The empty minutes

embroidery floss

I am still here. Just not here.

Which is why I really needed to read these words today from The Art of Simple.

Here’s a snippet:

“I wouldn’t do more, I would simply learn to see. I would see the creative nourishment and mindfulness waiting in the empty minutes of the day. And I would pick up the needles and knit, if only but a few stitches (this morning it was only 4 or 5). I would color slowly across the linen with embroidery floss, just one stem of a flower. I would open the journal, pick up the pencil, and sketch – what did that cloud look like today?”

Yesterday I stitched a line on the Valentine card that is still not done. I did it while helping with homework, providing parenting support, watching an episode of Call the Midwife. I did it in fits and starts. Sometimes, that is the only way we can do anything. But anything is something, isn’t it?

6 thoughts on “The empty minutes

  1. Marian says:

    “Fits and starts” – Yes, absolutely agree, that this is often the only way to do anything. I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but my Dutch mother would often tell me, “one thread a night” as I worked on various stitchery projects. I know she was encouraging me with a version of “Rome wasn’t built in a day”, telling me that that was the way to tackle an otherwise daunting project, the end result (ie. the completed project) being the key. I really like what The Art of Simple is alluding to: that these small moments aren’t something to be grabbed and filled just because they’re the means to the end, but rather, that these creative moments are nourishing in and of themselves, regardless of when or even if the project ever gets completed.
    Marian recently posted…Processed Food is a Slippery SlopeMy Profile

  2. Kate says:

    It makes me think of a pattern for a two-colored scarf I once saw. She wanted to put colored lines in at random but knew she couldn’t eyeball “random” so she decided that every time she put her project down for an hour, the next time she picked it up, she would put in a colored line. I loved the idea. Not only was her finished object beautiful but it was made up of little and long stretches – and that beauty was only possible because she put it down for other things.
    Kate recently posted…7/52My Profile

  3. May says:

    Love the vibrancy in your photo. Our church youth group is soon heading to New Orleans for mission work. One stop is a children’s hospital where they plan to pass out teddy bears. One lady knitted the basic bodies, and my job has been to breathe personality into them with yarn and imagination. Oh, how I wish I had them earlier so that I could have done a little at a time. I would have enjoyed it so much more to take time and allow my ideas to simmer. But as life would have it they arrived in a bunch with a deadline!
    May recently posted…Fount of KnowledgeMy Profile

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