The most remarkable thing happened last week.
Amid the hazy, warm rain of a summer thunderstorm, a rainbow materialized. While rainbows seem to always conjure those somewhere-over-the-rainbow feelings of giddy fantasy (no matter how old one is), the truth is, they are not uncommon.
But this rainbow, it was special. It appeared like a technicolor ghost, hovering in the air just outside my back door, in the most visible area in my yard. And only in my yard. It did not extend to the edges of my yard; it did not span neighborhoods or forests.
It was, quite simply, my very own personal rainbow:
It was something I’d never experienced before; something I would have missed had I been out, or planted in front of my computer, or zoned out in front of the TV. But I didn’t miss it; I happened to see it as I passed my back door, and so I stopped and stared and smiled. It stayed just long enough for me to snap a couple of photos, then with the same silent proclamation as it appeared, it vanished.
That day, I shared the photo above on Instagram, with a beautiful quote that I thought captured the moment and spirit of my life-nurturing yard, where the deer and bunnies often come to play:
““When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” Genesis 9:16 (ESV)
I am fortunate to have nature so close at hand, so for me, it is easy to remember the blessings of life and land provided from on high. But in the past year, especially, I have felt a genuine pull to a live a less conspicuous, more curious life. A life filled with exploration in the kitchen and beyond, with laughter and private moments and simple gratitude. And although I have always respected God’s creatures and our planet, with so much waste, tragedy, perversion, and blatant evil in the world, I feel an even stronger pull to create a safe haven for myself, with the elements of nature woven through every aspect of it, like a protective cocoon.
While I will always love the exquisite quality of a handcrafted designer bag, and the internal happiness that comes with external adornment, in many ways, I am not the same person I was a year ago, two years ago, three. Things do still make me happy, but these days, I’m finding that those things aren’t always five-inch heels or the season’s It bag. With the ferocious onslaught of technology these last few years (and my early-adopter, geek girl tendencies), I have reached a point where I feel as if it is time to go back to basics a bit. It’s almost as if my creativity is crying out for it, for something other than a flat screen and a keyboard. For something tangible, for something real.
I find myself wanting to pull out a REAL book and feel the pages between my fingers. To laze on a Saturday afternoon with a stack of cookbooks and explore the gastronomic unknown. To write a note on thick, delicious letterpress stationery. To be in the moment instead of obsessively photographing it.
Don’t worry, my iPhone is still nearly an extension of my arm and Instagram remains my bullhorn of choice. I’m not shutting down the blog. I will still wear the heels, don the leather, pile on the bling, and stare in shock and awe at the season’s newest collections. But here on G&G, the focus might shift a bit. I truly thought this year that I could resurrect the outfit-shooting V, the one so many of you started with. But she’s gone, guys. Really, she’s gone. I can’t think of anything more dreadful than shooting outfit posts for the sake of it. There are so many more interesting and less painful things in the world I’d rather do! So it’s official: that chapter is closed. Insta selfies aside, OOTD posts are done and dusted here on G&G.
IF YOU’RE STILL READING after all that, I know you’re a committed follower, and I thank you for that. And I hope you’ll continue to stick around; I kind of feel like the thought-provoking stuff, the posts that might really mean something, are just getting started.
Now back to the personal rainbow.
That rainbow is a metaphor for life, my friends. Let us all look up from our phones, our iPads, our blogs (me included). Let us open our eyes and engage in the beauty that is now, and remember both the covenant and the binds that tie us, so fleetingly, to the people and creatures we love.
Blink and you will miss it. And them.