Saturday, March 13, 2010

measured in other ways

THE In-the-Least-Things GIVE-AWAY Concludes!!!!

Well, here it is past the tenth of March and I ain't finished up my give-away even. It ain't time to change my heading picture yet but the leaves will be on the trees again and even I believe that now, after this long, hard, cold, seemingly endless winter. The grass is thinking about greening and it'll bring a tear of gratitude to a body.

I had this other thing I was wanting to write, something about my eldest child reaching his age of majority, but for the life of me I can't remember how it started out in my mind and I can't write it without that. It is probably just as well: I don't tend to write too much about my kids, or our family's unschooling way of life, because when I try to, it sounds stilted. I can't capture the magic of it, the whole cloth of it, just little tiny strings that don't mean much by themselves.

And I never, ever think I get across how important I think this all is. It is like unschooling is many ways, which is far less about what you do than what you don't do. If you want to unschool, what you don't do is schoolish things, like workbooks and scheduled sit down sessions and you don't live a life that depends on external validation. If you want to homestead, if you want to survive and thrive, what you don't do is live large. You can taste large, like you can taste lobster, but if your plan for lunch depends on lobster, you are most likely going hungry round these parts.

This give-away is for me about tasting how sweet the small is, and about moving in that direction. A dishrag isn't a big thing, and that is exactly the point. Life really isn't about the once-in-a-lifetime things. Success isn't about, well, anything that people think it is about. I may still have this People magazine somewhere because I'm funny like that, I tend to keep things that pointed me true. I don't tend to be a big fan of the Kennedy's, or of documentaries, and especially not of documentaries of southern Appalachia (they are either filled with pity for us or are making fun of us, and pretty much all documentaries are condescending and meant to change whatever it is they are looking at), but I read this review of a documentary that (I think) Rory Kennedy had made in eastern Kentucky, right over the mountain from where I was raised. The reviewer, who was condescending, quoted Rory, who was not -- she said, "I learned that success can be measured in other ways, like how close your children choose to live to you after they are grown."

Success can be measured in other ways.

Everyone who played with me is a success.

*Madcap probably makes way more stuff than I do and I love her potholders! But her candle dripping saving is one of these things, I think, that is maybe just a bit outside what we normally do and yet simplifies things.

*Mickle knits her own dish rags instead of crocheting.

*Wendy does tons and tons of stuff, I'd almost think she was a kind of a purist from following her blog, at least way more than I am. It was her deodorant that I liked the best -- something I hadn't even thought of trying to do myself. If you want to make yours, how to is in the comments section of the give-away post. Should I get around to trying this myself, I may post it on the blog.

*I'm not sure whether Clairsgarden wanted to "play" or not, but she remembers the dish rags from her granny and will pass the idea on.

*Mrs. H gave us all the most to ponder, and I'm just going to include an excerpt of her comment:

It was when we were able to see with eyes wide open that for the most part, everything we knew, had been taught, had learned was pretty much a lie, at least to us. You will find it in the public school systems, in government, the stock market, your place of employment, in medicine, and marketing. . . . Today, we enjoy each other's company, have come to a natural division of labor, and continually find new and exciting ways to get the most out of everything. Truly, for us, we find pleasure in-the-least of things, freedom of mind, body, and spirit is what we hold most dear.
Really, you should read her whole comment, and Mr. H's blog.

And guess what? EVERY ONE OF THESE PEOPLE WIN! Go to my profile, get my e-mail address, send me your snail mail address, and eventually you will get an all cotton hand-crocheted dish rag!

But I am going to declare a winner, and the winner will get not only the dish rag but the scrubbie! Woohoo I know you are so excited! It is

*JUST A GIRL! Why? I like her curtains and I like her sewing machine and I like that she's in a real different place, being career Coast Guard, in Hawaii, and all, and yet still finding her own ways to be true in the least things.

So send me those addresses and see how excited my mailman gets with me sending stuff to New Zealand, Scottland, Canada, and Hawaii!


Just a Girl said...

No way!! This is the best capper on cool things that have happened over the last couple of days.
I learned to ride my motorcycle--should have done it years ago, so much fun.
And my ship was visited by the Coast Guard Commandant (CG, I'm in the Coast Guard, not the Navy-don't even get me started on why the CG is sooooo much better), and he READS MY BLOG!! It was such a great opportunity for the crew to meet the guy that makes big decisions that affect them every day, and he chose to come to my ship because he reads my blog. He said he likes my honesty. I can't really blog about it on my blog, so I hope you don't mind me crowing a little here. But it really was the coolest thing.
But, wow, getting picked as the winner of the In the Least Things Give Away, that's pretty huge too. All this wonderful affirmation when I was feeling pretty down on things...

Mr. H. said...

Thank you CG! And congratulations to you Just A Girl...and everyone else.:)

I will email you with my address and really enjoyed playing along. A big thanks to your daughter as well. You made my day.:) - Mrs. H

CG said...

So sorry Just a Girl! I've obviously no read with enough detail! and don't know my uniforms to boot! I'll correct the post!

And Mrs. H, I was most touched in your note to me that you said it would get USED! YES! Thank you!

Now, the rest of you, get those addresses to me!

clairesgarden said...

I would love a cloth, and it'll definatley get used. thankyou!

CG said...

I'm still moving slowly but I WILL get them off to you all! Loving the thought of these little dish rags being out there!

Madcap said...

Looks like I'm the bad one who hasn't been paying attention - I'll get you that address right away!

Hmmm, we have to use them, huh? And here I was, thinking that I'd frame it.



CG said...

made me laugh!