Sunday, December 6, 2009

Quilting Bee #34


This beautiful quilt was created by Terri Stegmiller!

Hello all!! It is more than chilly here this fine day..is is frigid really..wind chill of about -10. So the fire place is roaring and there are hot rice bags to warm cold hands. Quick quick..close the door and warm up by the fire. I have hot cocoa all ready with peppermint sticks to stir with. You know those wonderful kind that melt in your mouth. There is Kona coffee and hot tea if you would prefer. I have set out several hot cereals this morning to take the chill out of the bones. Stone ground oatmeal with almost anything you could want on top of it, fruit, nuts, yogurt, berries, granola, brown sugar and cream of course. There is also cream of wheat and a delicious hearty recipe of mine..passed on to my by one of my very favorite yoginis..Terri. Filled with oatmeal, barley, wheat berries, quinoa & flax seed. Mixed with spices and raisins and topped with walnuts and berries. It is slow cooked and delicious. Not to mention wonderful for you. So come warm yourself by the fire and dip into some delicious cereal. I have racked a heavy winter quilt today. Please pull up a chair and join me.

On Friday, I was walking my herd to school..my children and my AM kiddos. It was quite cold, below freezing. Fox was talking with me about how cold it was and that we should have taken the car instead..the whole two blocks. We started discussing how it would be to live in the cold like that everyday..to have no place to call home and be warm. The conversation led to him asking me why with all of the money there is here in our country anyone needs to be cold and homeless. This is beyond me it truly is.

I have never been homeless, and for this I am deeply grateful. I have come close a couple of times..but someone stepped in or we managed to find the resources to stay in a warm safe place. We did for a few months live in a week to week hotel. Not so bad really..warm and safe and had cable TV. No kitchen which made me nuts..but still not anywhere close to homeless. Truly we have been blessed in huge ways. I do know the deep fear of being on that edge of loosing everything and falling into that pit of poverty. That fear of having to take my children to places and experience things I don't ever want them to know or experience.

Tonight the temperature here is going to be a windchill of -10 to -20. The warming shelters here will open when the temp gets down to 15 degrees..15 degrees??? Who made that outrageously poor decision? How did they come to the conclusion that 15 degrees was a benchmark? Is this the thresh hold where folks start to die in their sleep. How in this wealthy country is it possible that we do not have enough schools, churches, libraries, or public places that could serve as places to keep these poor folks warm ..not just when it is beyond bitterly cold..but all winter? That we cannot provide safe and healthy places for folks who want to get help to receive it? How is that possible?

Some will argue that many of the homeless choose to be this way. I guess this is true of some and perhaps at one time..maybe even a large number chose this lifestyle. But with the economy as it is..so many folks have joined the ranks of car sleepers and street folks. Men and women, teenagers and families with nowhere to go. Sometimes they remain there simply because they do not know what is available or where to go to even ask for help. Many of these folks just need an advocate..someone to just help them find the place to start. A ride or cab fare to go and apply and start new. Yes, it is from the bottom up new...but it is a beginning and it isn't homeless. When you are at the bottom any glimmer of light is a miracle. Any small gift, hand up, offering..anything is a blessing. Everything is huge when you are there.

So this holiday season, I for one am actively looking for opportunities to reach out to those around me. To those I know and those I do not. Small blessings from those of us are hugely blessed add up to miracles for those with so little. I know so many of you that do so many amazing things for those without..a perfect example of this amazing love in action is Tabitha..of I Choose Bliss. Amazing soul that one..amazing love..she truly glows with it..she does. If you want to see miracles in action, I encourage you to visit her blogs.

So today, would you share with me your feelings & thoughts about this problem, crisis. Would you like to share something you do during this time of year or during the rest of the year that reaches this population in some way..even some simple small thing? I try to donate as much clothing each year to the shelters..not the thrift stores so much..but directly to the folks that need it. Our School has a donation room for folks who need it. No cost ..just given of freely. I like that. Do you know of someone like Tabitha you would like to share with us about? No modesty here..tell us what you share of yourself for others.

My soap box is stored in the corner now and my toes are warming by the fire. I will have a steaming bowl of Terri's wonderful cereal and a Kona coffee thank you!! Can I get something for you. Maybe a nice warm rice bag for your feet or fingers? Thank you for coming here today! It makes my whole week to visit with you, and that you share of yourselves so freely. Your words touch me every week. Thank you.
Namaste, Sarah

8 comments:

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

Ah Sarah, it is lovely here by your fire and I can't think of a discussion more important than the one you have initiated. Let's not close our eyes, let's not walk by, let's do something even if it is only eye contact and a smile.

Your Quilting Bee, and therefore you, ooze love, kindness and generosity . . . and right now, the spirit of Christmas.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I donate money regularly throughout the year to our local Food Bank, which supplies food to individual families and also to the city's various soup kitchens where people can get a hot meal.

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

This is the true spirit of the holidays...to give of oneself. It should be throughout the year as well. We should all count our blessings whether they be big or small but remember that there are those out there that are having hard times and need that extra help be it food clothing or help with shelter. The hardest part for someone is asking for the help. We all need to open out hearts and see the help that we can give without asking. I've so missed the Christmas spirit in the past few years and I think quite a bit of it comes from not donating my time to the shelters in our old place of residence. They do not have them here but there was always that sense that you did something, somewhere that made someone's life a little easier.

I'll take any stitch of that warm fire...it's cold here!!

yoborobo said...

Morning Sarah - pass me some of that delicious cereal, pretty please, and some coffee. Yum! As for your topic, it has been on my mind a lot lately. We do give to the Heiffer Project this time of year, my kids have always loved the idea of buying chickens for someone. :) But I think something local is in order. Our schools here do a good job of collecting food for the local foodbanks, and there is always a coat drive on-going. I need to sit and think about this for a little while - how to make a difference in my own community. It doesn't seem possible that people have to sleep outdoors in 15 degree weather. I remember a Cub Scout trip I went on, when the temps got down in the 20s we were all shivering and chattering, and we were in tents AND in sleeping bags. It's crazy. We are such a wealthy nation - but you know, I need to walk the walk and not just talk it. :) xox Pam

TechnoBabe said...

Nice post, I like your concern for those in a rough spot. I can't speak for others but last year was an eye opener for me. My bipolar husband was put in a hospital and I was moved to a homeless shelter. Not going into much here, I did not ever in a million years picture being in a shelter of any kind. But it turned out to be a blessing. I was there 3 1/2 months. There are ways to help the shelters,speak to the staff or directors, find out what is needed, let others know, and deliver what you can to the shelter. I know now of people in tents. Shelters are full. People end up in shelters not of their choosing. Hanging shame on them on top of the pain is unkind. I can tell you already know that and you teach the children to think of others and to know about the true sharing.

lisaschaos said...

I had a friend who had to live in her car for a while, with her kids, but she did escape a bad situation and rebuild her life. I'm so thankful I have not had to experience this either.

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