Masha talked today about how lack of order and beauty in her home discourages her from creating lovely meals.  I'm glad to know I'm not the only one affected that way.  This easy and delicious ciabatta bread looks (I think?) picture perfect here, but back up a little and you'll see the whole scenario:

Is it whimsical and childish to want to make everyday living an art?  People who are close to me often teased me in the past of living in a dream world; I'll give them their fair shake.  It's true that attempting a pretty, poetic lifestyle ordered toward the holy won't make everything suddenly storybook perfect.  But, I think, it does make one a better student of sainthood.

How does this lumpy, smushy dough become a dry, warm, chewy thing, just by adding a healthy amount of heat?  If you've never attempted to bake your own bread, you might have never thought about this or noticed it.  I think that's what I aim to do, when I prattle about a Welsh cottage decked in wildflowers and sustained by the wool of sheep.  I want to be the kind of person who notices things.

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."--Thoreau



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