{August 29 daybook}


I love beauty and color and decorating but I also need and crave simplicity. Every so often it becomes way too cluttery and I find myself steeped in anxiety and a bit unable to breathe. And so I begin to simplify, doing away with excess, organizing, finding homes for the things that have chosen shelves or corners as their home. Late summer seems to be one of the times this happens, I think because I am mentally preparing for a season of comfort, and a beautiful, orderly place is so important to the fruition of that. 

                                  "Our lives are frittered away by detail.  Simplify, simplify." 
                                                             -Henry David Thoreau


Just as the return of autumn beckons rhythm and comfort, it also calls me back to the kitchen and menu planning. I need plans in order to accomplish most anything and cooking is one of the most necessary places for that. In summer things are a bit wispy. We buy veggies and meats to grill and things are quite simple. With days of soups, chili, homemade bread, slow cookers, and pumpkin everything around the corner, I am spending loads of time with cookbooks, clipboard, pens and plans. And I love it.


Lately we have had Mozart playing in the morning, the Swell Season, Elizabeth Mitchell and Woody Guthrie at various points throughout the day and Gillian Welch as my kitchen companion.  I love having music as a background to our days combined with deliberate times of quiet where all we hear is our voices and sounds from outside. 

We have been memorizing and meditating upon James 1:19, specifically being quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger. These three things are key to family harmony. As we focus more on listening to each other, we find ourselves slower to speak and be angry,  and much more compassionate and helpful.


I always learn so much from listening to my children narrate from their various books or seeing their drawings in main lesson books. Even when they are telling me about the same things that I have read on my own or heard from older siblings when they read the books, I always learn something new, even if it's just a new perspective. Hearing or seeing what each child takes away from something is such a beautiful, eye opening thing.

Days are moving at a slow, peaceful pace, preparing us for what lies ahead. We are welcoming peace into our lives and family, quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger.