I've been meditating on what it means to create a sense of "sanctuary" in the home. As I said before, with a large family full of tiny children, it's not going to be a quiet, contemplative atmosphere. I don't even think I'd want that. I love the adventure and life that young children bring into a home, the unbridled creativity and humour.
No, if it's going to last, a sense of sanctuary has to be based in reality and it has to be durable. It has to leave room for people to be themselves. We need sanctuary the most when life is the most chaotic and difficult, when sanctuary is the most difficult to maintain.
I think the building blocks of sanctuary are these; nourishment for the soul, nourishment for the body, and of course, a strong connection to God, the sustaining hand that holds us through all of life's ups and downs. Healthy, delicious food shared with people we love, fresh air, rest, prayer, affection, creativity, beauty, selflessness, rhythm, routine and tradition are just a few good things that come to mind. Some of them, many of them, actually, are good for both body and soul.
With this in mind I have decided to start simply by working on cultivating beauty, nourishing my family with good healthy foods, getting outdoors for some fresh air every day, rain or shine, giving real time and attention to our creative endeavours and spending more time in prayer both for myself and with my family.