idle hands are the devil’s playground

So, ten years ago already– how can it be that long? but it was– I went through a very hard period, and I took up a bit of origami. When I feel paralyzed, and overwhelmed, I find that making something helps keep me engaged, and feeling effective, if only in a small way.

Of course, if I’d known the rest of my life was going to be a “hard period,” I would probably have just laid on the couch.

Anyway, irrelevant. This is a tiny tribute post for the feast of St. Clare, so no matter what it says in the date, that’s when I started writing it. A woman full of love and single-minded courage, who would never have laid on a couch, unless it was, you know, upholstered with nails.

ANYWAY, also irrelevant. I got most of my origami ideas off of HGTV, which at that time had one great craft show after another, instead of twenty-four hour programming about rich people buying houses. Does anyone actually watch that stuff? I find it hard to imagine anyone watching that stuff, even rich people buying houses.

Honestly, I’m having a really hard time focusing.

I never became particularly accomplished at origami, but I learned a bit, and I can make a little go a long way. Just ask the twelve chords I know on the guitar. Most of what I made is gone now, but there are quite a few items I remember fondly, including Saint-In-A-Box. These were about a half by a quarter inch, with inlaid saint pictures, and, well, I thought they were awesome.

Everything I made was stamped with the mark of my fake company, “Fragments,” because they were all made of leftover/throwaway materials. Which were gathered up so that none would be lost. Get it?

It was very symbolic.

Among the few things I have left are a number of nun cards, which were not the kind of thing I usually made, but one day I was looking through a library book of origami projects, and I found an origami nun. This was just too good to pass up. There was also an origami Christ On The Mount Of Olives, but that had like 128 steps, if I recall, and was way out of my league. The nun had eleven steps; that i could manage.

I’m very fond of them, but I don’t have a lot of opportunities to send them out. They’re not very professional-looking either, as they were made out of stray index cards, with handmade envelopes to match made out of manilla scraps. They’re bristling with evangelical poverty and mindful use. I’m the only one who gets them– go figure.

So they sit on my shelf, and I don’t think of them, until one day, ten years later THIS PICTURE comes across… my Tumblr? I can’t remember. But I recognize it instantly, because that is exactly what I was going for.


They also come in Dominican and Benedictine.


Suspend your disbelief a little. If they’re not totally accurate, it’s the best I could do with eleven steps and some pieces of typing paper. I happen to love them, and now they’re getting their day in the sun.

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