Savoir-faire was my Word this year. Or perhaps I should say that it is my word, but maybe not. Today I went back to in-person church, and felt inept.

I was announcing the passing of the peace, and that went fine. I sang reasonable well in choir and was able to participate in Sunday school. But I felt off balance and frail, even. I wasn’t sure about climbing stairs and worried about walking from one place to another steadily.

True, I was wearing boots, but just ankle boots. I didn’t actually have any trouble walking.

I didn’t have any trouble doing anything, in fact, but I felt uncertain.

So maybe I need to work on balance, or exercise more in general. I sit still too much.

Or maybe this is just a strange thing I’ve developed during the pandemic, and I need to get over it. I have always been confident in my body. I was a dancer in my youth, and have never felt uncoordinated or clumsy. Never self-conscious, really. And I was dressed like a grownup. I badly need a haircut, certainly, but I shouldn’t have felt uncomfortable in church.

Now, nobody should feel uncomfortable in church based on clothing. In our Sunday school reading this morning we were reminded that Cato said, “There is great care about dress, but great carelessness about virtue.”

But I also remember a lady saying that we should make an effort who we go into the house of God.

I often have tension between my desire to be one of those ladies –like my own grandmothers — who show their savior faire in good grooming and neat self-presentation, and my natural messiness.

My house, too, shows that natural messiness. I don’t like tidying it, but I know that disorder is stressful. Embarrassing, too, when people come over.

The pandemic has caused a lot of us to be untidy, but people come over now. We leave our homes sometimes, too, even me.

But do we like ourselves as much when we’re frowsty and our homes are squalid? Not really.

On the HGP, we’re moving on to the kitchen. We continue with our holiday prep, working on our handmade gifts, making goodies for the freezer, buying and wrapping gifts, and adding items from the master shopping list.

Then we thoroughly clean the kitchen, emptying and tidying every cabinet, drawer, closet, and cupboard.

This is a big job.

Check out the “before” picture below.

And this one:

I got that corner cleaned, and a pot of Chicken Marengo on the stove. Not bad for Sunday, right?

I made a yogurt cake with blueberries, too.

At home, I don’t feel inept. I guess the pandemic may have allowed my agoraphobia to intensify. That’s more likely than my being unable to walk confidently in boots.