Sunshine Sunday ~ Rituals

Sunshine Sunday Ritual Breakfast

It’s 6:30…maybe 7. Sun is wrestling through the blinds, but the giveaway is the lorikeet outside the window – Rosie’s cue to wake.

She starts do-do-loo-do-ooodling. I gently lift her out of the bed, so she doesn’t wake her big sister. Do NOT wake the big sister, who needs sleep like a comatose teenager/dragon. Waking the dragon before she’s ready does not bode well.

Rosie and I spend an hour or so reading baby books, or doing a puzzle. Sometimes I’ll go for a short run with her in the pram. “Rum!” she calls out excitedly, as I get out my fluoro pink running top.

At last, the dragon stirs, and with a Pip and a Pop, she’s leaping around the living room less like a dragon, more like Joy Unbuttoned. The coffee machine goes on with a brurrr – a sound I hope will wake the other slumbersome dragon from his den.

I put on the eggs to boil, the toast in the toaster, and grind the coffee. While the eggs boil, I set the table – cacciatore salami, chorizo, smoked salmon, triple cream brie, tomatoes, sauerkraut, chutney, plates, egg cups etc. The art of preparation has been finely tuned so that all systems are in synchrony. The second coffee should be being made just as eggs are reaching their perfect point of boil, and the toast has popped.

The second coffee on the table is the cue for people to come sit.

Breakfast in the sunshine house. No matter what’s going on, it’s a ritual I insist on. The other day, I ate a peanut butter sandwich and swigged cold tea while finishing off a contract before 9am, instead of sitting up for sunshine breakfast. It was a poor substitute.

Our breakfast ritual stems from Gregor’s heritage. His family have lengthy decadent continental breakfasts every morning – and breakfast will usually be the only meal until dinnertime. It took me a while to move away from my cholesterol-free porridge, or healthy muesli with tea start to the day. Now, anything less than our usual spread seems like cheating. Breakfast, or Break Fast With Feast, is a languid hour, easing me properly into the day. Not sure how we will go when Elfie has to go to school.

When I was at uni, I wrote a ten-minute play about rituals called The Perfect Point of Boil. It was about an older couple whose existence had basically been pared down to the rituals of how they made their tea.

Most families will have a ritual, or series of rituals, that define the pattern of their day.

What are yours?

Share your stories about rituals for Sunshine Sundays here. Drop in to visit the other linkees. Sadly, Kate, who has been joining us here each week with the most stunning posts, will be taking a little break while she does that thing called Life. We will miss you Kate! For everyone else, next week’s prompt is “Earth”.

PS…Did you do Earth Hour? We nearly forgot! 

Sunshine Sundays

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A little ritual in one’s life

Ritual. What does it mean to you?

To me, ritual never seemed very important. I had routine. I had a class time-table. I had church services at school. I had Schoolies. I had graduation – oops, no I missed that. And then, one day, I had a wedding.

Before getting married, I didn’t think much about ritual and the seriousness of weddings. Before my own wedding, and attending weddings of close friends, I had always thought it was difficult to find the bride in the meringue. I looked, I tried, but I couldn’t work out what all the fuss was about.

We didn’t have much of a lead up to our wedding. Let’s say it was about 6 months from meeting, and 3 months of an engagement. Of that time, only about 2 months were spent in each other’s physical company. Let’s just say we were taking a punt. And we knew it. We knew we were being brave warriors, flying in the face of wedding tradition by not taking 2 years to organise the big day and not planning a honeymoon. We were light-hearted about it. Until we got to writing the vows. And I realised for the first time what ritual meant.

Weddings are a ritual. A serious occasion, iced with marzipan, to cement and make official the love between two people (note, I did not say a man and a woman).

So every word of the vow we uttered was completely serious, and designed to convey the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Because we had known each other so momentarily, our vows were very short. We didn’t promise to be with each other to death do us part. We had no idea. We could only promise to support the other to grow as they needed to grow. And everything else just had to wait and see.

If I made my vows now, I would include a bit more adulation. Five years in, I have more to go on. You, my husband-to-be, are an amazing wise and kind man, who makes me complete, rested and grounded. You make me laugh every day, and no kidding, I don’t think I have had a really shit day since we got together. You share most of my passions, my feelings and my thoughts, and quietly tolerate those you don’t share. I promise to support you to be whoever you need to be, and grow however you want to grow. I promise, as much as possible, to be with you in sickness and in health and to death do us part. Thank you for loving me as myself.

Anyway, ritual is important, I have come to realise.

In recent days, I have introduced a little ritual into our household routine. There is ritual in our eating together and other daily activities, but this recent ritual has more of a traditional, spiritual feel. Inspired by a friend, and Elki’s love of Ommms at yoga class, we set up cushions, light an oil burner, and sit in a circle saying Oms and a blessing for the day. Elka is very fond of sending love and nourishment to all the children of the world, then clasping her hands at heart centre to say “Om”. Our ritual is an evening ritual, a time otherwise known at the Witching Hour – when dinner has been served and mum frantically tries to wash up, and prepare Elka for bed, while Elka rushes around crazily, making demands to read to her, and rolling around naked on the bed. Crazy hour is now peaceful Om hour, and all our wild energy is contained and channeled into our Oms.

Tonight, we did a special ritual for my dear friend, Margot, who passed away nearly 8 years ago. Because today would have been her birthday, we planted a frangipani in the garden, then, on Elka’s insistence, set up our cushions for our Oms. Tonight, we lit our candle for Margot. I had to ask Elka to stop talking momentarily, while I said my blessings for Margot, thanking her for knowing us, and being so kind and funny and grounded and amazing.

In all my wisdom and wifeliness and mumminess, I now greatly value ritual in my life.

Blessings to Margot and all who knew her.