As the summer descends, it’s a cool time, with striking clouds in pinks and yellows and oranges. This morning, I walked two miles before anyone in my house peeked open an eye, and I swear the clouds were huge angel wings following me on my path.
I saw a biker and two runners and two lone cars on their very early way to work. Many squirrels were active, their black fur standing on end, as they vied for position on the fence or tree trunk.
But that was all. In the mellow morning, there was mostly just me and my thoughts. I went over the days prior and the day to come, isolated my thoughts as much as I could into my view of the world, and prepared to meet the challenges of the day.
There is yet another Jewish holiday tomorrow at sunset, and so I went over the pockets of time I have to cook in the next two days. Baseball tonight, baseball tomorrow night, baseball Wednesday night too (who ever convinced me to let both boys play?).
Last night, Eliana led the charge to make the traditional cheesecakes that come with the holiday of Shavuot. This year, we made them into individual cupcakes, which will soon receive frozen berries on top for a splash of color and flavor.
This is the holiday when the Jews received the Torah at Mt. Sinai. The traditions are to have pretty flowers and dairy meals and cheesecake and stay up all night learning Torah.
It is one of my favorite Jewish holidays because the obligations are minimal and the revelations many. Any holiday that promotes late-night learning and study wins big in my book.
I love to scrutinize the whys and the hows, understand better who I am and the lineage from which I come.
My kids may not be so on board with that but I am ok with whatever meaning they glean from this time. It’s just another opportunity for us to be together, stop the clock and truly sit in the moment.
Although the school year is ending, I am letting them miss school so that we can bask in the quiet together and add another notch of reverence to our spiritual belts. We may take a peaceful hike in nearby woods on Wednesday, just to dwell in the beauty all around us.
You see, when we go on our merry ways of everyday obligations and running, we hardly ever hear or see the beauty. We get caught up in the ruminations and the madness, the stupidity of interpersonal miscommunication that seems to prevail.
The beauty of a holiday – any holiday, really, in any religion or spiritual practice – is the island of time it gives us to regroup, connect and cherish everyone, everything, big and small.