Sunday, March 10, 2013

Gauche Bullet Points for Lent

  • I'm going to try to keep the homework light and the classes leisurely, for the kids' sake and mine.
  • Like I said before, I think after Cheese Week, I'll be better off without coffee. Will adding coffee to the list of things I ain't ingestin' send me over the edge into a mineshaft of despair? Possibly. Is that such a bad thing? Maybe not. If it doesn't work out, I'll attribute it to giving up coffee too soon after giving up Facebook. It's not like I'm Giving Up Coffee For Lent, it's just an innocent casualty, like your ex-boyfriend's cool mom. I liked you a lot, Coffee but it's just not appropriate for us to be close anymore because you make me think of Cream.
  • My mentor suggested that I read St. Maximos the Confessor during Lent. So I'm going to read some selected works in a little blue volume from SVS press called On The Cosmic Mystery of Jesus Christ. My husband suggested that I not just read it, but make a project of studying and writing about it. Okay. I don't know when I'm going to have time to do that. It's definitely not bedtime reading (not like the Potter-esque thrills and giggles of Everyday Saints!) so I'll have to get up early. Better keep my classes going even slower than I originally resolved!
  • So the question is how am I going to make MORE time to read wacko theology without coffee?
  • I was just getting into making bone broth because Sally Fallon said so, and I am sad about leaving that behind. I bought some teeny-tiny oogly-eyed little shrimp, in order to make a freezer full of her shrimp broth. I also got some miso paste. Maybe those two additions will help me spend less time in the kitchen trying to make the damn soup taste good. Maybe those little oogly-eyed shrimp will give me more time to read.
  • We're coming up on our second spring in this house with a big yard, and I would like to start a garden. This year, Lent falls in a neat, hopefully warm six weeks between St. Patrick's Day and Cinco de Mayo, perfect for getting the garden ready. I say "the garden" as if it exists, but it doesn't. I would like to change that during Lent. I've got a groovy old type-written copy of How To Grow More Vegetables Than You Ever Thought Possible On Less Land Than You Can Imagine and I guess I'll try a couple small biodynamic/French intensive beds. Gosh it seems like so much homework trying to develop a green thumb. But it also seems like a way to be more attuned to God's goodness.
  • Last year was really, really hard. I am scared that this year is going to be harder. I am going into this thing knowing that I have a hell of a lot of crusty, bitter, moldy, cobwebby, scary corners to clean out, and a very small Orthodox work environment (including my husband!) in which to do the cleaning. I have no idea how I can do this without something in me breaking into tiny crumbs. Pray for me. 

That's probably all I wanna say about Lent.


  1. What do you think of Everyday Saints? I saw it was for sale in the CtS bookstore.

    Happy Lent-ing!

    1. I am about a third of the way through and enjoying it very much. It is mostly entertaining and uplifting; like I said above, it's perfect bedtime reading! The author was trained as a cinematographer and was in a pretty artsy Soviet milieu as a young man, so he doesn't take that overly credulous hagiographical tone that often makes me feel a little alienated from say, Lives of Optina Elders. I totally recommend it.

    2. Cool, I'll hafta pick it up down the road. Btw, I'm about 1/3 through More Spirited than Lions right now - you'd mentioned it on FB.

    3. Oh, I'm interested in hearing what you think about it when you're finished. I think it's a brave little book.

  2. I enjoyed your post a lot...was just talking on the phone to a fellow parishioner who said she thinks of Lent as a prescribed vacation from the usual distractions, so that she can run with arms open wide to the quietness of Lent and to the Lord. (sigh) Her husband is Orthodox, and mine is not... But I am less scared than I have been since my first Lent six years ago. I have plans for how to get more of that quietness and I know I won't do a great job of it -- so happy that this is something the Church does together and we have the wonderful services.... one way or another we'll get to Pascha and rejoice!