Eat. Pie. Love.

Tara Royer Steele grew up working with pie. She came to realize that God can use something as small as pie to build relationships and further his kingdom. Join her October 3 to learn more — and make pie!

There’s a well known Zen koan that says, “Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.” We have to do the work, and we have to keep doing the work — in every area of our lives, no matter how enlightened, or exalted, or exceptional we may become. Like any koan worth its salt, it suggests other things, too: Maybe enlightenment is the chopping of the wood and the carrying of the water. Maybe doing the work is what enlightenment’s all about.

Maybe instead of trying to solve all the problems of the world, or telling everyone else how to solve them, or crumbling into an anxious heap because there are so many problems, we should just do the work that’s in front of us. Maybe the work is as easy as making pie.

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of going to Royer’s Round Top Cafe or Royer’s Pie Haven in Round Top, Texas, you know that they’ve done the work when it comes to pie. And you know that enjoying the fruits of their labor is a real pleasure.

Royer’s is a family company, and Tara Royer Steele grew up working with pie. In doing the work, she came to realize that God can use something as small as pie to build relationships and further his kingdom. She set out to share that message as widely as possible, and now she’s written a book: Eat. Pie. Love: 52 devotions to satisfy your mind, body, and soul.

On Saturday, October 3, from 10 to 11:30 a.m., Tara is going to share her insights about pie, life, and God’s love (and how they criss-cross like a perfectly woven crust) with the Cathedral. Sign up by September 30, and she’ll provide a list of ingredients to make a sweet & salty pie, a copy of her devotional, a journal, and a mug for the coffee you’ll want to drink with the delicious pie she’ll teach you how to make. The cost is just $45, and it promises to be a very satisfying morning of cooking and connecting.

So, for just one morning, put the newspaper aside and stop trying to make it all better. Join Tara, and just do the work: Eat. Pie. Love. There’s meaning in all three, and she’ll show you how they intersect in a very tasty, soul-filling way. Before enlightenment, Eat. Pie. Love; after enlightenment, Eat. Pie. Love.

To register for Eat. Pie. Love: A Virtual Women’s Event, click here.

I am more modest now, but I still think that one of the pleasantest of all emotions is to know that I, I with my brain and my hands, have nourished my beloved few, that I have concocted a stew or a story, a rarity or a plain dish, to sustain them truly against the hungers of the world. 
― M.F.K. Fisher

Unbound Delight

Houston Book Artist Lee Steiner presents at Christ Church Cathedral September 8 and 15

If you’re a hard-core, content-only Kindle reader, you may want to skip this. But if you’ve ever peeked under the jacket of a book to see how it was bound, admired a foil-stamped embossed title, or wondered what a frontispiece is, we’ve got something for you. If a stack of dusty old books doesn’t send you into Marie Kondo fits but, rather, whets your desire to read and sends you running for a cup of tea, please join us for some hands-on book lovers’ delight.

We’re excited to welcome Lee Steiner of Domestic Papers to the Cathedral for two consecutive Sunday evening workshops. Lee teaches bookbinding at local museums and at her East End studio. She grew up in a creative family of handmakers and antique collectors who were always on the hunt for inspiration. The name of her studio reflects her love of everything paper and of traveling to faraway places in search of unique materials for her art. Her travel always holds the promise of returning home to domestic bliss, where she turns her treasures into custom map-covered travel journals, sketchbooks from vintage books, and one-of-a kind writing journals.

On September 8, she will teach us how to understand a book’s true value. We know not to judge a book by its cover, but what factors do go into determining its worth? Do we value a book the same way others do? Lee will explain the elements that give books value in our lives—monetary, cultural, and personal—and show examples of books that may be worth a fortune to one person but are considered trash by another. She will provide a fresh appreciation of the treasures that lie on our own bookshelves, and she will share how she finds books for her antiquarian bookstore and creates beautiful journals and art from books that may initially seem worthless.

Then on September 15, she will lead us in a hands-on workshop to make a longstitch travel journal, a process that can be used to create journals of many sizes and functions. The longstitch binding allows the wide spine to lay flat for easy sketching and writing and creates plenty of room to add photos, maps, and mementos. She will provide all the materials—from paper to awls to a wide variety of map covers—and guide the group through each step. At the end of the evening you’ll have a beautiful, handmade journal to document your next adventure or to give to a friend as a bon voyage gift.

Yes, we know books are magical. But when did you last take time to really consider the vessels that hold the stories? A well-designed book furthers the impact of the words that lie between the covers. Exploring the book arts with Lee will allow you to look at your library with inspired new eyes, unleash your inner book-binder, and provide you some unbound bookish fun.

Valuing Vintage Volumes
Sunday, September 8
Jeffers Room, Latham Hall. 6:15 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Creating Longstitch Journals
Sunday, September 15
Jeffers Room, Latham Hall. 6:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

(Materials are included for the journal workshop so registration is limited. Please email lchambers@christchurchcathedral.org to register or get more information about either workshop.)

And please join us before the workshops for The Well, a contemplative Celtic Eucharist in the Cathedral at 5 p.m., and for tea and toast in Latham Hall at 5:45 p.m!

The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.
~Carl Jung