April 16, 2006

Peace

I wake up early, before anyone else, and take a moment to sit on the comfy couch with my laptop computer. Plastic eggs filled with candy are hidden all over the house, bits of bright color winking at me under lamp shades and behind curtains. My children are getting pretty old for the traditional Easter egg hunt, but when I suggested abandoning it this year, With-a-Why turned his big brown eyes on me, and next thing I knew, I was on my way to the store to buy candy. Boy-in-Black and With-a-Why are both sticklers for tradition; they feel comforted by the familiar rituals done every year, the same way, the same time.

When my kids were little, early mornings meant breastfeeding and changing diapers and sleepily trying to entertain active toddlers. Now that my kids are older – most of them teenagers who willingly sleep late – early mornings have become a quiet time to myself, time to walk in the woods, write in my journal, or just stare out the window with a cup of herbal tea.

Later this morning, I will wash lettuce and chop vegetables to make a big salad to bring to my mother’s house. When we get together for holiday meals, I always bring the salad. Right now, I take a few minutes to relax and write a blog post. I click through photos on my laptop, looking for one that will fit for Easter morning, and find an early morning photo taken at the monastery, the place where I go for retreat every spring and every fall.


monasterybarn


I love dawn mornings at the monastery, wandering by myself through the barns and the sheep fields, listening to the bird song, sometimes climbing down the stone steps of the chapel to sit quietly and listen to the monks in their dark robes chanting. I watch the sun rise on the hills, early light touching the white fleece of the sheep and colour glowing around the edges of the clouds. I hope on this Easter morning that my blog readers, no matter what their faith, can have some early morning peace.

18 comments:

Jennifer said...

I'm still at the toddler stage of mornings, but an early morning ferry ride across Sydney Harbour pointing out landmarks with my two young boys was serene enough that I wish I was a good enough writer to do it justice. Certainly gave me inner peace, if not appearing outwardly peaceful!

A peaceful morning to you and yours.

hypatia said...

My sister and I each get an advent calendar every year (the kind with cheep chocolate inside). Because when we were 18 &16 my mom tried to stop giving us one and there was such a firestorm of protest that they were reinstated. Now - 10 years later - we could probably live without (or I could at least), but they still come every year.

Girl said...

Happy Easter, Joe!!

--Girl

Kari said...

I've been an observer here for a while, but I have to comment today. Thank you for the beautiful post and picture this morning. The peace they conveyed made me cry (I'm in the midst of a move with two young children, to a town that I hope will be a better match for us). Thank you, Jo(e), and Happy Easter!

Bitty said...

Thank you, jo(e)! Happy Easter and much peace to you, too.

joanna said...

Amen, Jo(e).

RageyOne said...

What a beautiful and peaceful photo. I love my mornings as well. Happy Easter!

Mieke said...

Happy Easter!

Seeking Solace said...

What a beautiful photo.

Reading your post reminded me of when I was little. My family would get together with my dad's siblings and their kids and we would all go to my great grandmother's house for Easter. At some point during the day, all the moms would "disappear" and travel to my grandmother's house to hide Easter eggs for all the kids. We would then drive over and have a blast finding the plastic eggs filled with candy or silver dollars!!!

Happy Easter!!!

rachel said...

i had a very peaceful morning, thanks! I'm glad you did as well.

happy easter to the whole Joe clan!

mendi-la said...

Happy Easter Jo(e) and peace to you and yours. I got up at 4am to hide decorated eggs for my girls. They woke up at 6 and the 3yr old enjoyed the hunt. She was even sweet enough to share the booty with her one year old sister. I look forward to the day that they sleep in but I'm still enjoying my mornings with them while I can.

Scrivener said...

Happy Easter! Peacefulness, though? I didn't know it was possible to feel peaceful in the mornings. Maybe in a few more years when our kids are sleeping late I'll try that out myself.

Friday Mom said...

Beautiful picture. I love the tree. Happy Easter!

Leslee said...

I guess you're never too old for some traditions.

St. Casserole said...

Thank you for this post, the picture and the wonderful tradition of Easter Morning even if children are getting older. I insisted on a stuffed toy bunny until I was 17....

susan said...

While I love waking up with CG each day (for the past year, I've been waking up about when she does--usually her stirring wakes me), I really miss that early morning peace.

We're on the early side of creating family traditions, and I hope CG appreciates them as your kids do.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Thank you, jo(e), that was perfect.

It's funny how much my brother is like your boys. (I was already marvelling about that, when you posted pictures of the weekend concerts.) My brother is a stickler for family traditions. He's the organizer of family presents, of decorating the Christmas tree, of family dinners.

Happy Easter!

Mona Buonanotte said...

Gorgeous photo, jo(e)!