It's Monday morning again. Here we go!
Time to . . .
On Mondays I share a few tidbits and miscellaneous things I discovered over the weekend. A little of this, some of that. Things to amuse, amaze, entertain, or inform. Maybe even something to rev you up!
So. Let's get to it.
"Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circle of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace."
--- May Sarton
It seems everywhere I look these days, I am seeing images of artist Ruth Asawa's incredible wire sculptures. I've had the great pleasure of seeing her work up-close-and-personal at two separate exhibits in Chicago over the last few years. Amazing stuff!
There is a new(ish) biography out about Ruth Asawa, and I'm eager to get my hands on a copy. (Click here for an Amazon link.) In interviews about the book, biographer Marilyn Chase describes Asawa as someone who could, "create something beautiful out of any situation." Asawa faced many hardships in her life (including life in an internment camp during World War II) and Chase explains that “What inspired me the most was her ability to turn swords into plowshares. Every time life dealt her a blow, she turned it into something wonderful, something creative.” I think we can all use a little of that kind of inspiration right about now!
Are you having a hard time concentrating on your reading these days? I know I was at the beginning of the pandemic stay-at-home phase last spring, although it seems to have gotten easier for me to focus on my reading lately. Apparently, this difficulty with concentration was/is fairly common. Here's an article that suggests rereading favorite childhood books can help get your reading habit back on track!
In an article from The Atlantic, columnist Emma Court touts the unexpected benefits of rereading your old favorites:
...revisiting [childhood favorites] as adults can also provide comfort, relaxation, and the pleasure of rediscovery. Not only do rereaders rediscover the story, but they may also rediscover themselves.
Rereading “reminds us that we can experience something intensely and not be seeing everything at the time. And going back, we see something different,” says Jill Campbell, an English professor at Yale. “It’s a way of thinking more about a book that’s had an impact on you, but it’s also a way of thinking about your own life, memories, and experiences. The continuities and the differences.”
If you're having a hard time concentrating on "grown-up books" right now, maybe try rereading some of your favorite childhood standbys. It's fun to revisit old "friends" -- and who knows? Maybe it will rekindle your enjoyment of reading. (Of course, rereading old favs is also just plain fun anytime!)
What are YOUR childhood favorites? What book would you grab first for a reread?
Do you ever wonder . . . if animals are noticing the slower pace of things because of the pandemic? Well, here's an interesting story from NPR about the humpback whales in Alaska's Glacier Bay. They're definitely noticing that the ocean is a quieter place for them this year!
Usually about this time of year, Tom and I are putting together and actively monitoring our "watch list" for all the movies with "Oscar-buzz" due to be released in the fall. This year? Oh, we're paying attention. But we won't be heading to the movies any time soon! (I don't think the movies will even be released in the usual way this year. . . )
Anyway. We just watched a movie from last year's list that we missed when it was (briefly) in our local theatre. It has an odd title, but is just delightful -- The Peanut Butter Falcon. It's charming and heartwarming and beautifully filmed, too -- just perfect for These Days. (You can stream it right now on Prime, Netflix, and Hulu.) Next time you're looking for something new to watch, give it a try -- and let me know what you think!
And that's it for me this Monday.
I hope your week is off to a great start.
We'll get through this.