© 2009 Marica

054 – Soul food

The ordinary arts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest.
— Thomas Moore

I woke tired, even after a good nights sleep. The origins of this tiredness lies deep within my being. My soul is crying out “nurture me, stop ignoring me” and I need to start listening to it. Fortunately we have a long (as in 3 day) weekend ahead of us – maybe … I’ll make a start today, but where do I begin?

I thought about the long To Do list Lynsey and I had talked about for this weekend (as always the list is longer than can realistically be achieved in the time available to us). It included endless household chores like cleaning, dusting, washing etc. I wondered how doing all these things was going to connect me to my soul and make me feel more alive, more energised.

Sarah Ban Breathnach, in her inspiring book Romancing the Ordinary writes about the sacred endeavour of housekeeping. She views these these mundane tasks as a way of bringing balance between the sensuous and the spiritual. Let’s face it, our homes are sacred spaces (well, our home is to us), and by giving them the attention they deserve we are honouring a need in our souls. I love this quote from Sarah’s book:

In places and people, we seek that elusive feeling of being welcomed. We want our houses and apartments to be warm and nurturing and beautiful, but they are sometimes territories of chaos and confusion … Yet, the haven the soul seeks is close at hand, within the stove and the cupboard, on the bookshelf, and in the closet. With the eyes to see it, and the hands to create it, we can recover the home that the soul desires.

Source
Anthony Lawlor, A Home for the Soul: A Guide for Dwelling with Spirit and Imagination, cited in Breathnach, S.B. (2002). Romancing the Ordinary (p.211-212). London: Pocket Books.

So first things first, what am I going to make for lunch (yes, we slept in and missed breakfast – technically I was making brunch). Lynsey headed for the garden and I headed for the kitchen.

There is something comforting about the kitchen. It is a room laden with memories, endless sensual experiences and boundless creativity. Our kitchen is the centre of our home, whether it is just us or when we have friends and family around. People congregate in our kitchen (oh how I dream of having an open plan kitchen that melds into our other living spaces without the current walls that separate it off as though it needs to be hidden) – Lynsey and I cook, our guests sit, we have music going, wine and food on hand to whet the appetite – it is nurturing and loving. There is laughter, loads of talking and generally it is a place where everything is right with me and the world. Nothing else matters when I’m in the kitchen except what I’m there to do.

Today I created a tantalising mushroom soup (I know what you’re thinking, chicken soup is the soul soup – oh well, today I created a new soul soup that was equally as nourishing and nurturing), tasty baked cheese puffs with avocado, tomatoes, and some wonderful New Zealand cheese to go with them.

The smells of the cooking infused the house. As we sat down to eat I felt warm, loved and comforted. I hope my waistline wasn’t too drastically affected by the experience.

A meal shared in a welcoming environment definitely soothes a tired soul.

Now onto the cleaning …

Manifesto
08. Every day choose to bring about change.
12. Every day love yourself.
29. Every day eat, drink, rest, work, exercise, play, love, create for your own good. And the good of others.

4 Comments

  1. Zofia
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 12:05 pm | #

    Mmmm cheese puffs… I was going to make them for Sunday lunch!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Posted October 25, 2009 at 10:46 pm | #

    Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚ Ours were delicious as always. They are so easy to make and they never fail.

  3. Rosalene Fogel
    Posted October 27, 2009 at 10:15 am | #

    It’s not fair posting a picture of such delicious-looking cheese puffs. They are reaching out through the screen to me…and I want to pick one up and taste the soul!

  4. Posted October 29, 2009 at 12:16 am | #

    Next time I make them I’ll give you a call ๐Ÿ™‚

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