Monday, February 27, 2012

packing a lunch box, and other small things.

The first time I logged into pinterest, I found this brilliant pin about lunch box ideas.

And this.  Another of my favorite (and first) pinterest discoveries.  Perfectly packaged apple slices.

I know, I know.  When did I turn into such a suburban 'mom' who gets excited about lunch boxes?? 

Source: via Angela on Pinterest

Maya loves her apple slices in her lunchbox everyday.  The multi-level appeal of this treat is so impressive to's a puzzle, it's apple slices, it's a whole apple, and best of all,  the slices don't get brown.

And I immediately started packing Maya's lunches differently.  She loves all the food surprises she finds.  We were only a few weeks into the school year when her lunches were getting kind of repetitive and boring.  I'd been a little creative, I thought, but we had (more than) overdone tabouli and sunbutter sandwiches (even if they were shaped like gingerbread men).   Preparing her lunch has become something special for us both.  I write her simple little messages too, just like my Dad used to do.  At first my messages were mostly just stick people, smiles, and "i <3 U," but now that she can read just about anything, my notes are a little longer.  Communication with my daughter through written words is pretty amazing.  Every day, that twinkle in her eyes (when we share something secret and special between the two of us) seems a little older and more 'knowing'.   She is growing. Fast.  

As a mom, a wife, a teacher (really in any life-role), preparing and repairing things for people out of love has to be something joyful and purposeful and faithful (like cleaning dishes, picking up junk, sorting papers, tuning little violins, answering repeated questions, folding clothes, sorting music, sorting dirty laundry, packing lunches, making meals, ironing, etc.) ....or beautiful things like service and selflessness and gratitude and contentment morph into something ugly like martyrdom, entitlement, bitterness, self-perceived underappreciation, and boredom.  Trust me, I know.  Those little things, ways of being responsible, neat, helpful, consistent, and goal-oriented...they are big.  Each task, an important, faithful, act of love.  

  I'm not really good at this.   I'm really NOT good at this.  Instead of actually living my life and doing the small things that make it work pleasantly for myself and everyone else who lives in my house.  I long to read, to write, to learn, dream about the big things, study my French, or plan (and internet hunt for) beautiful and artistic creations....and sometimes make them, or blog about them.  

In fact, I'm avoiding some of these loving tasks (folding clothes, ironing, organizing papers, picking up junk) at the moment.  

I know I can (and usually do) get it all done in a great flourish of energy and inspiration, but I just can't seem to be consistent.  The small tasks become really big ones before I want (or am forced to) tackle them.  Sometimes I feel hopelessly incurable in this regard.  But I know I'm not.  I'm far too optomistic to accept those hopeless feelings.  I think I might need a self- intervention, though. 

So I'm pondering some resolutions, maybe even some rules for myself.  Any ideas from my more practical, responsible readers?  How do you feed the creative, philosophical, word-loving, beauty-seeking, relational, story-loving part of your soul and still manage to be a responsible human being? 

When I do "figure it all out".... I may even attempt to live by my resolutions a while before blogging about them.   That would take some discipline.  

Though....the blog therapy really works for me.  (At least I like to think it does.)

I'm off to fold laundry.  I promise.  I won't be back again until it's done.  


Fiona said...

Such a great post. I sit there at my desk at work dreaming of being a Paris femme in a cafe or looking up French apartments while the invoices need to be paid and filed and the shop website needs updating.

I'd love to know the answer too! I never want to lose my romantic living thoughts but sometimes I really need to get practical.

Ang said...

Thank you, Fiona. Kind words. And it's always lovely to find a bit of a kindred spirit.