While dealing with all of this health stuff, my natural tendency is to sit on our comfy couch, laptop and books nearby. If the weather is sublime, I'm prone to say, "Why look at that - what a beautiful day." I love to be outside, but I just sit here, sulking. This is not good. A healing body needs neighborhood walks and artistic outings.
So, I'm glad we planned an afternoon date yesterday. It did me a world of good to sip Earl Grey tea at Taft, peruse their bookshelves, and get a cup of Monk's Prayer tea to-go. If you'd like to make your own cup of that poetic brew, simply combine chamomile and peppermint teas. Since Johnny ordered a cappuccino, he received a free cupcake of his choice. Thankfully, he selected a cherry-chocolate confection. The cream cheese frosting did look delicious, but I was not tempted in the least by the hideous chocolate-covered maraschino cherry on top. You can cover those nasty things in chocolate all you want, but it is still a maraschino cherry. Gag.
The Stations of the Cross exhibit was inspiring. It was very meditative to read Scripture at each station and see what the photographer's imagination produced. Our favorite station was the 5th - Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus to carry His Cross - a photograph of a stained glass window portraying Jesus and Simon, and it seemed as if the photographer was in motion when he snapped the picture. The large photograph was rigged up with sturdy metal wire and clips which formed a Cross-shape.
My other favorite was the 4th station - Jesus meets His mother - a lovely black & white photograph of a mother and her infant son. Her back was bare with a stab wound on her shoulder blade. This photograph was framed with sticks and pieces of wood to look like a crown of thorns - especially beautiful if you stepped back or turned around from across the room. The verse on that plaque read, "Then Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary His mother, 'Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against (yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.'" I'm not even a mom yet and I understand Mary's deep grief though she marveled at her Son.
Afterward, we stopped by Crate & Barrel; the kitchen section alone is a dangerous place. We purchased some glass food storage as planned, I did snag a "coffee" mug (but only one), a much-needed glass butter dish, and then we walked by a wall of fun, little gadgets. I just had to have a tiny olivewood spoon, a wooden honey dipper, and a tea bag squeezer (genius). Johnny had to have a spout thingy for his beloved Drambuie. We quit looking after awhile - too many temptations and very nice sales people convincing us of each item's usefulness.
Yes, I realize that I have a chai tea bag in that "coffee" cup, but unfortunately my body can't handle too much coffee right now. But I can still enjoy a new mug and look forward to more coffee, right? I mean, chai + sweetener + coconut milk + a cinnamon stick is SO good, even if it's not coffee. Johnny will use the cup for his homemade cappuccinos, too. Hey, don't you think a cup printed with "tea" would be equally cute? I sure do.
Sandy's Market was really cool, too. Lots of beautiful produce, bulk spices, raw nuts, organic eggs, and their grass-fed ground beef is 1-2 dollars cheaper per pound than Whole Foods. And hello! There was a LONG wall of bulk tea and herbs - I caught a glimpse of my future as a suburban herbalist. There was also a huge selection of organic coffee, including Southern pecan. Needless to say, we'll be incorporating Sandy's into our natural foods shopping.
As for today, the weather is pretty sublime, so we ought to head out on the walking trail. My other big project is right up my alley: read lots more of Andrew Peterson's wonderful book - On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness. I'd love for y'all to visit here again next week because I'll be reviewing the book as part of Andrew Peterson's blog tour. A few fun surprises await one lucky reader. See you then!
[hi there, Caroline. Here's another photo repeat, just for you.]