What is a commonplace book? For me, this is a space where I post interesting links, reflections on what I’m reading, and the newest recipes I’ve been trying out — a collection of miscellaneous micro-posts.
What I’m fixing:
- I love a good frittata. And I’ve only ever had one bad one — for the record, even a frittata can’t resuscitate freezer-burnt turkey. We’ve talked about my template for big frittatas, so here’s what I use as a template for a small dinner frittata for me and J with a little left over.
- I’m dabbling in sourdough with a starter gifted me by another co op mama. I think I’m in love. I have no idea what I’m doing.
What I’m reading:
- “For 40 Years This Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II” I find this sort of wilderness survival story hypnotically fascinating — also the story of the Maine hermit; Alas, Babylon; My Side of the Mountain, etc. I’m not sure why, exactly. Maybe it speaks to my own anxieties and assuages them by showing life persists through incredible difficulties?
- God bless the local Mennonite used bookstore. We always find incredible books and one of our newest discoveries is this Joan of Arc book. I’ve worried in our saint curriculum for Police Preschool about how to address martyrdom and other scary topics, and this story nails it, I think.
- Strangers and Sojourners. It’s so beautiful but sometimes a bit overblown in its lyricism — and like Wendell Berry’s fiction it very occasionally feels heavy handed and didactic. (Fight me.) There’s a fascinating examination of marriage and some lovely nature descriptions almost as rapturous as L.M. Montgomery, though. (Maybe it’s a Canadian thing?) One character remarks:
“When I left the Party I was an empty shell. Then I met a good man, and he loved me. His love healed me. And that taught me everything. It’s why I think, Anne, that the world can only be saved person by person, one by one. It’s the slow way but the true one.”
Let us suppose that a man and woman, understanding their limitations and their greatness, were to choose to give life to each other by giving away their very selves. Then both would be defeated, and both would win. In the process, both in the end would become a new kind of being, something they could not understand in the beginning and would never choose if they could foresee the struggle involved. If they were to persist, however, both would eventually become free, because neither would be dominated by the will to power. Only by the will to love.
- My kids have started to play Narnia. This is Queen Susan vanquishing me, the White Witch. J and I are pretty sure this development indicates our job as parents is done.
One year ago:
- What Restaurants Mean: on trying to understand why we want to eat out and how to get around that.