Earth Day!

images and text by @MelissaOMeekssv flower 4

Hey, remember that time when you were little and chasing lightening bugs in your grandmother’s backyard at dusk? The grass was cool under your bare feet, but the air was still thick and heavy from the hot summer day. Pulses of yellow up rose up from the ground toward the purple outlines of trees against the sky. You reached up higher, higher, and grasped one of these little lights between your cupped palms. Then you slowly cracked open your pudgy fingers and peered down at the tiny creature tickling its way across your lifeline before he lifted off in a brilliant little shot of green.

Remember when you were walking the beach? The sand was rushing and swirling against your ankles leaving little bits of foam and brine on your calves. Beneath you the earth seemed to be breathing with the rhythmic in and out of the waves on the shore. At home, at your desk, you might think that the ocean is the most cliched of metaphors, the most tired of symbols, but there, at the water’s edge you felt something resembling hope and faith rising up in your chest and understood completely why so many poets and painters have tried to capture its power.

Remember the electricity in your first kiss? The satisfaction of the best meal you ever ate? The smiles on everyone’s faces on the first warm day after this unusually long winter?

All these moments — the substance of your body, the breath in your lungs, the energy streaming from your heart — were brought to you by our beautiful, bountiful earth.

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I’ve never gotten that into Earth Day, but, maybe because I dreamed about watching Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life last night, I’ll be looking around at the planet with a little more awareness today.

I want to take Junie for an afternoon walk and marvel at how hot it’s getting here already. It’s supposed to get up to 90 today! I love to watch her eyes following the sunlight filtering through the trees and hear her breath catch when the breeze picks up. How exciting it must be to experience the world for the first time.

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I’m also really thrilled about my slow change-over to homemade cleaning products. Thanks to all the tips I got from facebook friends and Ford and O’Brien’s Homemade Cleaners, I’m on my way! I’ve been amazed at how simple and cheap these cleaners are to make. My favorite is the all-purpose solution of white distilled vinegar and water (1:1) mixed with lemon essential oil — so that the vinegar smell isn’t quite so strong. It’s definitely worth trying out!

Are you going to celebrate Earth Day this weekend? I’d love to hear what you have planned.

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