Rolling Up My Shirt Sleeves On This Noticing Thing

So today I am digging down a little deeper. Doing some reading and some searching. Putting on my lab coat. And looking for rich and meaty pieces to fold into a post on day 8. Today is day 7. Will you excuse me while I step into my laboratory, my world of words and books and inspiration. I have some goodies for you though that I want to share today. And then won’t you come back tomorrow for some words I’ll be working on for you? If you just popped in here or have missed some posts you can read Days 1-6 here.

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I often go down to the shrimp docks with my dogs at dusk, close to sunset. The days are getting shorter. But it is shrimping season and there is a heartbeat there that is palpable. It is as if the docks, the life of the shrimpers changes, though I know their traditions and their routines may seem well established. But for me, I see a different sky, I may smell a variation of the smells wafting in from the salt creek. I love to do my noticing there. There is peace down by the water. It is a bankable peace. When I hop up on my chocolate covered bicycle seat and head that way, I know that my exhale and my inhale will bring quiet in my life storms.

And that today’s blank canvas was a gift. I only need to ask myself, did I participate as an artist in taking what I was given. Did I invest in the canvas with a creative and generous heart. And most importantly, did I make  a beautiful offering back to God, back to my family, back to this world.

My son just called me and asked me “mom, can we have taco’s for dinner.” I notice this is rare, for him to request a meal. I notice that there is some longing in his almost 19 year old soul for me to creatively love him through the comfort of food and sustenance. I hope that I will hear his longing, executive this dinner with creativity and love which at the end of the day says I notice you, I love you and I care for you. And I hope I make some darn good tacos.

Day 7 Noticing Visual

I am a fugitive and a vagabond, a sojourner seeking signs. – Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

So I am off to discover more, read more, and notice more. To fill my art box with tools with which to paint this canvas; I will see you tomorrow on day 8. I am going off now into a place of noticing. Ready, set, go notice. Until we meet again.


Joining Laura Boggess at Laura Boggess dot com.

Quiet, Noticers At Work And At Play

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Flung is too harsh a word for the rush of the world. Blown is more like it, but blown by a generous, unending breath.

Annie Dillard, Pilgrim At Tinker Creek

hat on the boat


It was at the end
Or was it the beginning
Blurred are the lines between the two
They left
Parted ways
Rode off into the sunset
By way of the waves
And left us there
He and I
To stare at the ending time of day
Or maybe the start of eveningtide
Quickly the quiet quenched
All that a parched soul
Longed for
Intimacy entangled
And the waves rocked the two
Shed of distraction clothed in the salt
The sea
And all He gave
Creation clothed them in itself

elizabeth w. marshall/writer/poet/noticer

Today is day 5. May your soul rejoice in quiet noticing. The praying mantis on my kitchen window earlier this week was a guidepost. His fragile silhouette, eyes wide open, arms bent with a knowing. He, a  gentle nudge, a subtle reminder to bow in quiet reverence. A mantis  marked my morning with the mention of prayer, a posture of quietly communing. Listen, can you hear the day calling you, inviting you. The art of noticing surely says come play and see. Come as you are and bow and give thanks for the God-beauty slipped into the cracks and crevices of an unfolding day.

The series is here if you’d like to read the earlier parts of this journey. And please hear the invitation to subscribe, follow on twitter and facebook or just show up when you feel lead. You are welcome here. Under the shade of this place is an old wicker rocking chair with pillows piped in cotton ticking. I’m pouring sweet tea with lemon slices and cold water over mountains of crushed ice. I will be here while you go off to notice. But I am going out for awhile to do some searching and seeking, to look and to listen for surprises in my day. They are calling me to come look, like child. And listen with an ear bent for beauty. Ready, set, go notice.

The sea pronounces something over and over, in a hoarse whisper; I cannot quite make it out.

Annie Dillard

The Art of Noticing

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What a joy to have you here.

I have been pondering this series. Thinking of how important noticing is in a life of faith and art.

Does Noticing lead to praising, praying, worshiping and offering our gratitude? Perhaps.

Noticing creation in all its glory and beauty.

Noticing all the ordinary pieces of a day. Swirling them around in our soul and processing the mundane and the extraordinary. It is part of living fully alive.

Noticing people, art, emotion, and change. Seasons, our environment and being fully engaged with the people in our world. Our intimate worlds and our larger world.

Here are the links to each day in the series. Sit down and rest and catch your breath. You are welcome here,

The Art of Noticing – A Writing Series

Day One  – in the beginning there were questions – October One

Day Twoget out the windex, things are looking blurry – October Two

Day Three – and I heard be still – October Three

Day Four- taking note of the ordinary – October Four

Day Five – quiet, noticers at work and at play – October Five

Day Six  – now is the time for noticing – October Six

Day Seven – rolling up my shirtsleeves on this noticing thing – October Seven

Day Eight – looking at life from behind the lens – October Eight

Day Nine – in which I look for mid-week joy – October Nine

Day Ten – the weaning – October 10

Day Eleven –lost in a sea of other – October 11

Day Twelve – 

Day Thirteen- one day – October 13

Day Fourteen – left behind- a very very short story or when art holds you hostage – October 14

Day Fifteennoticing through the eyes of a poet – October 15

Day Sixteen – wink, blink, nod, and noticing – October 16

Day Seventeen –  running errands as a middle aged housewife – October 17

Day Eighteen – entanglement – noticing jealousy – October 18
noticing day one the shadow

I hope this will be a beautiful  journey. One of learning. One of practicing the art of noticing. One of savoring. Seeing. Engaging all of our senses.

A little poetry, prose, music, and photography. Art. They will all  be mixed in, woven into this 31 Day journey.

What a gift to have you here. Invite friends if you’d like. The sweet fragrance of fellowship enhances the journey.

Let’s start with these words from a favorite writer of mine,  Annie Dillard.

We are here to abet creation and to witness it, to notice each thing so each thing gets noticed. Together we notice not only each mountain shadow and each stone on the beach but we notice each other’s beautiful face and complex nature so that creation need not play to an empty house.

Tomorrow, October One. Let’s meet back here for the beginning. I am filled with joy. My soul is anticipating. My heart is ready.

Let’s go look and see, savor and taste.

The Art of Noticing begins October 1 for 31 days.  Join me at the nester dot com

I am on twitter @graceappears and on facebook, Elizabeth W.Marshall, poetry and prose if you’d like to follow the series there. Or better yet, subscribe so you don’t miss a daily post. Scroll down to follow me on facebook at the bottom of this home page and click my subscribe tab if you choose. It is at the top and the bottom.

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