Today's guest blogger is Pam Smith, who is co-founder and executive director at the Addie Wyatt Center for Nonviolence Training in Chicago. She is a historian and genealogist and a long-time Chicago consultant for nonprofit organizations.
Pam served as a senior press aide to Barack Obama in his primary campaign for US Senate and to Jesse Jackson in his 1988 presidential bid. She teaches history at National Louis University and is coeditor of The Chicago Freedom Movement: Martin Luther King Jr. and Civil Rights Activism in the North.
Popular culture has surfaced some interesting ways that we can all infuse love in the everyday no matter our stage of life. Let's begin with the ubiquitous organizer, Marie Kondo. For Marie, the simple task of folding clothes is an almost sacred opportunity to pass along love.
“It’s important to convey love for your clothes from the palm of your hands,” she explained to a young couple.
Notes contained in small frames in rooms at a monastery-turned-spiritual retreat center in Virginia instruct departing visitors to prepare their room for the next guest, just as someone prepared the room for them. In so doing, those leaving should gather up linens from the hall closet and change bed sheets mindfully, praying for the healing of the next person to sleep in the room.
Likewise, Najmieh Batmanglij, a refugee from Iran referred to as the grande dame of Iranian cooking, uses her cooking as a way to connect with family and the land she left.
“I cook with all my being and I cook with love.”
Whether it is simple household chores or cooking, we can turn seemingly ordinary moments into deliberate acts of intentional creative energy.
How do you spread love in your daily life? Send us your comments and we’ll share them with others.
To experience Najmieh Batmanglij’s expression of love made in celebration of the Iranian New Year, consider giving the below recipe for Yogurt and Shallot Dip a try.
She advises that dried Persian shallots (musir) are available in Iranian markets, and well worth the effort it might take to buy them. She thinks of them like truffles; they grow wild in the foothills of the Zagros Mountains and have to be found and dug out of the earth by dedicated artisans.
1 1/2 cups (135 g) dried musir (Persian shallots)
4 cups (960 g) plain yogurt
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 cup (85 g) shredded fresh mint, or 1 tablespoon dried mint
1 teaspoon crushed dried rose petals
1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves
Want to spread love to older adults this year? Consider being a guest chef for our residents at the Good Life Senior Residences Program!