"I believe in nights."
~Rainer Maria Rilke
For some reason, I love roaming the house while my husband is sleeping. I like the dark quiet around me, I like sipping tea and reading, or writing. I like cleaning best of all. When I clean at night, I know it will last til morning. I know the empty sink will greet me and the swept floors will welcome my feet. I know the spider living up under the cupboards will welcome the fresh Verbena scent and weave it into her late-night web. The spider only comes down from her tucked-away home at night. She's delicate and lovely. She weaves her webs while I clean, and I am alway careful of her work. A single spider seems to belong in the kitchen - many spiders in the kitchen is problematic - but one spider, essential.
This night I am getting my week in order. Tomorrow is the last day of Carnival, and I have to prepare for Lent. I am making peirogi to store, cutting fabric to cover our statues and images. I am changing the sheets and the tablecloth to purple as well, baking bread, and starting krupnik so that it will be ready for Easter.
In the stores, Easter candy has just replaced Valentine's chocolates. It never ceases to amaze me at how quickly we switch from one holiday to another - with no interest at all in the times between celebrations. How can we truly rejoice at Easter if we skip over the darkness and denial of Lent? Lent for me is a time of reflection and cleansing of body, mind, and soul. I enjoy throwing myself into the fasting. I enjoy the time of reflection, and of course, I enjoy decorating, and dressing for Lent. But enjoyment is only a part of it; through my reflection and cleansing, through fasting, prayer, and even through the Lenten theme in my home and clothing, I come out of Lent renewed, refreshed, and closer to my Lord. The season that prepares me to live out the Easter season well and joyfully.