Dear Friend,

It’s been too long, I know. As school has started I’ve been adding too many classes to my schedule, continuing on at work, and just wringing all the usefulness out of every single minute of the day. I am taking 21 credit hours this semester (not smart, I know, I’ve been told) in order to guarantee that I can graduate on time. Which means not a minute can be spared during the week. Sundays though? Sundays are freedom. Today for example I slept in past 8, headed out to camp overlook for church retreat, knitted my way through a moving service about how/why singing is an important part of our worship and faith, worked on a project for my sister’s upcoming birthday, downloaded a BUNCH of new music from Noisetrade, and just finished trying out a new brownie recipe.

Part of my trip this past semester was spending Shabbat weekend with an orthodox Jewish family, and then participating in 4 additional Shabbats throughout our time in Israel. I fell in love with Shabbat and the idea of setting aside time to step away from the “world” so to speak. This semester, my “world” is overcrowded with papers, lectures, articles, spilled drinks, and dirty tables… so as an act of self-care, I’m going to try to be taking a Shabbat of sorts to step away from my “responsibilities” and to focus on rejuvenating my spirit.

Will this last throughout the entire semester? I hope so. I will do everything I can to keep it that way. For now, I’m just going to focus on knitting that next stitch and measuring that sugar and flour, because for me slowing down and breathing deep is what is going to keep me going.

Love, Mandi Jo