Savoring August…

Savoring August…

After almost thirty years in New England, I recently realized that although I am a fan of both October and May, it is August that has my heart. From beginning to end, August fills my soul. This year, I have enjoyed each of the 31 days, rolling them around in my mind like penny candy. Although it is my nature to jump ahead, this summer I’ve lingered over the golden light of August and allowed my senses to fully attend to sights, sounds, and delights of late summer. Continue reading “Savoring August…”

Grandma’s china…

Grandma’s china…

As these things go, my grandma’s china came to me. My mom packed it up in boxes and shipped it across the country a long time ago. The first Christmas after it arrived, I carefully cleaned it and set the table for holiday dinner. Later, I told my mom how special it was to use the china, but couldn’t get over how small the plates were. We chuckled about how serving sizes have changed over time. Continue reading “Grandma’s china…”

Garden musings…

Garden musings…

In our first home, I planted sunflowers, marigolds, radishes, and sweet peas, and spent long days in the dirt, listening to the children play in the back yard. I weathered black flies, mosquitos, and dirty fingernails and returned to the house better after my time working in the dirt. Over the years, I’ve planted herb gardens, lettuce, and fresh veggies just steps from my kitchen. I’ve also tended flower beds with lush plantings of perennials and hardy shrubs. There is something about the process of bending low, smelling the earth, and touching it with my hands that is both soothing and satisfying. Every spring, I decide again to be a gardener. Continue reading “Garden musings…”

Birthday girl…

Birthday girl…

A couple weeks ago, my family pulled off an epic surprise. To be honest, I didn’t believe they had it in them. We aren’t that good at surprises, and I particularly hate being surprised, so it hasn’t been something we’ve practiced over the years. But, they pulled off a beautiful party and gathered so many of my favorite people. I was totally blown away by the love and attention poured out that night. Continue reading “Birthday girl…”

Making connections…

Making connections…

I am a connector. There is nothing I enjoy more than bringing people together. I do that around my dinner table, through small groups, scheduled meals, and impromptu gatherings. For many years, the main way I accomplish this has been through weekly gathering. We’ve opened our home for the better part of a couple decades to small groups of people who make room for each other and prioritize connection through a weekly meeting. These small groups weren’t our idea, we first were gathered up in a group that opened up the world to us as a young family. We found that we weren’t alone. We found that behind the Sunday morning smile, other families struggled to figure it out too. We found company for the fun days and friends for the hard ones. We remain deeply connected to many of the people who have done life with us through these life-giving groups. Continue reading “Making connections…”

Grandbabies…

Grandbabies…

When I was a baby, my dad was stationed on an aircraft carrier somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. My mom moved home, to my grandparent’s house for support. I was the first one, and I was spoiled rotten… or so they’ve told me since I was old enough to understand. My mom tells me that my grandpa Malone hated to hear my cry, so she would lay me down to sleep and when I stopped crying, she assumed I fell asleep. Instead, my grandfather would sneak into my room, scoop me up and take me downstairs to rock me. Maybe, I was a little spoiled! My uncle tells me that Grandpa would take me to the local IGA and tell everyone how wonderful I was. I don’t remember any of this, but I have always been pretty sure that my grandparents thought the world of me. Continue reading “Grandbabies…”

What made life better in October?

What made life better in October?

My grandson- Teddy is the delight of my heart. His grin in the mornings make my heart sing and that wicked little look he gives me from across the room when he knows I will join him in mischief is delightful. This child is a wonder every day, but we recently took him to the apple farm where he picked his first apple, crawled around in the pumpkins, and enjoyed 2 new delicious treats. He destroyed an apple cider donut with two hands nom-nom-noming with gusto, but the look he gave me when I slipped a bit of maple floss (cotton candy) between his lips was priceless. I love watching the wonder of the world unfold from his perspective. It reminds me to slow down, pay attention, and enjoy the sweet bits. Continue reading “What made life better in October?”

A Central Organizing Principle…

A Central Organizing Principle…

“I’ve figured it out,” I declared to Keith. “I know what I need.” He raised an eyebrow at me. It had been months since the kids had left home. I was still rattling around our big old house. Sometimes, I felt like I could still hear their voices echoing off the walls. After they all left in a rush, I had sat quietly. Feeling the sadness, fearing the end. I was listless and avoided many of the things I had once poured myself out for. Evenings when Keith worked, I poured a glass of wine and retreated to my “studio,” which was newly decorated to finally declare it my own. There, I listened to audio books and knitted. Continue reading “A Central Organizing Principle…”

The road ahead…

The road ahead…

It’s been 17 years since Mom called to tell us the news. Dad had prostate cancer. It was already metastasized. The doctor said six months to two years. The world spun a little slower that day. There were treatments. Dad responded to these treatments in amazing ways. We prayed for him and the cancer’s growth slowed. Every time there was an uptick in his numbers, there was a new treatment plan. Radiation, hormone therapy, and new drugs that promised time. He has been a true miracle. Continue reading “The road ahead…”