agnestirrito

"Whatever you think you can do, or believe you can do, begin it, because action has magic, grace, and power in it." Goethe


1 Comment

Sunday’s Song: Sadness/ Starting Lent, 2018

Lent this year is already so different than last year. In the back of my mind, I thought I might return to this blog and record some little thoughts, a few reflections…but then Parkland happened.

My mind keeps returning to the thought of the students and teachers at that high school in Florida. The stories they won’t get to tell. The deep scars their loved ones will carry forever. How some of us get to live and tell lots of things. And why that is I do not know.

To know these lives were taken on Ash Wednesday reinforces my belief that there is a level of evil in this world that some refuse to see. We are in spiritual warfare.

I think about the victims and survivors and I wonder what they thought about at the beginning of February 14, 2018. Valentine’s Day. Maybe someone was going to get surprise flowers. A handmade card. Some chocolate. Maybe a dinner was planned, or perhaps an Ash Wednesday service was on the agenda. Maybe someone had started making some plans to have a holier Lent. You know, give up a favorite food. Try to stop cursing so much. Be nice to somebody that irritates you. Pray more.

Then, in a few mind numbing violent and horrific seconds, every plan disintegrated.

My little Lenten lists and plans pale in comparison to the walk of the Parkland survivors. I do not have words of comfort or wisdom for you, dear readers.

I do not want to forget. I do not want to be complacent. I do not want to be politically correct. I do not want children being killed by children. I do not want gun owners to tell me about their rights. I do not want non- gun owners to tell me we have to ban all guns. I do not want to hear Republican vs Democrat.

I want people to look up from their phones. I want people to speak to one another in civil tones. I want people to make eye contact. I want people to receive mental health care when they need it. Quality care. I want gun-buyers to have background checks. I want gun-owners to be responsible and teach their children how to use firearms safely.

I want people to admit we have a problem.

I want people who have differing opinions to respect one another. I want people who are silent to speak. I want teachers to be safe in their classrooms. And children. I want people to stop thinking it’s normal to see police on school campuses or to want that. I want people who died to not be dead. I want too much.

Advertisements


3 Comments

Friday’s Five: December’s Gifts

…tiny gummed stars … they say old ways, old days, old sweet touches to tags and envelopes…

…sequins…I have not sewn a sequin onto anything in years, but I’m feeling that may change in the coming year. Felt and threads and little beads and sparkling sequins on something special…

…a mom and daughter were in a flea market today and they had chosen a beautiful yo-yo quilt. It was obvious they loved hand sewn things, too…little circles of fabric gathered and stitched together…a gift to be passed down through the years…

…background music…we have our own designated playlists this month…what carols and contemporary songs are “must listen-tos” for you?…

…pine and cedar and red berries and Christmas cactus and red bows on wreaths and lights on everything…

I am losing track of days…days that come and go so quickly…does any month go faster than this one? December.


1 Comment

Friday’s Five

Sara is home for the holidays. It’s been a year since I’ve seen her…too long.

She’s asleep, catching up on hours lost from international travel. We draped blue lights on one wall of our hotel room and it is like having her dad here with us. Blue ones were his favorite.

My heart is full of thankfulness for ticketing agencies, pilots, clear skies, safe travel. Loved ones home. Presence, people. ❤️ Merry Christmas.


1 Comment

Friday’s Five: December

Today I left the house wearing a Santa hat. Last minute decision, but it is December and it was a bone chilling 27 degrees.

I think it changed my interactions with people because after all… red velvet with huge white pompom is a distraction.

I was able to continue a gift giving tradition Sam started years ago. Today wasn’t the day I planned to do it, but the opportunity came and I was quite happy knowing this took place with me wearing Santa gear. People were inconvenienced for a moment because this impromptu event took place on a country road and cars were delayed momentarily, but not one person honked. And the recipient…delighted. Hat, perhaps??

Onward to a rosary group. Lots of prayers said for lots of people with women who are deeply different but connected in prayer. While there, cardinals kept coming to the feeder. Brilliant reds.

Then, a low tire pressure stop at a garage. The attendant wished me Merry Christmas as I left…I am positive it was the hat. Positive. Makes people feel happier. Joyful. Merry. Isn’t that a great word?

The lights of the season are everywhere. Store windows, interstate tree groupings, hotel reception areas. So welcoming.

The little things that invite us to be better versions of ourselves. December, you delight.


