Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mothers' Day 2012

Today is the perfect day for Mothers' Day, here - the sun is shining; the trees' leaves are newly green; and the  birds are singing.

My son, Paul is working a long day of a split shift at the restaurant where he works, and so he and I spent some time yesterday at a movie. He's soon moving to another city to teach high school, and so I am enjoying small moments of quality time with him, when he's able.

This has been a gentle, kind day - our weather has been cold and rainy for a few weeks, but with the sun, and warmer day, I can hear out my window the voices of neighbours' children out playing, and farther away, what sounds to be a ball game of some sort. I love Sundays like this.

This morning while making coffee, I noticed a very tiny sparrow perched on the window ledge looking in the window. He looked to be very new - maybe just a fledgling, and he just caught my heart. What a curious little guy!

Much of my morning was spent enjoying the humour of Jane Austen's, "Mansfiield Park". I've been reading her novels on the Kindle, and have now just "Sense and Sensibility" to read after this one, to have completed her novels. I've learned that she had a wonderful sense of humour, but perhaps "Mansfiield Park" is the first one, I found myself laughing out loud to. I'm so glad to have discovered her novels, even if at this late time. I saved "Sense and Sensibility", to the last, as I'd seen the movie made of this, starring Emma Thompson, and it was wonderful, but I know the story. However, I'm now looking forward to reading Austen's actual book.

I wish I'd read Jane, as a younger woman, even as a teenager. Her heroines are strong women, sure of their insights for the most part. They seem to be very self possessed. Unfortunately in Jane's day woman's place was circumscribed by class and money. A woman needed to marry if at all possible, and required an inheritance (dowry) in order to marry well. Women who did not marry tended to live very narrow lives in near poverty.

Jane didn't marry, and so did live out her life as a spinster, but still she did find joy in her writing, it seems.
 I find it absolutely amazing that she wrote Pride and Prejudice at the age of 20 years old, and the original version of Sense and Sensibility was written a few years before this, and read aloud to her family. Apparently she entertained her family with her humourous writing, and they knew the worth of her novels years before she was able to find a publisher for them.

I want to write more about Austen's books, and why I love them at another time. I hope my thoughts here made abit of sense.

We had a visit this afternoon from a friend, Teana. My friend Teana, is a "people" person and tends to spread good cheer wherever she goes. She and I are going to walk in "The Gutsy Walk", in early June, to raise money for the Crohn's and Colitis Association. Once I'd mentioned this walk to her, she immediately wanted to walk with me, and she has now filled three sponsor sheets with pledges.

Herbert is always near when Teana makes a visit. And Arthur wanted to listen as well.

Teana and I met when our kids were in the Big Brothers' Association. We spent time together wrapping Christmas gifts for fundraising, at the shopping center downtown; and as well selling A&W ice cream floats to raise funds at the local ex. Her son served in Afghanistan and was there when his first child was born. He's now been home for 1 1/2 years, and his second daughter was born just this March. Having him in Afghanistan was a very hard time - she worried so much. On the day he was out of Kandahar and on the plane to Cyprus, she phoned me and left a message. I kept that message on my phone until just recently.

He's in another city this Mothers' Day, and Teana is invited out to three different functions. After leaving us, she was off to drive a friend home from work, as the friend didn't have a ride; and off to eat dinner at an Indian temple, invited by a co-worker. A real people person!

I hope that you had a good Mother's Day in which ever way you choose to spend it. Some of you will have enjoyed family; some may be missing loved ones; and some may be choosing to treat Mothers' Day as any other day. Some time ago, I found Christmas to be a difficult time, due to lack of family around, and not feeling in the Christmas mood, and someone told me that it is okay not to celebrate Christmas, or to find my own traditions to pass the day. I believe the same can be said about any of the holidays in our year.

It's now close to the evening here, and with my windows wide open I am catching sounds from the park nearby - it is the sound of a drum, and chanting. I'm thinking it must be a gathering of First Nations people. I love this sound, and it always sounds so fitting to me - our lake is named after the Cree word Oskana and was I believe a meeting place for hunters of the buffalo.

Once again, I am reminded of the richness all around me - there is so much to learn, and see.
Wishing you a good week ahead.


The Boston Lady said...

Brenda, I'm just catching up with you today. Sounds like you have a lovely day and I enjoyed hearing about your good friend, Teana. If the cats like her, she definitely is a great person.

I so enjoyed reading your descriptions of everything, I could just about imagine what it all looked and sounded like.

Enjoy your last Jane book. My daughter is a huge fan and I have to agree with you that Jane is a good example of a strong woman in times when women were not to be strong, but dependent. Wendy first read P & P in 8th grade and has probably read it 5 or6 times more. I have to agree with you on Mansfield Park - although I did not read the book, I saw the PBS version and it was one of Jane's funnier ones. She had a great sense of humor and sense of people's true character.

Hope your week goes nicely. I am expecting my youngest brother, Mark and his lady friend tonight. They will be visiting for about 2 weeks so I will be quite busy, but hope to post a few times, especially when we go for a long weekend to the beach this week.


Mullin Avenue Workshop said...

Thanks for visiting here today.
I agree with you - cats are really good judges of people!
I love that Wendy read P&P several times - I think it is worth rereading, indeed!
Wishing you a great visit with Mark, and his friend!!

Anonymous said...

Now you have me in the mood to read Jane Auston's novels, again! Well, some of them again. I don't remember reading Mansfield Park, but now I am looking forward to it.

We went to see my mother in law yesterday. We took dinner and had a nice visit with her, and I got in a wonderful walk along the river she lives on. It was a quiet day, but very nice.

This is the first year that our daughter has lived away. She and her boys moved to Wyoming in March. I heard from her early in the day, and feel close all the same. I am sure it will be that way when your son lives in his new town.

Your friend is just the kind of person that I like! You guys must have some good times together.

Happy Reading!

kj said...

I'm now eager to read Jane Austin too! I've been reading ernest hemmingway for his crisp sentences and dIalogue. Finally I'm ready to re-read what I read in college

You sound wise and content in your own skin. I have an adult daughter and while I delight in her life with her husband and children, I miss being # 1 sometimes.

Wings and roots...

Thank you for visiting my blog, and for lingering! Please come anytime
As I will here


Mullin Avenue Workshop said...

Thanks for reading and your comment.
I think you may enjoy Mansfield Park!
It sounds like a nice day yesterday, with your mother-in-law.
I'm glad that you and your daughter stay close even if she lives away.

Mullin Avenue Workshop said...

Hi, kj.
Thanks for dropping by today.
I enjoyed visiting over at "Options for a Better World" - and your reflections of being in between two generations, nurturing your mother, as well as your daughter and young family.
I know I'll visit again!