no. 19: recent moments of joy

We only have about four days left in this legislative session which has my mind in a transitional place. What do I do when I’m not in session or getting ready to be in session or waiting trepidatiously to figure out if we’re going to go back in or not as I spend my days following up on unemployment benefits for constituents and putzing around my house? Hard to remember. I moved in the last year. I haven’t been here yet for a summer or a spring. I like taking care of my place, working in the yard, rearranging my rooms. I still have boxes to unpack. I will be due for a yard sale. I have some travel planned and I guess I should run for re-election.

I am also planning some exciting and fun pop-up collaborations for this summer and fall around Omaha, as well as some pop-up field trips in a few other cities around the country. I will be sharing the spot with some of the artists and designers I currently carry at 5/9 and showing the new weavings and fiber art pieces I have made over the past several months. It’s a ton of work, but this is the stuff that makes me happy - beauty, creativity, and helping others enjoy it too. And ultimately that’s what life really has to be about.

Up early for school, when the light was beautiful, reading email for a few hours in the morning with coffee on my patio. Meetings where interesting and inspiring new work was set into motion, and an afternoon at the office when everything felt like it was in order. A long walk before dinner.

I love living in such a beautiful place. Coming home to a home where all my favorite things are. Where my daughter is sprawled out, so comfortably, in vintage linens I've collected for a years, surrounded by her favorite stuffed animals, thoughtfully arranged. Her favorite books sticking out of the bookshelf askew, and open in the bed next to her. Reminders of our projects and earlier activities on the table or taped to the wall where she likes to tape things. Sometimes I feel so sad, and so discontent, and so disappointed in my effort, but I never feel that way when I am putting work into myself or my career or into my home. Beauty, order, and luxury can be anywhere. It's not always something you can pay for.

What else?

  • I have a LOT of candles stocked now at 5/9. Take 25% off all of them with code CANDLELIGHT. I have ones that are handmade by my mom, poured into found vintage glass vessels, and I have ones made by Hummingbird Candle Co., a Black woman-owned business and they smell absolutely heavenly.

  • One piece of unsolicited advice: Like more than you dislike. And think about what you like more than what you dislike. And always look for more things to like.

  • I went to dinner on Sunday night at the Committee Chophouse inside the newly renovated Cottonwood Hotel, formerly known as the Blackstone. Reading my friend Sarah Baker Hansen’s review pushed me over the edge and I made a reservation for that night. I can’t wait to return and check out the super cool circular bar. Haven’t you missed hotels?

  • On that note, get vaccinated. Don’t go to dinner, don’t get groceries, don’t have a drink with friends, until you’ve gotten your shots. It’s safe and it’s your key to reentering the world again.

More to come. If you know someone who would like this in their inbox, forward it to them and tell your friends to subscribe. Follow me on Instagram and Twitter, too. If you have a question about navigating the system, getting a benefit, or are generally pissed at the government, contact my fed account at Help me pay my rent and validate the work that fulfills me by shopping at 5/9. Get vaccinated, and stay safe!