Look, I'm not trying to alienate my male readers by writing about the bathtub again. Even Johnny enjoyed a bath last week for his sore muscles. I enjoyed another mandatory bath this afternoon and pondered, Why haven't I used our spacious bathtub more often? Johnny went to the gym. I soaked in warm water & silence. I marveled that something as simple as oatmeal soothed my skin. I sipped the remaining morning maté in a stoneware mug. I used an old taupe washcloth to dry my hands. I read portions of The Sun and Poets & Writers. I still cannot decide which subscriptions to keep or cancel, so please vote.
As I soaked, I realized that I've sorely neglected reading in 2007. Normally my "books read" list is longer, but the small number is too sad to share this year. While my health has roller-coastered since the summer, I've escaped to blog after blog of simplicity and beauty. I have read bits and pieces in journals, but I haven't completed a whole book in quite awhile. I realized that reclining in the bathtub forces me to be still; to read, to pray, to listen - to calm the hell down. The white tub, counters, and tile + the light blue walls emanate tranquility. By day, light softly filters through the window tapestry, and by night, flames flicker over scented soy and golden beeswax. Much like a good walk, a bath helps me think.
Aveeno's packaging informed me that collodial oatmeal is a gentle, soap-free cleanser which caught my attention. I've switched from shower gels to bar soap within the past few months. Bar soap is much more gentle on my skin and I love the aesthetic of each bar. I'll use the tub more often and perhaps try hair powder (in lavender & clary sage) instead of washing my hair every single day. Lately my locks seem dry. I shall wash my hair one day, then pin up my powdered hair and bathe the next. All this bathtub-sitting should be good for my psyche, too.
In other regards to what is slow, I ran across the Letter Writers Alliance today. 'Twas timely because just last week I received a handwritten thank you note from a friend, and this week Kerry sent me rockin' CDs and a 3-page letter. While reading her letter, I not only enjoyed her thoughts, but also the paper & ink. She lives in California and I dwell in Texas. We work together which makes e-mail necessary, but a letter was a lovely change. I tried to remember the last time I received a letter, or wrote one myself. Both my grandmother and grandfather wrote letters. Nina's elegant cursive and Papaw's rose-decorated stationery are etched in my memory. I still own some of those letters and I'll keep them forever.
I like to e-mail as much as the next gal, yet lately I feel a bit flooded with electronic communication. It seems distant, especially with friends. And as much as I enjoy the many blogs I read, I need to set the laptop aside more often. Take more walks. Rest my eyes. Use a pen and journal. Read more novels and poetry in the rocking chair. Hang inspiration wires - I've been meaning to do so for weeks.
My Mom says I send the best cards. I don't know if that is true, but I do enjoy selecting cards and sliding 'em in the mailbox. Recently I sent quick handwritten notes to my Mom, to a friend, and to "the honey lady" along with a check for beeswax candles and honey lip balm. The content of each note was sparse, my handwriting is "eh", but gosh darn it, they were handwritten. I think my stationery was pretty, too, but I suppose that's subjective.
So, I did join the Letter Writers Alliance for a mere $3.00 and while I was at it, I ordered one "Get up off your ass" notepad because it made me laugh. Instead of whining & moping, I need to sit up, get up, and do.
Our multi-talented friend Allison recently revealed three of her new creations. I quickly ordered a set of "Bird in Field" cards with a matte finish. Those cards will come in handy now that I'm an official letter-writer and all.
To sum it all up, Johnny just fixed me a perfect cup of espresso. In a few moments, I see the demitasse sitting on the edge of the bathtub for a soak at dusk.