Sous Vide, Cold Birds, and Humility

Linking up with Like Mother, Like Daughter for this week’s Lenten pretty, happy, funny, real. Sorry about the formatting of this post, but WordPress was driving me bonkers so I gave up.
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Chris has won Valentines Day every year we have been together and he continues to win. This year he cooked perfectly medium rare steak in a homespun sous vide using our Crock-Pot, roasted potatoes, and baked his famously decadent flourless chocolate cake for us and we had a romantic dinner after Christopher went to sleep. He illuminated dinner with the dozens of votive candles we still have in our closet from our wedding strategically placed around the apartment.
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The picture doesn’t quite capture the atmosphere, but what picture could?

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As a last hurrah, Chris took us to the Calhoun College dining hall to gorge ourselves before the self-mortification kicks in. The dessert spread left something to be desired, but I made off with a chocolate peanut butter cup cupcake so it sufficed. And I love seeing the undergrads’ different reactions to the presence of a baby in their dining room.
We took the Yale shuttle home in a desperate attempt to save money on gas and Christopher’s poor little cold fingers concerned me. Chris chivalrously gave up his gloves for the frigid Tweetie and Mr. Bird was quite the sight.
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Not psyched.

I maintain he looked like Wikus from District 9 with his alien hand.
We misplaced one of Chris’ gloves on our odyssey home, which was rather sad. He tore apart the apartment and called the bus lost and found with no luck. But thanks to some help from his guardian angel and St. Anthony, Chris found it on top of a newspaper box on his walk to the Divinity school this morning. Huzzah!
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After rubbing his forehead against my leg, his ashes just looked like giant bruise.

On the bus ride home from dinner on Tuesday, Chris and I made our final decisions on our voluntary penances for Lent. The upshot of my last post means I’ve given up TV and I am avoiding any social media while Christopher’s eyes are open.
It has only been one day, but I’m amazed at what a different day I had yesterday than my normal days at home. The most striking aspect has been the silence. Of course, there’s baby noise and I know the Spanish alphabet down pat thanks to one of his Fisher-Price busy boards, but without constant Netflix/Hulu chatter in the background, the silence is remarkable.
Muting the buzz of social media seemed to make my day twice as long in a good way, like I found missing hours somewhere. After a 7:30am Mass, I mopped the floors, cleaned the dining room, put some clothes in a bag to donate, read, etc., etc.
Most importantly, I felt more attentive to Christopher, more willing to be distracted from whatever I was doing to play with him or hold him, and simply happier to be home with him. We even went to Toddler Tunes, a baby/toddler singalong at a local church, where I was so moved by Puff the Magic Dragon that I almost cried. (“Dragons live forever, unlike little boys”??? Come on!) I took a nap with him in the afternoon when he was having trouble settling down instead of getting angry that my “me time” was being stolen.
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We read books and I noticed new things he’s picking up on that I probably would not have had I scrolled through Twitter all evening.
While I felt so refreshed by the change of pace, I’m also very humbled. It saddens me to think I have missed so much for such forgettable nonsense. And it was only the first day and I will need grace to continue. My phone whispers to me like the One Ring. “Just one glance at Instagram. You need to check your email!” God has clarified what I need to repent of and how He intends to use this time for my good. Praise God for His grace for sinners.
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11 thoughts on “Sous Vide, Cold Birds, and Humility

  1. How lovely! I gave up my iPad yesterday and what a difference it made! I had a similar experience. 🙂 looking forward to this lent for the silence and the more focused presence on my home and my little ones.
    Awesome, too about the glove! I’ve lost so many gloves but never did recover any of them… So I really appreciated your happy ending to that story.

  2. When my oldest was about 6 months my laptop charger broke and it was such a blessing from God because, while I waited for the replacement to be delivered, I realized how much precious time I was wasting. Ever since then I basically follow the guidelines you set – no “me” screen time when my boys are awake. I’m so glad for that experience because now that I have 2 and they are older, they hardly ever see me on the computer (I don’t have a smart phone) unless I’m looking something up.

    Also, I love the ashes photo. Ashes on little ones always makes me chuckle a little. Have a blessed Lent!

    • What a great story! I’m glad to hear that it stuck. I’m sure that’s such a blessing to your boys. I’m worried that Lent will end and I’ll go back to the old ways, but hopefully it’s long enough to form a habit with a lot of grace.

      You have a blessed Lent as well!

  3. “My phone whispers to me like the one ring.” Ha! So true. We also notice significant differences in our days whenever we step back from social media.

  4. Pingback: {bits & pieces}

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