The day ended in the hot tub, after a mad dash from our warm bedroom out into the frigid air, icy grass pricking our feet, ending in a great hasty slide into the steamy water.
It had been a great day.
I think the greatest luxury life can afford us is a day where we can think almost entirely of others. That was yesterday.
I arrived at work to see that the project I have been working on for a couple months had come to completion. The project, Merry Christmas, Provo an album of local producers and musicians (and local artists Steve Vistaunet and Justin Hackworth) singing holiday cheer, had been shipped to us in big brown boxes. I cut open a box and pulled out a cd feeling a sense of pride and a huge wave of relief. Every single cd sale will go towards funding United Way's Sub for Santa program. And this year, each child will be paired with a literacy specialist to make sure every child has skill-appropriate books in their home.
And thanks to corporate sponsors, 100% of the proceeds will go towards the program.
I have been listening to this album for last couple weeks and I have to say, I really adore it. It has a large range of sounds from folk to rap, R&B and electronic and I love the production on it. It's happy and haunting. And I really enjoyed working with my best friend Scott Wiley at June Audio and other Provo producers to make it dynamic in all the ways. The Lower Lights* donated the rousing Once in Royal David's City. Mindy Gledhill's new project, Hiveriot produced Up on the Housetop. Even dance music favorite Late Night Alumni contributed a beautiful original song Silent Lights.
If you would like to buy a digital download or have a cd shipped to you, OR BUY ONE LOCALLY you can find all that information here. Right now, you can get this album, Volume 2, and last year's Volume 1 together for only $10. THAT'S RIGHT FOLKS!
After caressing the cd for awhile, I went out with Provo's film crew Channel 17 to film a promo called C. Jane's Guide to Holiday Shopping in Downtown Provo. Our hope is to inspire our community to shop small for Christmas this year. We traipsed all over downtown with a camera and mic, in and out of our local shops, feeling so inspired to think carefully about buying gifts with meaning. And I love chatting with the local shop owners, I know running a small business isn't easy and I am grateful they are willing to be so creative and courageous to do it. Plus, I got to get all sexy on that fuchsia couch (thanks Unhinged!)
Later in the day when the clouds and the dusted mountains were turning November pink, I came home to find Christopher at the kitchen table doing homework with the kids. I jumped on the couch with my baby to snuggle her and in a moments we were joined by everyone else. Sometimes a day at work makes me feel that much more lovey towards them all.
Then the babysitter arrived and Christopher and I made the (ill-fated) decision to ride his motorcycle over to BYU to catch the Ruby Bridges speech at the MOA. We were lucky to be offered VIP seats which saved us four hours of waiting in line. The event kicked off a socially slanted Norman Rockwell exhibit with themes of racism, elitism, family and faith. Ruby's own painting, The Problem We All Live With, is also featured in the exhibit. It was an honor to look at that painting while listening to her talk about what it was like to be six years old and the first every integrated black student at a previously all-white school in one of the most racists parts of New Orleans.
Ruby talked a lot about how racism and senseless violence is still very much a part of our country. She talked about how there is good and there is evil and we need to decided what team we are on. She ended with, "Racism is an adult disease. Stop using our children to spread it."
Racism is an adult disease. Stop using our children to spread it.
It was a really emotional experience. I was caught up in tears almost the entire time. I am sorry racism exists, but I know it does and it is my pledge to raise kids who understand injustice and equality. I want them to be on the good team, and I know it starts with me being on the good team too.
After the speech we jumped on the motorcycle again and fought with the wind and cold to downtown where we hit the last of Justin Hackworth's holiday party. The Hackworth's are like family to me, and I love seeing them succeed in their crafts-Amy's writing and Justin's photography. They bless our lives with their ideas and creativity. It was hard to leave the party with so many people to chat and connect with--we're so lucky to have so many lovely people in our lives.
Before heading home we stopped by to get Flemish stew at Bruges. One of our favorite neighborhood teenagers Jarrad Miller works there and he inspires us to make our kids get jobs when they get old enough (REMEMBER THIS IN YEARS!). He serves us with a huge smile and give us the family and friends discount with a wink.
When we got home--near frozen and feeling stupid for thinking we could motorbike on a mid-November night (we wanted to avoid parking, ok?) and paid our delightful babysitter Stephanie, Christopher and I bounded into the spa to sit in silence and look at the stars.
It's no secret life has been a bit messy for me and many of my friends lately. In the mess of it all, and after many late night hot tub sessions in silence and discussion, spotting the deer as they bound in and out of our backyard, feeling the cold biting our ears, I have found some peace. I hope it's lasting peace, but for now, I have found resolutions I have hoped and prayed would come.
Days like yesterday remind me of the miracle of grace. Somehow life forgives and let's us start all over. And what once felt like a landslide of impossible recovery turns out to be a finale of one type of faith and the beginning of a new one.
But I can't say this enough, thinking of others really is a luxury. And a grace.
Thank you Bullfrog spas! WE LOVE YOU!
* Lower Light's Christmas show tickets are now on sale. But they are going really fast, so feel free to hurry up and get yours. And Grandma's. And Uncle Russel's and Aunt Beth's!