1 Comment

Friday’s Five

4:30am. Still dark out. Wide awake after five hours of good sleep. Sometimes we need more, sometimes less. Happy to awaken early on this Black Friday. Lots to do. On the list:

Put all the random buttons I find today in a glass jar I saved. When will I use said buttons? Maybe this will be the year. All sorts of random things reside here with me: bits of paper, keys to long abandoned locks…maybe they will find their rightful places today.

Take a 30-gallon trash bag to the end of the driveway and fill it up with all the litter people insist on discarding: ice bags, beer cans, cigarette packaging, plastic bottles…

…there is a danger for that to sour my spirit, so while I’m out there, I will hang wreaths at the edge of the drive. Collect nandinas and holly. Cut pine and cedar and arrange a bucket or two of fresh cuttings to welcome this most beautiful time of year. Do you hear it? The whisper of Christmas coming. The preparation that involves no shopping today.

Of course I am a consumer. Too much so, in fact. But not today. Today I hope to exist in silence and solitude. My lists are in progress. I will likely add to them throughout the day. Little things.

The woodstove needs cleaning. A fire burned bright the last couple of evenings, but Texas being what it is, we might hit 80 next week. So, time to clean and stack and lay kindling for the future. Notice the oak and pecan. Discern the colors as I place each piece. Feel the weight of it. The beauty waiting to explode with the scratch of a match sometime down the road.

The dogs will want to play. And eat extra treats. They will be happy I am not leaving on any errands today. They always hear when I open any door. They never fail to greet me.

Somewhere there is a container of ornaments I have lost. Maybe today will be the day I find them. And as I search, I will pay attention to the many things I have too many of, and I will share. I will line up little cardboard boxes and begin.

I look at the calendar and see that in three short weeks, I’ll get to greet my daughter home for the holidays. The thought of that moment motivates me today. The getting ready. The paying attention to little details. The creating of a space so that when she arrives she feels it, too–the “it” that costs nothing, involves no shopping, the “it” that we do to welcome that feeling that has no price.


Leave a comment

Friday’s Five

It is four months until Christmas. Yes, I keep track. 

Kisses from an eleven month old who lavishes them on demand. 

A two year old’s outstretched hand…and little voice saying, C’mon Loulou.

Knit blanket almost ready to send to #welcomeblanket project for immigrants.

Netflix nights.

And, while I sit in a comfortable spot writing tonight, my prayers are with the folks across southeast Texas who are bracing for Hurricane Harvey. Latest tracking shows it’s a Category 4. Pray for Texas. 


1 Comment

Friday’s Five

This past week I sat with my friend D who reminded me yet again that it is time to write the book. The book she told me I needed to write when she found out I was getting ready to walk a terrible and tragic path. The book she brings up from time to time, but never more forcefully than this past week. You have the time now, friend. 

And, as most true friends have the tendency to be, she is right. So, in the spirit of internet accountability, I share my intention here. I also ask a favor of whatever  group of humans might read this post: pray for me, please. Pray that I will discipline myself to write daily, that I will write clearly and true, and that one day my words will find the right people and help them.

I know that God has a way of making the most amazing things happen, and I know He has set me up with time to write this year. He continues to put people in my path who show me this book is needed. He is persistent. 🙂

He has shown me that I have a tendency   to sabatoge my plans by letting myself get too busy. He gave me the gift of realizing that, and He keeps showing me in ways that only He can that now is the time. So, I humbly began writing out the first pages of thoughts and outlines and notes. 

I have a long way to go. A lot of word counts to meet. A lot of pages to turn. And rewrites. And edits. I am pretty sure this is not going to come easily. I am almost positive some of the remembering and reconstructing is going to be hard. 

But I am beginning in faith. I know if God intends for this book to be written, it will be written. I have committed to meet Him halfway in this and show up with the pencil. He has been patient on His end, but I know He has a sense of humor. Lately He’s been whispering the reminder that Look, we don’t have forever for this. Get on with it. 

He is the centerpiece of my story, my life, my “one day to be” book. 

I ask Him every day to let others see Him in me. He gave me a love for writing and words a long time ago. It seems He is going to let me use something I love to tell about what He can do for all of us. 

So, I still hope to post my weekly reasons for gratitude (probably the short form–unlike tonight’s bolded words), and I’ll of course let this page take whatever twist and turn seems fitting. One day, God willing, I’ll show up here to tell you the manuscript is ready. Then we’ll pray for a publisher. 

On second thought, go ahead and get busy on that prayer, too: agent/editor/publisher and anybody else I’m going to need. As God reminds me, it’s time to get this show on the road. 

Peace. Love. Action. Amen.