"Whatever you think you can do, or believe you can do, begin it, because action has magic, grace, and power in it." Goethe

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Friday’s Five

Watching my granddaughters step on a bathroom scale and saying to them:

Look at that perfect number and meaning it for always.

Telling them as we begin already talking about Santa that I can’t wait to tell him all the good things you do every day. We are creating a positive list here. I bet it fills a book.

Sharing a Lemon Chill with two toddlers as we sit on the kitchen floor. One spoon.

Hearing I love you for having a cardboard box available as a play house. Simple, people. Simple joys.

Red paint. It is a necessity. And it washes off.


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Sunday’s Song: Seven

Seven good things from the past few days:

a grandchild’s birthday

an art journaling workshop

a Don Williams song I’d never heard before

a solitary walk on a rainy day

a hug from an old friend

a found poem

a cardinal returning

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Sunday’s Song: Springtimes and Sunsets and Startovers

Fourth Sunday of Lent.

Yeah, that Lenten art book I bought with such good intentions? Unread.

The Scripture study I started a couple of Saturdays ago? Haven’t made it back.

Thinking a lot about seasons and cycles and how some things never change.

Decided to start reading through some old journals to help with a project I am working on.

Realized there in black and white that my themes stay constant.

Same ole songs, day in and out.

Was almost discouraged by that. The same things I hope to get better at or stop doing or start doing are there from months, even years ago. Sigh.

Decided to sit and sew for a little while. Let the silence still my mind.

Allowed the mindful repetition of threads turning into rows of pattern remind me that row after row, line after line, a story still takes shape.

Sometimes there are starts and stops and sidesteps. Sometimes there are repetitions.

Maybe there is a break in pattern and something interesting is sewn in. A contrast. Different color. Unique stitch.

Sometimes a mistake creeps in.

But like spring cycles back with its same ole flowers and crickets and fireflies, we still welcome it. We don’t expect something new from it…not really. We just want spring to be spring.

And those sunsets that mark the end of each day…sometimes they seem closer, brighter, dearer. Maybe it is not the sun, maybe it is the viewer.

So. Take stock of your life from time to time, but don’t look back too long.

See what there still is to do…so much!

And just begin again. And again. Until you realize all the same old words have shaped themselves into the story you want them to be.

Start again…

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Open Your Eyes: A Lenten Journey 4/12/17 (Wednesday)

Holy Week.

Today I marvel at the people I encountered.

Book lovers like me at a local college event. Take all the books you want. Help us out here. My kind of place! I loaded up on books that I’ll have fun repurposing into art journals. I found some good reads in the stacks as well. And it was so beautiful this morning…a perfect temperature and light breeze among the trees as readers like myself took our time browsing.

A knitting friend I’ve known for about three years. We meet weekly at s local  yarn shop to laugh and create and enjoy our retired moments of freedom to do things we like. The shop owners have adjusted their summer hours, but they kept our time open. I’m pretty sure  they did that for us. 🙂 

A teacher friend I’ve known for several years. We are both teaching night classes at the same college, and we generally get to visit for a few minutes before class. She watched my latest grand baby video. I got to see some family pictures of her dad and a special gift he made for her recently. We both recognize the preciousness of shared moments like this: moments we celebrate the happinesses of life with others.

My W night college Comp  class. They were full of energy and conversation tonight. It is fulfilling to see 22 adults from all walks of life interact and laugh and learn together. I always leave smiling.

The pizza maker. Thanks for that pick up window ready-to-go dinner. 

Ordinary encounters with everyday people. Strangers and familiar folks come in and out of our lives every day. 

Beautiful beings. We get to be part of that network of humanity. We get to choose to be beautiful. What a gift. 

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Open Your Eyes: A Lenten Journey 4/11/17 (Tuesday)

Holy Week.

Today, a gift of a goldfinch. The first I have ever seen here. Ever. I count it as a beautiful  Holy Week reward. Beauty of creation. 

So many birds have come lately, and this thought continues to come to mind: 

The things we feed will come.

Isn’t that true of all aspects of life? 

Spend a  moment thinking about what you want. Then feed that thought with action.

This…a few handfuls of birdseed each week. 

A beautiful reward.

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Open Your Eyes: A Lenten Journey 4/10/17 (Monday)

Holy Week.

What do those words mean to you? Will you live differently this week? More mindfully? 

Or, will this week be yet another week in your life that is no different than the one before it? 

I look at this week as kind of a “last call” before the big event of Easter. Time to get the inside and outside ready, so to speak.

My Lenten plans are written in a notebook. I’ll review them tonight. I might wince at how fast the time went, how much I still want to do. I might sigh at repeated themes: how hard it is to follow plans sometimes.

Yesterday, I was supposed to meet my son and his family for early mass. I slept right through the alarms. (Yes, plural.)

I went to a later mass at another church in my town.  I was still late to that one. (See something I need to work on? I know.) 

Anyway, I sat in a back pew and watched a little girl a few seats away making crosses from palms. I was making one, too. It’s kind of a tradition, one that brings to mind my daughter. A special memory.

I listened to the Passion as I braided my cross. I recalled previous Palm Sundays when I felt ashamed to participate in reading the part of the play where the crowd says Crucify him. Crucify him. 

From an early age, I remember feeling truly sad that this would be my line. I listened to the congregation read in unison, but it was a moment of realization for me–I could feel the result of those words in my soul. Some years, I only mouthed the words. Some years, I didn’t speak them at all.

Yesterday was like that. I sat and listened and pictured the scene and realized that each year God reminds me in this tangible way of how much He gave up for me, for us. 

Later in the mass, I stepped into the vestibule and brought in a couple more palms and handed one to the child. She had a pile of crosses, but had run out of palms. At the end of mass, she handed me one of her creations with a hug. Here, ma’am. I made this one for you. 
I left the palms in the car until today. They’ve already changed so much…just in one day, the drying process has started. The green is already faded significantly. These palm frond crosses are a visible reminder of how much we change from day to day. At some point in the coming year, they may become brittle and even break. But next year, there will be fresh green ones again. And the scene will repeat until the day comes when we don’t have to wait anymore for Christ to return.

I’m praying for us all this Holy Week. 

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Open Your Eyes: A Lenten Journey 4/6/17 (Thursday) 

A favorite. 

I ran across this verse today as I was cutting words from magazines for a found poetry activity. 

Sweet moment. 

I hope you are enjoying sweet moments along your Lenten journey, too.