The empty nest isn't filled with plastic Easter grass. I've been limiting myself to one foil-wrapped chocolate egg or Hershey's Miniature a day. Each time I open the candy, I remember a short story I read forty years ago. I believe it was part of a teen writing competition in Seventeen magazine. The details are very hazy, but the story involved a girl saving bits of colored foil and other shiny wrappings to create an Orthodox Christian icon for some very selfless purpose.
By junior high I was already saving papers and magazine images. I loved special boxes and folded art like the triptych in the story. After reading it, I wondered each time I opened a stick of Wrigley's gum if I should save the foil. If I created an art work out of Juicy Fruit wrappers and Hershey bar foil, would I find spiritual answers like the girl in the story?
In a funny way, I did slowly discover spiritual answers from saving paper, although I never created a folding foil gum wrapper triptych. Creating art is a channel to spirituality. Protecting nature by recycling is another. Being mindful in choosing what I save and what I discard are components of both channels. In some ways the discipline of maintaining and adding to this blog is another channel. I have a great feeling of peace whenever I manage to take my saved memories and my mindful observations to create a story someone may appreciate.
© 2007 Nancy L. Ruder