrifices and expect no credit, and both are fueled in their passion by the faith that the eyes of God see every detail. The writer of the essay was inspired by the thought that our endless efforts in motherhood, invisible as they may seem, are worth it and can make an enriching life.
For many of us, the way we choose to hold our invisibility at bay is by creating something tangible. For me, my days often end with knitting - my love of fiber and the need to do something relaxing end up producing something I can hold and look at. Nobody will know how many times I swept under the high chair that day, or how many toys I picked up, or how many times I tried to coax a "please" or "more" or "sorry" out of my 5 year old. But a darling, handmade infant hat? That you can see.
I start new projects every day, and my 10 year old does the same. In this process of creating (and yes, often not finishing our projects!) we connect with each other and a bigger picture of ourselves in the process. My plan for this blog is to share the projects that excite me and bring some accessible proof of my existence in this invisible world of mothering!
So, this blog is dedicated to the mothers out there whose days are filled with the minutia of tasks that build our children and our families. I often tell people that I haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up. But for now, I am the builder of a great cathedral. With every shoelace tied, lunch packed, and forehead kissed, I build.
And I can hardly wait to create something new...
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Git 'er done
I wrapped 3 birthday gifts yesterday (git 'er wrapped! Oh fine, I'll stop doing that.) Rowan was invited to 3 parties in the span of a week, and I am seriously thankful for my closet gift stash! The gifts are stacked in the dining room, but our "tag and card" drawer came up seriously lacking. We've got some horsey ones that are pretty baby-ish looking, and I felt like I wanted something a bit more girly. I hate to spend money on birthday cards that get looked at for 5 seconds (if even) and then trashed, so *light bulb* (do you hear the Hallelujah chorus in the background?), I can make gift tag cards!
I grabbed my stash of scrap paper bits, a few sheets of white card stock and my cutting tools. GO!
First I cut the cardstock into 3 strips, almost 3" each. I cut each strip into 2, which gives me 6 cards per page. I folded them over, then started digging through paper. I cut my first pretty paper square to be slightly smaller than the white card, then I tried to figure out how to fancy it up. Light bulb, people! If I use skinny scraps, I can cross them over the square like ribbon on a package. (Hal-le-lu....jah!)
At first I was finding the obvious matchy papers, but then I decided to push the boundaries a little and try some different color combos. I had so much fun making the first 12, that I decided to do another 6! As I played with paper, it really started to sink in how difficult it must be for quilters to choose the fabrics for their pieces. To get that just right balance of "go together" and "contrast" it takes quite a bit of hemming and hawing. (Don't ask me what "hawing" really means either.)
So I hemmed and hawed in my clean kitchen, with bits of paper flying this way and that and constructed my oh so cutie gift tags. And yes, another light bulb! My Girl Scouts could totally do this. File that way for the future...
It's Wednesday afternoon, and we've got an hour of chaos between school pick-up and Rowan's ballet class. Wednesday means Brynn has to be in the car for a good chunk of her crankiest time of day, I have to spend an hour in the ballet lobby pulling her away from all the no-no's, nobody eats until late, and mommy usually caves and gets us McDonalds. Which is totally justified tonight (isn't it always?) because Brad is out of town until late and I'm single parenting today! And dude. I totally forgot about the laundry I started...
Tomorrow, I'll git 'er done.