31 March 2017

a bright passageway: early spring in london

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soon after we returned from our trip to sri lanka and the maldives, i took moses to the victoria miro gallery in east london. there was an installation piece (called passage/s) on display there by korean artist do ho suh that i found to be incredibly beautiful and insightful. i haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since i experienced it!

suh meticulously replicated, in varied super-vivid coloured fabric and on a one-to-one scale, doorways from buildings where he has lived and worked throughout his life. he said, “i see life as a passageway…we tend to focus on the destination all the time and forget about the in-between spaces. but without these mundane spaces that nobody really pays attention to, these grey areas, one cannot get from point a to point b.”

walking through this brilliant piece of art gifted me an increased awareness of and appreciation for the passageways of my life – the in-between times that seem like “grey areas” but are actually neon-coloured, half-opaque slices of mortality that define on my identity and narrative in important and beautiful ways.

passage/s reminded me of two of my favourite quotes:
the true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life (william morris)
and
a normal day! holding it in my hand this one moment, i have come to see it as more than an ordinary rock. it is a gem, a jewel...normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. let me learn from you, love you, savor you, bless you before you depart. let me not pass you by in a quest for some rare and perfect tomorrow. let me hold you while i may, for it will not always be so. one day i shall...want more than all the world your return. and then i will know what i now am guessing: that you are, indeed, a common rock, and not a jewel, but that a common rock made of the very mass substance of the earth in all its strength and plenty puts a gem to shame. (mary jean irion)
and it inspired me to cherish those times between seasons or between trips or between anticipated events, those ordinary days, those in-between spaces.

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here’s some photos from the passage of time my little family spent in our london home between our indian ocean trip and our trip to the states – some beautiful ordinary days.

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^^ while we were in sri lanka, my parents stayed in london (and in our flat) for a few days. they left some surprise gifts hidden in our living room, including this stuffed bear for moses. can you tell he was kind of excited about it? ^^
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^^ we came home the day before valentine’s day and check out this pink and red flower display at covent garden! ^^
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i was “in charge” of valentine’s day this year. i’m a sucker for grand gestures and big celebrations around events like valentine’s day, but i know that ian prefers to keep things simple. so instead of doing what i wanted to do, i planned the day around what he would like to do (even though i think it’s kind of boring :) ). we had a quiet evening at home with my traditional homemade, heart-shaped cinnamon rolls, take-out from ian’s favourite casual restaurant, and board games on our bed after moses went to sleep (we clear out of the living room, which is also the baby’s room, by 8pm every night these days!). it was pretty great.
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^^ moses and i found this awesome wall right after we went to the victoria miro gallery. ^^
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i’ve been considering a transition into a new career path, and at the end of last month had a meeting with a mentor that went really, really well – and i’m so excited about the future! i still have some research and planning to do, but i’m feeling really good about next steps. i caught these gorgeous views from millennium bridge on my walk home after the meeting. the bells of st. paul’s were tolling and the night air was so crystal clear and my heart was happy.
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^^ a couple of snaps from moses’s first ride in a swing. turns out – he loves it!! ^^
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^^ first signs of spring and pretty little sights around this city. gosh i love the daffodils in st. james’s park. ^^
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^^ a lunch stop one day during a walk at my favourite – ottolenghi. i just will never get over how beautiful all the food is there. (or how delicious.) ^^
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^^ colourful scenes from a walk through chelsea. ^^
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^^ trying on part of his outfit for his aunt’s wedding, and trying out new finger foods! ^^
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^^ at a fun “sign and sing” class with baby friends from our prenatal classes! moses is super social and loves hanging out with other babies. ^^
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^^ daffodils!!! but still wearing a snowsuit… eagerly anticipating warmer temps! ^^
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on the first saturday in march, moses and i took the train out to reading to spend some time with our dear friends graham and lorraine (i met them when i was a missionary in the reading area). ian met up with us in the afternoon and graham and lorraine took us to windsor castle!  ^^ i had been twice before (on my mission), but it was ian’s first time. so much history and beauty there. and it was so great to be with these loving friends.
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^^ we saw a great bubble man in front of the tate modern one sunny afternoon! ^^
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^^ more daffodils and swings. don’t you love how moses is looking so sweetly and adoringly at the flowers in that first shot? ^^
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and here’s ^^ how we roll on our way to the airport for a three week trip in the states. ha! ian is the best with all kinds of bags and baby carriers hanging off of him. i love my baby daddy. ^^

we had a really fantastic time in california and utah together. ian came back to london a couple of days after his sister’s wedding and baby boy and i stayed in california for an extra week – during which sweet little mo got really sick and ended up with pneumonia. it was so sad! i feel like i’ve been in a complete fog the past two weeks taking care of him (while on a girls trip with my mom and sisters and then coming home to a very different time zone). but he is almost entirely back to his smiley healthy self, and we are so grateful!

photos from our time in the usa coming next :)

9 comments :

  1. It's always so fun to read your blog. 😊 I love hearing about the day to day and how you manage living in a small space in a big city. That baby boy of yours is adorable! He definitely has his mommy's happy, smiling face! Thank you for sharing your sweet family and your adventures, as well as your outlook on life. It's truly appreciated. 😊

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  2. It's always so fun to read your blog. 😊 I love hearing about the day to day and how you manage living in a small space in a big city. That baby boy of yours is adorable! He definitely has his mommy's happy, smiling face! Thank you for sharing your sweet family and your adventures, as well as your outlook on life. It's truly appreciated. 😊

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  3. I'm really sorry to hear that Moses hasn't been very well. It must've been an awful time for you all. I hope he's feeling better now.x

    I love all the pix, they're brill.

    I especially like the ones of Moses with the London Eye in the background.

    I love the expressions on Moses's face, he's so cute.

    Hope you had a lovely 1st British Mother's Day last Sunday.

    Just curious, are you able to still buy a Mother's Day card for you Mum when it's Mother's Day in the US, or do you make her one?

    Do you get to watch the telly in your bedroom Moses goes to bed or do you watch things on the laptops etc?

    I tried to watch general conference on Youtube yesterday but it crashed. Do you have this problem too?

    Sorry for all the questions.:)

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    Replies
    1. hi julie! thanks!!

      i celebrate my mom on american mother's day, but i don't send her a card. i write her an email, call her, and usually create some kind of small gift. cards are not as big a deal in the us as they are in the uk :)

      we don't have a television! and we don't really watch tv shows or movies. after moses goes to bed we work on different things - ian studies for his big exam coming up, or works on bishopric stuff; i organize pictures, blog, and work on my calling; we plan trips, balance our budget, sort out the logistics of life, call our families, etc. when we want to relax/have fun, we usually just talk, or sometimes play a board game together. we plan to never have a television, actually.

      we watched general conference online yesterday and it worked great - so sorry it crashed for you! hopefully today is better :)

      xx

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    2. How many hours does an adult member of the LDS church spend on scriptures, church, church activities and callings a week?

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  4. So great to see all this after not having a computer for a while. It calmed my soul! Love the people and the places in this post!

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  5. i cannot even handle all his little faces.

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  6. Can you share the name of Ian's fave casual restaurant in London? I love having that sort of info in my "brain's back pocket" when I'm traveling...love all of this springtime photos.

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