Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday Faves

close encounter of the squirrely kind

* Quote of the Week: "Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity." ~ Simone Weil

* Blogspiration: Simply Breakfast by Jennifer Causey - no longer updated, but still inspirational

* Song of the Week: Let It Be Jesus by Christy Nockels

* Bookish Thoughts: images by Reinier Gerritsen

* Film of the Week: Ballet Portraits in Motion by Sue Bryce

* Images of the Week: a collection of frozen water by Bored Panda

* To Make You Smile: a dog who smiles back, Gluta by Miss Moss

* PINspiration: Eekhooms, curated by Ran

* This Made Me Tear Up: We can all do so much more, pay it forward

* In Case You Missed It:  Color

Happy weekend, friends.  

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

before the wedding

my niece, before the wedding
A single photo capturing a simple moment.  
A reminder to slow down our always busy lives and to savor this moment. 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Personal joys, part one

I recently wrote about the best part of 2014.  I wrote about the way that God turns brokenness into joy and sadness into laughter.  But, He does more than that.  He fills each day with moments of joy as I trust in Him.  So, here's more of the good stuff.

2014 in review

 Sloane has found her "thing."  
She's a swimmer. 

 I continue to enjoy art everywhere I find it.  
And, I am finding the courage to ask to photograph strangers. 

 We attended a wedding where the bride and groom's love reminded me 
so much of Jeffrey and I, that I cried.  And smiled and smiled. 

 We were able to see my brother, sister-in-law, and nieces twice this year.

 We spent a lot of time in the woods, walking, and talking, and laughing.

We had lots of happy surprises, like the time we caught the Clydesdales in Atlanta. 

What about you?  Please tell me about a happy surprise you enjoyed last year.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday Morning Poetry

The night is darkening round me,
The wild winds coldly blow,
But a tyrant spell has bound me
And I cannot, cannot go.
The giant trees are bending
Their bare boughs weighed with snow,
And the storm is fast descending
And yet I cannot go.
Clouds beyond clouds above me,
Wastes beyond wastes below;
But nothing drear can move me;
I will not, cannot go.
~ author unknown, shared by Edward Hirsch

Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday Faves

I find I always sing that hymn when I visit the ocean.

* Quote of the Week: "Nothing will work unless you do." ~ Maya Angelou

* Blogspiration: Vintage Books My Kids Love

* Song of the Week: From The Day by I am They

* Images of the Week: International Hibernation photographer, Nikki

* To Make You Grin: 3D Faces in the snow

* In Case You Missed It: In a Word

* Pretty Amazing: How to Mine Your 2015 For Unexpected Diamonds

* PINspiration: A Kingdom of Frost, curated by Brenna H.

* Some Things I Love: going back to school after unexpected snow days, when Jeffrey brings home surprise roses, Oreos, my students, dinner out with girlfriends, piles of books from the library, Youtube, peanutbutter cups, non-greasy lotion, audiobooks, watching the sunrise as we drive to school

Happy weekend, friends.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

reflections on 2014

Sloane, my biggest blessing

If you've been my blog friend for a while you know that I sometimes share unedited entries from my paper journal.  I call these entries SOOJ, as in, straight out of the journal.  This is one such entry.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014@ home on the couch with Sloane
When I look back over 2014, I can't remember a single really bad day.  There wasn't a single day when I didn't go to bed grateful and satisfied.  There wasn't a morning that I didn't wake up joyful and grateful.  That's what living in Christ does.  Because, when I think back over the year, there was nothing exceptionally good about it.  We had a hard, long winter that made the school year extend so long that we had a terribly short summer.  That makes for a rough new school year.  Plus, we not only didn't get to travel, but we had to spend all our saved vacation money on Jeffrey's knee surgery.  And we still owe $3,000.  UGH!  I could go on and on with a list of trials from 2014, but that's not my point.  My point is that in the midst of all these trials and struggles, when my heart was breaking at the disappointment about our new home, as our finances took hit after hit, each day was a good day.  Each day I went to sleep grateful and woke up satisfied. That is God at work in our lives.  He takes our fragile, silly, messed up world and makes beautiful things out of the broken pieces.   
That's His grace.  
That's my King.   

Monday, February 16, 2015


I've been thinking a lot about this place and about blogs in general.  I've been sad to watch more and more of my friends leave their spaces.  Facebook just isn't enough for me.  It's not real enough or true enough.  Instead, it's just easy enough.  You know?  

I am saddened by the way that Pinterest has changed blogging.  Oh, you know I love Pinterest.  But, it feels as though blogging has mostly become a business platform for young creatives.  Don't misunderstand, I love their creativity as much as anyone.  But, I don't want to give my posts Pinterest-worthy titles and worry about RSS feeds.  I don't want a business, I want a community. 

It feels as though I've lost my tribe.  Like we all changed while I wasn't looking and have gone on to other more tangible pursuits and friendships.  It feels like we've been sucked into the swirling madness of modern life.  We all have so much to do, so many job and family responsibilities.  If we show up at all, our visits are short and on the surface.  I miss the community I found here.

In about two weeks it will be my blog's seventh anniversary.  I've been hanging on to this place in my heart, but barely showing up to the page.  I've been wanting to say things, heart things, and then settling for sharing others' work instead.  I've been missing old friends and not reaching out to make new ones.  I've been wondering if I should close down this fireside.  I've been wondering where all my like-minded friends have gone.

I've been sad.  Grieving, I guess, for lost friends, lost connections.  And wondering what to do.   I'm not sure yet.  But, say hello, won't you?  I'm feeling a bit lonely.

Oldies, but Goodies