It’s still all about what it can mean to Come Home to Cooking – no matter what or where you are or call “home”. It’s also always all about what actually matters most in any given moment. And how much we need to keep creating new possibilities that can generously serve the purpose of being alive. To help us remain connected to ourselves and each other.
Back in July I asked you to please stay tuned for future blog installments, as we then needed to set aside the time to heal a pinched neck nerve (and then our devoted dog after her serious knee operation). It all took even more time, patience and care than we originally imagined. But in the meantime, we were also in the process of labeling, foiling and releasing my husband’s 2010 En Tirage sparkling wine, and creating a new website to support that as well.
The first few weeks after I carefully considered, created, and then started living in harmony with my own Joie de Vivre Schedule, I couldn’t believe the immediate difference it made. My basic needs, wants and responsibilities, as well as the number of hours in each and every day had obviously remained the same. But suddenly there was the gift in an already secured time and place for everything that actually mattered most, and all of those everythings could more effortlessly just happen in their coordinated time and place slots. I really had to laugh — both with relief and in amazement.
We make our plans, and then Life intervenes, right? So it really helps to first get in the habit of fitting both your regular and desired additional activities into your carefully defined time frames. That way you don’t set up a ripple that creates unnecessary stress and/or sabotages your other high priority activities — either solo or coordinated with others.
For so many decades, even the most challenging of my jobs included the resulting buffer from essentially non-negotiable duties and schedule demands it’s an employer’s role to require of us. Working as a head chef with round-the clock responsibilities, everything always had to rotate around that commitment. So both my personal and social life opportunities all had to show up at the given restaurant, and then at the end of each long day blurring into night, I’d just go home to shower, sleep a few hours, put on clean clothes and return to work again. And, of course, restaurants also often make a point of being open on holidays to help customers celebrate the occasion with greater ease and festivity, so that’s definitely not a guaranteed time off for staff members. It’s all part of the deal, and so obvious that you’re always at work, people typically neither hound nor honor you with additional requests. They quite rightly assume you just can’t, so they don’t even think to ask. In fact, I always wondered what people who worked at or from home did all day with so much imagined free time and choices available. Now I know. It’s never easy. (“No, no, no, I really can’t!”)
It’s “Picnic Monday” around here today. That’s what we’ve long called the day after Easter Sunday, when we always look forward to cruising on the intended overflow from generous holiday preparations. This year we’re actually both back at work instead of basking in an extended weekend, and it’s not even sunny enough to eat outside in our spring-blooming garden. But at least what’s for lunch and dinner is already taken care of, and we’re still savoring all the fresh family memories for a lasting sense of sweetness that takes both my mind and heart on a picnic.