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A Monday meander

Small beauty.
Small beauty.

There is no less holiness at this time – as you are reading this – than there was on the day the Red Sea parted, or that day in the 30th year, in the 4th month, on the 5th day of the month as Ezekiel was a captive by the river Cheban, when the heavens opened and he saw visions of god. There is no whit less enlightenment under the tree at the end of your street than there was under Buddha’s bo tree. In any instant the sacred may wipe you with its finger. In any instant the bush may flare, your feet may rise, or you may see a bunch of souls in trees.

~ Annie Dillard, For the Time Being

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Posted in Beginnings, Fire, Food, Home, Photography, Quotes, Spirit

Souper Sunday

Red lentil soup
Red lentil soup

Anyone who tells a lie has not pure heart, and cannot make good soup.

~ Ludwig van Beethoven

I am not sure I am pure of heart, but I did make a good soup today.  In an effort to liven up our diet, I have challenged myself to make soup every Sunday.  I love soup, but don’t make it very often anymore.  I have loads of soup recipes, including two cookbooks devoted entirely to soup.  Both M and I save soup recipes from the newspaper or magazines if they sound good.  The saved recipes pile up in a folder, ignored.  It’s time to find out if they’re worth making and keeping.

Today I started with a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated magazine.  Have you ever read Cook’s Illustrated?  It’s one of M’s favorite magazines because they not only give you a recipe, but explain, sometimes in scientific terms, why the recipe works.  One of the recipes we saved recently is for Red Lentil Soup with North African Spices.  (I did not link to the Cook’s illustrated website because you have to join in order to see the recipe.  I found the same recipe at another site, KCET, a Los Angeles television station.)  I made it for lunch today and it was wonderful.  It is a rather simple soup to make, not too labor intensive.  I left out the mint because M doesn’t care much for mint in his savory food.  I imagine it would have changed the flavor considerably.  I’d love to try this with harissa.  Now that I think about it, I have a big bag of dried chiles in the pantry.  I think I’ll make some.

I will be keeping my Souper Sunday posts short.  Just a photo or two, a description or review and, if available, a link to the recipe.  If I can’t find a link and you’re interested in the recipe, let me know in the comments and I’ll be happy to email it to you.  Feel free to join me, if you like.  Let’s see how many soups we can make.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

Posted in Air, Beach, Dreams, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Gratitude, Home, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Portals & Pathways, Quotes, Sky, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Water, Weather, Winter, Wonder

A Wednesday walk

Off in the distance.
Off in the distance.

You never hear people put it this way, and I don’t intend to start a trend, but when we consider the ever-evolving process of a person’s thinking, the way a person imagines and organizes the world, it could almost seem appropriate to ask each other from time to time, How’s your religion coming along? How’s it going? Born again, or the same old, same old? Did you successfully distinguish darkness from light in the course of your day? Is there a fever in your mind that won’t go away? Mind if I prescribe a poem?

~ David Dark

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If we were having coffee: A family Thanksgiving edition

Looking out at winter.
Looking out at the snow.

The roast turkey carries with it, in its chubby hold, a sizable portion of our primitive and pagan luggage.

Primitive and pagan? Us? We of the laser, we of the microchip, we of the Union Theological Seminary and Time magazine? Of course. At least twice a year, do not millions upon millions of us cybernetic Christians and fax machine Jews participate in a ritual, a highly stylized ceremony that takes place around a large dead bird?

And is not this animal sacrificed, as in days of yore, to catch the attention of a divine spirit, to show gratitude for blessings bestowed, and to petition for blessings coveted?

The turkey, slain, slowly cooked over our gas or electric fires, is the central figure at our holy feast. It is the totem animal that brings our tribe together.

~ Tom Robbins, Skinny Legs and All

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A Monday meander: Random thoughts

Empty tables.
Waiting in the woods.

He Is Not Dead

I cannot say, and I will not say
That he is dead. He is just away.
With a cheery smile, and a wave of the hand,
He has wandered into an unknown land
And left us dreaming how very fair
It needs must be, since he lingers there.
And you—oh you, who the wildest yearn
For an old-time step, and the glad return,
Think of him faring on, as dear
In the love of There as the love of Here.
Think of him still as the same. I say,
He is not dead—he is just away.

~ Jame Whitcomb Riley

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Posted in Change, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Family, Garden, Gifts, Grandparenthood, Home, Life, Little Wookie, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Ohio, Photography, Portals & Pathways, Quotes, Spirit, Summer, The Bogs, Walking & Wandering, Water, Weather

A Wednesday wander

Rainy day on the ranch.
Rainy day on the ranch.

This strangely still pause between summer and autumn, greenery and gold, and the heat and rising wind that is once again readying itself to rush it all away in a climactic symphony of color and scent is — in my opinion, one of the best parts about living on earth.

~ Victoria Erikson

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Posted in Air, Critters, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Gratitude, Home, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Summer, Walking & Wandering, Wonder

A casual outing

Sampling the zinnias. (Snowberry clear wing hummingbird moth.)
Sampling the zinnias. (Snowberry clear wing hummingbird moth.)

My green thumb came only as a result of the mistakes I made while learning to see things from the plant’s point of view.

~H. Fred Dale

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