Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Celebrations (and the smaller explosions)

Spring is such an explosion of life already, and with our lives tied into the University schedule, it is also the culmination of all classes and arts events - so much to see and do!!  So here is a blurry whirlwind of what the last week or so has held for us...

Eliza had a week of triumph and excitement: she finished a year-long math program that she's been working on, she won second place and a cash prize in an Earthday contest for a bag made of recycled pants, and had her first dance concert with the hiphop class she's been loving since September. Huzzah!!

there she is in the middle!
There was such good energy on stage when her class came out; it was such a fun dance and they all enjoy themselves so much.  It was awesome.

Ani, Eliza and Esme
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It was May Day this week, of course, so down to the farm for a little Beltane celebration.

The girls might not know that May Day isn't something everyone celebrates, but we started a tradition when they were young and you know how those go...doesn't everyone take a honey bath on May Day? We picked some blossoms on our way home from the farm, tossed them in the bathwater, lit some candles, and talked about the things we most love about our bodies as we washed them down with handsful of honey: strong legs, sharp eyes, hard-working feet. Smooth skin and "I don't have a word for this feeling, mama, but I'm feeling..." "Content?" asks Eliza. "Yeah. It feels like a new year."  Ahh, lovely. Time for bed.

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One year ago Dan was working on revisions on his dissertation, his advisor was giving a talk in Sweden, and I was in Jerusalem.  He decided not to walk in the commencement ceremony.  A month ago he told me that he wanted to walk this year.  Never too late for some closure!  Commencement ceremonies are understandably long affairs, and I had some good time to think about how hard he has worked since we moved here - weathering the doubts and frustrations, the pains of a growing brain and his commitment to balancing family with school.  The best advice he received from his advisor along the way (in my opinion) was to keep family a priority.  He told him, you don't want to finish your degree and find that you no longer have a marriage.  Good man. We made it!!

I love ritual and ceremony, and I was so proud to watch my husband pass through this milestone in this public way.  It felt important, even a year later.

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Then there were the slow bits...homeschool learning coop, picnics, reading, writing, living...
Ani and Ari
Ani had another presentation for her geography class at coop.  This time it was Japan, and she rocked the sushi-making (really, this class should be called "Food Around the World" or something - it's always about the food) and threw out facts about Japan along the way. 

It's spring, so it's been raining and the river and creeks are rising higher than I've seen them before.

How high's the water, mama? Six feet high and risin'...
group haircutting project
Warrior Poet's writing class

Someone I don't know well asked me the other day how I was, and without thinking, I answered "busy".  I immediately heard how that sounded - like busy was a burden, a weight.  The busy I am feeling is so much more inspired than that right now. Yes, there are the days where we long for a "Sunday", which in our family is a euphamism for those days when one thing leads to another, which leads to a lovely hum, and we're all happily involved in whatever we're doing - but Spring is all about the small explosions, the unceasing movement and growth, and we're feeling it inside and out.


merry said...

Thanks for this glimpse into your May Day lives!! I love Spring, and your pictures have captured the joy and newness of the season. Congrats, Dan, on closing one more chapter in your life. Congrats, Eliza, for your first dance recital! Congrats, Ani, on another marvelous presentation! And congrats, daughter, for more love for her family than I've ever known in another person! I'm proud of all of you! Happy Spring!

Kerry said...

Lovely! Happy graduation to Dan, and to everybody all around for their May accomplishments. :-)