Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Sunday feeling

I'm not religious, but I am a bit of a fanatic about Sunday.
That's probably a leftover reaction from all of the Sundays in
my childhood when we were forced to dress up
in extremely uncomfortable clothes, hats and shoes, then
polished up to be trotted out at church as an example of all
that was wholesome, well raised and doing the right thing.

Art class portrait of a member's wife.
She had an aristocratic air -- a delight to paint

I liked the singing, loved the high airy ceilings in the churches
(we attended more than one, because we moved). But early
on my artistic attention deficit disorder was duly noted, and if
we were in a church with too much going on, showy architecture,
sculptures, elaborate gold or over dressed clerics, my parents let me
sit on the floor and colour so I wouldn't be sick. True.

My son, Christopher and his girlfriend, Megan
enjoying a relaxed Sunday breakfast

Long before my teenage life my father quit going, he didn't like being
forced to count the collection plates, and felt like a hypocrite. My
mother stopped going when I was a teenager, which was not that easy
as at that time all of her social life revolved around church.

Still the idea of Sunday as a unique day persists in my
current rituals, though they are very different from
our childhood routines.

#1 I like to sleep in and read, first the trivial sections of the
Saturday paper, then my novel, then a few magazine articles.
#2 I don't really get moving until I've had my second
#3 I loll. I reserve the day for as much relaxation as possible.
#4 I like to take a walk, or drive in the country
#5 I talk to my mother on the phone (a habit ingrained
no doubt from talking on the way to and from
#6 I like a superb dinner, and I don't want to be the
one making it. I can still see my father carving the
Sunday roast with great relish. A special cake or pie
would be waiting in the kitchen. We eat differently
now -- very little red meat, desert not an absolute,
but the feeling remains that Sunday dinner should
be more than packaged pizza.

Of course I'm a teacher, and Sunday like the six other
days of the week is for marking. Today it was essays, and
they gave my other reading material a pretty good run
for the money.

Having just finished the super dinner Steven prepared,
I feel so contented that I could happily call it a Sunday.
But I think I'll finish my marking, make my notes for
tomorrow, and do some of what passes for "colouring"
today -- paint, or draw.

Have a recognizing-the-hefty-depth-of-the-day day.


Anonymous said...

Hi Barbara, Sundays are good. The greatest difference I find when comparing the rest of the week to Sunday is the light. Seems the light is just a bit different on Sunday. I could tell ya stories about Sunday, my mother was a holy roller. :) ew

Barbara Muir said...

Now I wonder why the light is
different on Sunday. Is it because there's less traffic? Is it because
we see differently when we get more
sleep, or we don't have to work?

A holy roller eh?

Geez Louise.


Barbara Muir said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Barbara, I LOVE your post and your description of Sundays.
My childhood Sunday also included my father roasting an amazing cut of beef. He would read his Marxist newspapers and sit beside the stove at-the-ready for basting the roast.
There was no church in our house, but Sunday's were wonderful and calm and tasty.
I think you and eldon are right about the light....but also, it's when people are actually home to enjoy it in the daytime!
Flora xo

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Flora,

In my case my father barely knew how
to make a sandwich, so he wasn't the cook. Steven is thank goodness.
My mother did all the rustling around in the kitchen, which had a swing door into the dining room in my childhood home. Somehow that made the delivery of the meal to the table seem important. I guess it was.

We sit at the kitchen table, and
meals are served from stove to
table, so it's a lot less formal,
and...usually a lot more fun.



Portrait Artist

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!