Saturday, May 15, 2010

Solar Cooking at Sundance

As I was struggling with my own mind (take that! and that!) about what deep, philosophical thoughts I could share with my blog community (which so far consists of one person I've told the address of this blog to, who may or may not have yet read it), I remembered that this is about "whatever comes up."

The thought bringing me awake and excited to the keys tonight? I've been beginning to reflect on my family's upcoming journey to the Sundance in July. We go to a Sundance called Little Big Medicine, by Wheatfields, AZ. This will be our third year, and the first time the kiddos and I are going to stay for the whole time of the dance, which is 4 days. Being Taurean, I am obsessed and enthralled with the physicality and logistics of things. Having grown up with little wilderness experience, and giving myself only little bits since then, I am curious and contemplative about the ongoing unknown of spending 4 days camping with my kids. What may seem simple, and is natural and ancient, still takes the mental form of a Rubik's cube to me. I am beginning to enjoy this contemplation rather than be wound up in anxiety over it, as I have before.

What comes up is finding or making a portable sun oven to cook food at Sundance! I have run across solar ovens since I've lived here in the true sunshine state of enchantment, and have eaten some damn good cornbread baked that way. As I thought about propane stoves and cooking logistics for our journey, it suddenly made perfect sense to cook instead in a sun oven.

Now to find or make one, and start some cooking with what's free, plentiful, cleansing, enlightening (literally!) and life-nourishing. I'll be celebrating another revolution around the sun this week with the sun in my heart, and in my food schemings.

Monday, May 3, 2010

spring cleaning

I am spring-cleaning, body, mind and soul. It is so comforting to say that to oneself and others. It has the tone of something comfortingly domestic, a tradition from the 1950’s with comfort food, swing skirts, and new-fangled efficiency. Of course the tradition is older than this, and that’s comforting too.

It’s nice to know that I, one woman, one mother, one soul in manifestation, am following the path of many pagans and earth-lovers before me. That in the dirt, so is the clean. We who watch the natural cycle of things, inside and outside, are in tune with being in ways that go along with what surrounds us. So outside, so inside. Big New Mexico open spaces, calm spacious peacefulness inside. New things growing and the warmth of a wind.

Deep breath and the seasons change. Out comes the scythe – whoosh-WHACK! Out go the things hanging on from last winter, and the less remembered winters past. We see these things for what they are – physical or not. They are the remnants of inertia – objects or habit patterns that are still with me, though for no reason, only because I’ve never thought, or been swift or brave enough, to do what I’m doing now. Yes, brave. It aches to let things go, and there’s an uncomfortable sitting with the unknown that goes along with that release.

And some leave not with the scythe, but with the picky monkey’s fingers, which sort through the whole pile of beans, carefully picking out those that have got to go. The little pieces – a broken toy, a tendency to say uh… these things are swiftly on their way, but must be carefully sorted out from the many small things around them – an inconspicuous plastic dinosaur that brings much joy, an ability to think before speaking.

So the baby doesn’t go with the bath water, as is said. Another fresh image in the domestic movie reel, bringing comfort to mind with refreshing Americana pictures that never were my life until I made my own life. Baby, bath water, fresh sheets flapping in the wind and sunshine. Take those things I chose to keep and let them out to play, to get some fresh air, to be revived as I am in the warming air and greater light into the night (admittedly I love daylight savings time for this reason).

What is scythed and picked from the soul?  On the simplest level, whatever feels right at that moment stays. I mean right. Not just good. Not familiar. Not warm, and god how I love warm things of the hotsprings waters, blankets, sun beating kind. Really right. To sink into the blank page of the soul in any moment, and think not “What would Jesus do?” but “What will I do right now, if I be who I am?” Who I am not in the ego sense of self, but in the true peace-making, in this moment, stream of intuition sense of self. Collective memory and wisdom, whooshing through our being with as strong a wind as the scythe, but receiving rather than eliminating.

This spring cleaning business is heavy duty. As all good cleaning, deep cleaning, needs to be. Elbow grease, attention, and a big boost of energy, whether naturally induced or helped along by a good friend, like chocolate.

In the midst of children, this spring cleaning comes in mad little moments. Frenetic as it is, satisfyingly it inches along until a critical mass is reached, and no child or other force of nature can stop those outgrown clothes from being moved into little brother’s pile of clothes to grow into. No divine being would stand in the way of the altar space being cleaned of the receipts and change of daily life, and moved to be a calm retreat for the souls of those who live here, those who used to be around, and those whose being emanates constantly. It’s a wild ride, but why stop it?

Letting go too of those tired archetypes. No, I don’t think I’ll turn into one of those pack rats whose houses are mapped by labyrinthine paths between piles of papers. The perfect hippie homeschooling domestic goddess? Not this lifetime, though it’s nice work if you can get it, sometimes. The workaholic Type-A-er? Not in this town, that’s why I moved here. The obsessive compulsive sweeper, sweeping through the house from one end to another for signs of things out of their “place”? Couldn’t care that much to pay attention and remember to do so all the time. How about the sometimes sweeper? “Always” seems so … comprehensive. Yes! The Sometimes Sweeper, an archetype I can be with. Sometimes Sweepers sometimes get hit with a spring cleaning bug, and it’s intriguing to see who and what remain after that sweep.