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I found a new blogger today from Canada. I also learned that Canadians source their own oil from the vast reserves under Alberta. Here is a link to a hilarious post by Jeni, about laundry.
When I get to know her more, I will fill you in.
I spent today learning more about social media.
You will see some improvements around the Laundry Line, including the call for designs for a new post set up for my backyard.
See the debacle here.
Til then, make sure you get your pumpkins this weekend because if you wait until Tuesday, they may be soggy if you are in the North East or sold out altogether and that is not a good report to bring home to your candy starved kids.
1) dryer buzzers going off just as you are falling asleep in a dark room
2) oil stains on new blouses purchased online by web browsing teens who seem to attract stains to new clothing
3) tissue fuzz, particularly on black yoga pants
4) stinky polyester clothing that does not release odor, especially sporting togs
5) felting sweaters when all you meant to do was wash them gently
6) zippers jangling inside the dryer tumbler
7) hairpins in the trap within the washer, too deep for daily access, but when I investigate the trap once a season, I discover the dimes and pins and needles that escaped initial inspection and supply potential ruination of the motor
8) socks in balls or knots
8a.) single socks of any sort
8b.) single socks found in gym bags, in shoes, or in spidery corners of the house frequented only by weekly vacuuming and rarely visited by agile teenagers adept at kicking soccer goals or winging lacrosse balls but have horrible, unskilled and apparently untrainable aim at laundry baskets.
9) things that disappear in to the corners of fitted sheets forever, or until that sheet is back in circulation, which depending on the season, could be nine months from now.
10) when my sheets on the line get too wet in the rain that has been falling for weeks in the Berkshires, but only yesterday was brilliant, so I hung them out as I am wont to do. I left for the evening before taking the sheets in, so there they were, all night in the dark sweet starry air and when I woke early to the sound of rain thrumming the gutters I figured, oh I had a few hours of grace, they’d be okay, so when I returned hours later from a class and a meeting, I found this:
Upcoming on the Laundry Line: A Design Contest for my next set of posts, the kind that get sunk in the ground by excellent husbands.
Yours, from the woman who will be using a dryer for awhile,
“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything
self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.”
— Ray Bradbury
Stern instructions from a massively creative man.
How about this from Rumi?
The Treasure’s Nearness
A man searching for spirit-treasure
cannot find it, so he is praying.
A voice inside says, You were given
the intuition to shoot an arrow
and then to dig where it landed,
but you shot with all your archery skill.
You were told to draw the bow
with only a fraction of your ability.
What you are looking for
is nearer than the big vein
on your neck. Let the arrow drop.
Do not exhaust yourself
like the philosophers who strain to shoot
the high arcs of their thought-arrows.
The more skill you use,
the farther you will be
from what your deepest love wants.
Or here is what I say:
Lead with what you love.
Yeah. Just like that.
When I wrangle words either with my children or my writing, they both grow pale and strained while I scour away at a conversation trying to make my point clear, or I swab a canvas with images trying to create an effect that is just not flowing from me. I push thoughts out before attending to the present with love. I am always more effective when I lead with what I love.
And, I love laundry.
I think we can often consider what we love to be trivial or mundane.
I believe the ordinary is extraordinary.
And worth expressing.
Because, this is what I know, this life of clothespins and arguments with a sweaty teen ager who is in one moment kissing my hand with gentlemanly poise and the next slathering me with a barbed tongue, this is what I live.
I stood out at my laundry line just now, feeling the sun warm my scalp as I pinned up last week’s sheets. Things are drying today so quickly, even with a little rain rinse.
I listened there at the line, considered the dark green border of the pines against the blue sky, wondered where the rhubarb has gone after such a spring bonanza, curious about the phlox blooming so early and what is scenting the air today so sweetly, like roses only mine are not blooming much right now, maybe the elderberry blossoms which are quickly turning to berries? I love the life I see out at my laundry line and the space between my busy thinking thoughts that is made by just standing out there, apron pockets stuffed with wooden clothespins.
What does a laundry line mean to you?
Toni Morrison said this:
Meaning resides in ordinary things.
Laundry links me to so many things, back to my mother and her sisters and the drama I was so attracted to as they talked in hushed voices while hanging tablecloths and sheets.
Laundry links me to place, the world outside the walls of this house. It takes me out of the arena of meals and chaos and out in to the orderly act of pinching wooden clips over small folded corners of fabric, tugging the shirts flat so folding them will be easy and letting the elements imbue themselves upon my family’s clothing. It lets me marry a bit of the outdoors with what covers their backs day in and day out.
Laundry links me to women, the world over, care givers to groups of people, as we aid them at river banks and Laundromats in ridding themselves of the marks of being alive.
By paying attention out at the laundry line and bringing the fresh space of calm in to my thoughts, my parenting and my creative expression have been impacted.
I wonder what you do, what small mundane act of living can you pay attention to and feel that same spaciousness. What would you do with that space? Write me a few of your thoughts here. If you’d like keep fresh Laundry coming to your inbox, please subscribe in the box at the upper right corner of this page.
Let me also introduce you to Rachelle Panagarry from ArtEyeCandy. She is our newest Out of the Mouths of Babes guest blogger. And, our first British ‘Out’ blogger. Hurray! Read her post here.
Thank you for paying attention here.
P.S. Many thanks for Miranda Hersey Helin and her post this morning that gave me the Ray Bradbury quote and jump started this post for me! Thank you StudioMother!