“Always a Candle” and also, a Crockpot

Hello, friends! It’s been a while… This is post number 4 since we got married, I believe, and I wasn’t so faithful in the months before that. Life is changing, I guess, and I have changed some since I started this blog almost three years ago.

“You don’t write much anymore,” Ben said the other night, wistfully. I think he was referring to blog posts, but he may have also been thinking about the absence of long dramatic missives like the ones I wrote to him in the early months of our relationship. These days such missives seem to have been replaced with words that come out of my mouth in response to the immediate stressors of life, such as, “We need to leave, we’re gonna be late!” Or, “Hey, you’re home already, it’s good to see you!” or “Ben, my goldfish are dead, they’re both dead! I killed my wedding fish!” (I did, dear readers, just yesterday… I changed their water and they both died by evening… My heart was broken, and poor Ben didn’t know what to do with me.)

Marriage is a strangely normal and undramatic and wonderful kind of thing. It includes wide ranges of conversations, little love notes, and shared groans when you both have to get up at 4:30 AM, like this morning… But very few long and dramatic missives.

I tried to think why I haven’t been writing much lately, though, when Ben addressed the subject with me–“My mind is so full of domestic things, and making food, and keeping house, and stuff like that that there’s no room for deep thoughts anymore,” I told him. “Or maybe it’s because when you’re married you live more externally, so you don’t have time to just think about big things in your head…” Then again, “Maybe I’m just busy.” It could be any or all of the above things that leads to my lack of blogging worthy thoughts and topics. Would you like to hear what I made for supper last night? Hmm, maybe not.

Still for Ben’s sake, and others who read my blog posts and tell me that they enjoy them, I want to keep writing. Even in the absence of those weighty thoughts about life, theology, and the human experience that used to always be there, ready to be written about.

If anyone has any topics they would like to hear about, they should address it with me, here or personally. Until then, I’ll tell you what we had for supper last night.

We had crock-pot food. My crock-pot is one of my most loved kitchen tools–that and my adorable aqua Dutch Oven. They both were bridal shower/wedding gifts. My crock-pot has already experienced much, between my everyday use of it, and our weekly fellowship meals. It has aqua handles and flowers all over it, and it is truly as beautiful and happy as a crockpot can be. It was from my mother-in-law.

Last night, I threw some food into it, during the afternoon, for Ben and me to eat after we got home from discipleship classes at church. I asked Ben what to make, and he said he doesn’t like when I ask him that, and do I want him to study cookbooks so that he can reply to these questions?

I said, “No,” and didn’t consult a cookbook. Instead, I placed frozen chicken on the bottom of the crock-pot, covered it with seasonings, shredded cheese, and a can of cream of mushroom soup. I dumped frozen brussel sprouts from Walmart on one side of it, and cut potatoes in nice, wavy wedges with my wavy edged slicer. (Wavy-edged potato slices are Ben-approved, as compared to the disdained “chunks of potatoes”… I am learning.) I tossed the potatoes with about every seasoning I felt led to–paprika, salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic powder, and threw them also into the crockpot. Everything cooked on high for a matter of about 3 and a half hours, and the final result was creamy, soft, and flavorful food. We both enjoyed it, until we noticed Alison’s dead fish… After that, our desire for seconds left us.

This is the end of this blog post. I just have one more thing to share.

I have created a small book to sell to any of my readers that would be interested, as a way of celebrating this Christmas season. It is called, “Always A Candle”–the theme of the book is how there is always a light in the darkness, when we focus on God… It includes a few of my most popular blog posts, as well as a couple never before shared items. I’m including pictures of it here.

If you are interested in ordering this book, text me at (717)513-3835, and I will take your order and address and see that you get one! I will be selling them for $9.89–plus a dollar if it needs to be shipped to you.

Thanks for your consideration, and I hope that someone out there receives comfort and a light in the dark, as a result of the work I put into designing this!

Until next time, may your days be merry and bright… Blessings and love this Christmas season!

P.S. It’s a few days later, and I just wanted to share something, before I post this.

Sunday night we gathered in our church auditorium to sing Christmas songs. At the end of the service, we all circled the auditorium, lit candles in hand, lights off, and sang “Silent Night.” As I gazed at my own candle, and the candles of the people I now call my church, I had a feeling wash over me, a certainty that often gets lost, drowned out in the mundane details of life.

I am learning to know well the way in which babies enter our world, and that is what intrigues me this Christmas season. I can imagine the confusion, the pain, the blood, the discomfort… I can imagine Mary, maybe snapping at Joseph in pain. But I can imagine too, the love that filled her eyes when she held her baby for the first time, the pride, the hope that stirred inside of her.

That night, there was a calmness and a holiness. I am learning that life can hold, in tension, both silence and chaos, both joy and pain, both candles and darkness.

In a world where our God, the beginning and end of everything, could send his Son as a small baby, joining himself in a connection so deep and so final with Mary, and with all of us as humans, there will always be a Light that shines, even in the darkest, sinful, and most confusing times in life.

Reach out, grasp your candle in the dark, and sing about that holy night. The Lord will provide.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. So good to read your post again! Blessings to you this Christmas!❤

  2. You remind me alot of myself as worked at navigating all the changes that marriage brought and still tried to be true to who I was before marriage.

    You are right, being married changes so much…some things become so simplified and other things become so complicated! And suddenly you’re not just a wife to a husband, you become a housewife! And while you no longer have to be responsible for car maintenance, every day you have to think about and plan a decent dinner!

    I can also identify with the “you don’t write much anymore!” I used to be a faithful journalist. I had a daily journal and a work journal. I wrote down and processed what I experienced, sorted through my deep and philosophical ideas, and remembered so much of my life. And I wrote my boyfriend very interesting letters. Then I got married, and with marriage came all kinds of changes to my routine and months later I realized that I rarely journaled. I just didn’t seem to have the time or something! It seemed odd since previously it was such a part if my life. Then I also had another realisation. I was talking to my husband about all the things I used to write about. I sorted my experiences and ideas out with him and the need to write and process through writing was just not there in the same way. So now my journaling had changed. I write things down in my planner to remember, but I also talk and talk and talk with my husband!

    So anyway, have fun as you find your equilibrium and embrace a changing identity!

    1. Thanks so much for sharing this, I loved reading about your experiences, and I identify with a lot of it. It’s good to hear from someone who’s been there. 😊 Thanks so much for the encouragement!

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