It’s April 11th and we winter weary Minnesotans are bearing up under another snow storm. Big, fat, juicy flakes of snow are obscuring visibility and making drivers a bit tetchy. In December, January or even February, I would have said that it was beautiful, everything coated in lovely, soft snow. Today, not so much. My tulip bulbs, just the tenderest of green shoots sprouting up through the soil, were making their first tentative appearances just two days ago. This snow feels like a heavy weight. When I dropped Goosie at school today, I greeted another parent whose shoulders hunched forward and whole body drooped under the burden of the weather. Originally, she is from the Portland, Oregon area and she pointed out that the daffodils would already be blooming there.
So, I’m looking for inspiration today, something to take me away from the April snow, if only for a short while. Generally, I find inspiration from all sorts of odd little nooks and crannies – one small oil painting in a corner of a gallery tucked far from the main exhibits; a song, like “Stubborn Love” by the luminous Lumineers, who sing, “Keep your heeeeead up, my love;” a note from Bear Boy whose inventive phonetic spelling makes me grin; or a story, something epic or something with heart, like the story in the Smithsonian Magazine about a family of Russian Orthodox Christians who, fleeing the Bolsheviks in 1936, hid deep in the Siberian taiga and had no other human contact until a group of scientists discovered the family in a heretofore uninhabited region nearly forty years later. Truth be told, I find stories endlessly fascinating. Good stories are like little, polished golden nuggets – the brilliance of their shine bursting with love or tenderness or grief or truth. A good story can do all that.
C.S. Lewis once wrote, “Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see.” So, by way of inspiration for similarly winter weary souls and as a means of doffing my hat to those who tell good stories, here are three recent posts from fellow bloggers I admire. Their stories speak some truth to me about my human condition. I think you might enjoy them too.
1. This first one speaks about truth and happiness. “Have You Seen This Cow” from Mom At Work by Anna Spanos
2. This next one is by writer Andrea Badgley of Butterfly Mind. In this post she writes about slowing down and letting go enough in the kitchen to let her children be a part of the process. “Learning to Let Go in the Kitchen” To be honest, I think most of her writing is fantastic, because she writes with heart and purpose and hope. Often what she is writing about on any given week mirrors where my heart or mind are at too.
3. This last one, “Miserable Little Pricks” is from Chase McFadden of Some Species Eat Their Young. I enjoy the way he tells a story with such humor and sarcasm in such a manner that the love for his family still shines through.