Thursday, April 11, 2013

Rituals

Every day routines can be transformed into meaningful rituals.
~~Raymond Cloosterman

My favorite spot in the little garden house Mr. J built.

My body loves routine...or is it my soul that appreciates it?
At any rate, a few daily routines feel like rituals for peace and order.

Although, I appreciate tea and bath rituals that involve products,
I also find pleasure in those that are free.
Like sitting silently in a white space to watch sunlight play over a room's surfaces.

Or, the time spent washing dishes at the end of the day.
Now that I have a dishwasher, I wash only the odd pot or pan, clear the counters of debris, and shine up the remaining surfaces. The reward for this bit of work puts a benediction on the day, leaving the kitchen ready for a new dawn.

Another ritual-like habit: I give myself 15 minutes to wake up before actually getting out of bed...stretching, breathing, and visualizing the activities of the coming day. After I drink a glass of water to hydrate and rev up my metabolism, I take a 20-minute early morning walk around the neighborhood. With the moon still overhead, it's quiet enough to hear birds sing and still enough to smell the scents of trees and flowers.

Morning rituals are the easiest to practice...especially if I get up before the rest of the world.
 Streets are quiet and empty and spaces await my arrival.
 The luxury of an empty canvas of 24 hours about to be filled.

What rituals do you practice?

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17 comments:

AntKaybe said...

I just realized that I don't have any rituals so I am going to borrow some of yours.

rosaria williams said...

Oh yes!
I begin to tap and call the cat to snuggle up with me fifteen minutes before I get up. She and I then go make breakfast and return to bed for another half hour, waking hubby who sits up with us as we eat and watch the ocean in the distance. Only after all this, we can face the world.

S. Etole said...

What a gracious way to begin the day.

yaya said...

At night, I always make sure the kitchen is clean and my lunch and breakfast are ready to pack for work. I get up after hubby and get ready and then we always have a prayer together before heading out the door. I have to be at work early so no appreciating nature! It's usually dark! (until Summer anyway!) You rituals sound much more relaxing than mine!

Hanne Bente said...

Beautiful picture Becky.
Do you think that many have rituals - I love to do the same thing every day.
Get up, drink morning coffee, PC. time (newspapers / blog) has the sun rises in the east / goes down in the west. Wishing you a great Friday / good weekend :) Hugs Hanne Bente

RuneE said...

I'm impressed by the way you structure your mornings. I'm afraid I'm much more chaotic :-)

tammy j said...

oh.
my becky.
if you knew how this post has helped me already.
i intend to visit often.
i am sad.
another beloved dog and a goodbye.
not my dog but loved.
it's always an arrow straight to my heart. i just found out and came here.
thank you. for the quiet and the beauty. and for being you.
love,
tammy j

Dewena Callis said...

What a blessing to read this post right now--for such a time as this. And then to read Tammy's comment as I just read her sad post about a dear dog and then went to the blog she linked to. I imagine Tammy felt just as I did about your post as I did, it was a healing picture and healing thoughts. That beautiful room and then reading of the things you do each day that don't cost a dime but feed your soul to the brim.

I have to build moments in my day to prime the well. There is a chair in my bedroom where nothing work related is allowed. I keep my Bible there, several inspirational books (always one of Gunilla Norris' little books of meditations and my three favorite books of poetry and a notebook to write in. When my body gets tired I sit down and read a little. That energizes my mind and I'm ready to go again. The household task that is most like a ritual to me, other than the basic things I have to do, is polishing a piece or two of furniture. I love that. Now, the washing dishes thing at the end of the day is not, I admit, a pleasure. In the morning when I can look out at the bird feeder, yes. I enjoy it then. I do love what you write about it though. I'll try to think of that tonight! Actually, Gunilla says the same thing as you do about washing dishes. I'm trying.

Jeanne @ Collage of Life said...

Your day sounds so calm and wonderful Becky...I need to take tips from you. What a beautiful space. My day s are always changing..I need to build in more rituals... Best wishes for a lovely weekend.. xx

Beth said...

That white room is so serene--I would feel calm sitting in such a room.
I discovered two years ago that getting up an hour earlier to have devotions, write in my thankful journal and general journal, then taking about 20 minutes to check on friends' blogs and possibly update my own helps me immensely--so much more than an extra hour of sleep.
I fix my coffee first and take my meds so that the celebrex can start to unkink my joints and the hot coffee prepping of my esophagus helps keep the pills from sticking in my throat. After devotion/journal/prayer/computer time, I pack the lunch that I assembled the night before and I gather my school bags and 'whatnots' on the stair chair to glide down to the basement where I pick them up on my way out the door. I make my protein shake last and drink it as I drive to work.

My clothes and accessories are laid out the night before when I get the coffee ready to brew the next morning and lay out my pills.
Morning rituals helps tremendously with coping with the chaotic world of teaching teen-agers!
I loved this post!:>)

Optimistic Existentialist said...

Rebecca I often find myself being a creature of habit and ritual as well. I am trying to make a conscious effort to live more "ritual-free".

Leslie said...

Such a beautiful room. I, too, love to watch sunlight playing over surfaces. I used to walk early in the morning, but not so much anymore. It is a perfect time of day, especially in Florida!

(Hope your husband is feeling better, this morning)

Cobalt Violet said...

I lie in bed and and do a morning prayer and meditate if I have time. I guess that means I should get up earlier, if I am going to run out of time. I wish I was a morning person! I'm such a night owl!

Dimple said...

Thanks for visiting, Becky. I'd like to comment in reference to this kindly post...it is kindly and peaceful...but I am rather distracted by the reports from the Boston marathon explosions.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

Looking forward to your next post :)

Linda said...

I'm fortunate to have a cup of tea brought to me in bed when I wake up, although today it's been the other way around - sometimes it's good to break that sort of ritual in order to do something nice for one another!

Cobalt Violet said...

p.s. I will be at IKEA on Tuesday. ;)