Peace at Home
Recently, I read an article that spoke to the power of passwords.
Over the following months, Estrella used this technique successfully in other realms of his life,
such as: Quit@smoking4ever, Save4trip@thailand, and Sleep@before12.
Believe what you want about the correlation of the changes in this man’s life and the passwords he chose, but this article resonated for me as
I will sometimes labour over passwords as if I am creating a spell to invoke luck or love or health,
as I have always secretly believed in the magical powers of language.
A few days ago I came across this quote,
‘It is not enough to just think on things. It is important to write it all down, or at least say it out loud. Writing and speaking are actions – they bring ideas into the physical world and open us to change…’ Gill Edwards
When we renovated our home 11 years ago we had these words imprinted into the cement of our planters, ‘Peace at Home.’ We also had these letter forms fixed to the archway in our dining room.
I had been inspired by a trip to Guanajuato Mexico where we visited a beautiful old villa with those same words written on a wall in the gardens, Casa de Paz.
This was all during a time where I didn’t feel particularly peaceful, nor could I have known of heartaches that were to come,
but I did know that I wanted peace. I had always known that.
Nor did I completely understand that although peace at home is an admirable and important goal, it would only remain a far off dream until I did the real work of nurturing peace in my own heart.
And that is an intimate journey that never ends,
As for our casa, there are no masters of peace or enlightenment here,
we are simply on a journey together,
hoping to continue to choose love at the end of the day,
Peace at Home is the password.
Though getting kids off their screens can sometimes feel difficult and frustrating I am still convinced that kids for the most part are masters at play.
Sometimes, though, they need a little nudge to do what comes naturally.
The other day I said to my kids and their friends,
‘Let’s make an art show at the end of the summer. We’ll take all of the pieces you create all summer long and host a show. We will pin up your art, have snacks and drinks and invite people’
Whether or not our idea actually makes it that far, the next hour was taken up by George and his friend Kelly very avidly sketching their favorite stuffies for the exhibition.
And when we came up with the idea of adding works to our painted rock garden when our friends came to stay with us this week, I set out my Zen Doodling book by Carolyn Scrace out along with all of the felts,
It didn’t take long for Olivia to produce this beauty.
With much tighter limits set on allowed gaming time,
today George and Kelly decided to list the criteria required to become a ‘Crazy Club Member.’ (inspired by their own ‘Concussion Club’ that they had formed earlier on in the week as a result of last week’s events)
Items on the their extensive list included:
‘Go on all biking hills that do not have a chance of death.’
‘See 5 or more foxes.’
‘Build a fort in the mini-forest.’
‘Dunk in the lake in your clothes.’
‘Dye your hair with Kool-aid.’
Yes! This is what I’m talking about!
Isn’t life grand when these are the kinds of things that summer asks of you?
In her wonderful book, A Year of Writing Dangerously, Barbara Abercombie writes about the ways that we sabotage ourselves as writers.
Never mind the things we commonly tell ourselves such as, ‘I have nothing original to say,’ or ‘I haven’t got the time as this stage of my life,’
writing can sometimes just feel like as if it takes way too much energy and effort in a world that already requires so much of us.
Our world, as well, is a highly addictive place and checking Facebook and emails is an easy place to default to ~
Even laundry or unloading the dishwasher can suddenly seem more appealing than finally sitting down to write.
Yet, it’s always so worth it.
Once I am engaged in my writing,
it’s cathartic, invigorating,
and deeply rewarding.
So, may writers write and may kids spend their summer days at play. May we all create time and space for the things that fill our hearts and bring joy and meaning to our days.
What could be more peaceful than that?
2 thoughts on “On ‘Peace at Home’, summer play, and writing.”
Dani Shapiro makes the same point re: writing in her book, “Still Writing.” A good one if you’ve not read it . . .
I will most definitely check it out! 🙂