To my three

To my babies,

On the eve of this election-

This is what I want to tell you.

I want to tell you that I love The Lord first. And I love your Daddy second. And then I love you with all of my heart.

While that sounds contradictory to some, it is actually what makes loving you with all of my heart possible.

When I love and obey Jesus, I can love you best. When I love and respect your Daddy, I can love you best.

It’s about the order of things.

And, Babies, this world is broken and out of order.

Since that bite of fruit, it has been so.

But I want you to know it is not how it was meant to be.

It is not how it is meant to be.

You know when you giggle and cuddle up on screen porch while the thunder claps and you can hear the rain pour down through the leaves and it makes you feel alive?

That is a glimpse.

You know when you saw your baby brother for the first time and you felt pure love?

That is a glimpse.

You know when you look at the stars and see the moon full and find the Milky Way while the loons call on the lake?

That’s it.

You know when you play the guitar and you draw an eagle in a tree and you run fast like the wind?

There it is.

You know how you read about the workings of the human body and the layers of the atmosphere and vastness of the oceans?

There’s another glimpse.

He made those things! He made those sights and sounds and feelings and experiences for YOU to enjoy and so you would delight in HIM.

Glimpses of Glory.

That’s what we have right now.

And, I know what you are hearing and seeing right now.

and it’s not that.

I know you hear the news even though we don’t watch it on tv.

I know you hear it in songs that break down true love.

I know you see it on the flyers that force their way to our mailbox.

I know you feel the unspoken current of illness and fatigue and anxiety that pervades the community.

I know you watch stress in the expressions on my face.

I know you sense the change of the world right now.

And I want you to know what is True.

I want you to know what is Real.

The True things are clear.

They are not- and cannot be ultimately muddied in the media. If you read it on the internet, it doesn’t mean it is true. If you feel it, sometimes even that isn’t true. If someone in leadership over you tells you something is true; there is a possibility it is not.

The True things stand.

The Truth stands.

And that is what I want to tell you today. In this world, things are changing so fast that I cannot keep up. But I want to tell you what I hold on to. I want to teach you more about what you can hold on to.

These things.

Do these things.

Love The Lord your God with all of your heart.

Love The Lord your God with all of your mind.

Love The Lord your God with all of your strength.

And, love your neighbor as yourself.

To my three little ones- know this:

There is no one beside Him.

He is the Truth that stands.

When our world is rocking beneath our feet,

He is the Truth that stands.

And today, and going forward, more than ever-

I want to teach you to lean on that Truth.

This is my hope and promise to you.

His Word stands when the ground is shifting.

His Word stands when chaos abounds.

His Word stands because it is TRUE.

I will walk with you as long as The Lord allows me to. I promise you today that I will teach you what is REAL and TRUE. Every day that I am able.

Hold on to the Glimpses of Glory.

Be encouraged. It is but a shadow of what is to come!

Go swimming. Laugh. Howl at the moon. Ride your four-wheeler. Play Star Wars. Sing a song. Read a magazine. Lay in the hammock. Soak in the sun glistening on the water. Feel the warmth of your cozy blanket. Talk to your friends. Notice how the sunset looks different every day. Hear the birds in the Springtime.

Be diligent.

Stand on Truth.

Love The Lord.

Love your neighbor.

Be all He made you to be.

Fight the good fight.

I love you. Your daddy loves you. Jesus loves you even more.

This is my song for you.

When I look above and the black and white warbler trills high in the birches, that is my song for you.

When the waves ripple and retreat over rocks on a Maine lakeshore, that is my song for you.

When the snowflakes fall and I can hear them over the silence, that is my song for you.

When my paddle swirls and drips back into the stream, that is my song for you.

When a chainsaw buzzes through hardwood on a late Summer day, that is my song for you.

When James Taylor Showers People He Loves with Love, that is my song for you.

When our campfire crackles over a starry sky, that is my song for you.

When leaves crunch underfoot in October and I’m in the woods, that is my song for you.

When I share the scientific name of Winterberry with your grandkids, that is my song for you.

When I look at my husband and know the father he is, partly because he loved you too, that is my song for you.

When my garden grows your flowers, that is my song for you.

When I make sure my children hear I Love You everyday, that is my song for you.

When I settled in to my dream to be a teacher and you already knew I was, that is my song for you.

When my love is fierce and my words are few, that is my song for you.

When my Scrabble tiles make 7, that is my song for you.

When I say something dry and smart that you’ve already said, that is my song for you.

When my heart bleeds tears into my days, Daddy, that is my song for you.

Your strength is your song to me.

Your wisdom is your song to me.

Your perseverance is your song to me.

Your gentle words of encouragement is your song to me.

Sweetie written on paper folded carefully in my treasure boxes is your song to me.

A life of learning is your song to me.

Conversation before it was too late is your song to me.

Telling me to work hard at my marriage is your song to me.

The littlest one whose expressions remind me of yours, is your song to me.

The freedom you told me you trusted me in, is your song to me.

The discipline you spoke without words, is your song to me.

Asking all the right questions when things weren’t right at all, is your song to me.

The last time you squeezed my hand, is your song to me.

Tonight, Daddy, I miss your singing.

But, with my whole heart:

I promise I will remember your song.

honey and home


I stir honey in my coffee sometimes. Now, maybe most of the time. With the big spoon clink clink in the big mug from your house. The honey is yours. The mug is yours. The bees aren’t yours now and neither is the house.

I get that paragraph finished and I don’t want to write anymore.

But your honey is almost gone. So I wrestle with that. Do I keep the jar with what’s left or do I eat the honey. After that last scrape on the glass- no more honey.

Do you remember the sun-white corner of our yard by the hawthorn where the bees busied? How you were covered white and the hives were piled white and sumac plumed to calm them and how you made us stay away til you were done?

And we would wait. On the shade of the front porch where the concrete was cold next to the azaleas.

You were down there humming James Taylor looking for a queen and watching them drone on to sweetness.

And soon, we would see you then, coming up the hill with something glistening in your hand and you’d take your knife from your pocket and cut it equal and our hands and tongues would drip gold.

I remember that.

Sometimes they would swarm and we’d drive up and down the road to find them at the right height in the right tree and you’d always find them and bring them home. That was always amazing to me. How you’d take us along at an easy pace, identifying trees and wildflowers and birds while we looked for your honeybees.

I think about it. Often.

But not as much as I want to.

I saw you by chat last night. You were in a sleepy shell and you don’t know faces by screens.

Every time. I slip to survival thinking this is the time. When your face is blank and you don’t know you taught me to ride a bike.

You probably don’t know you taught me to ride a bike.

But you did. Faithfully. Like a dad does. I was half way to the Osmun’s house before I realized you weren’t holding the back of the seat this time. And there was wind in my hair. And there you were in the middle of the road by the swamp where the Spring peepers chorused- back there hearty- smile waving at me. I crashed looking at you, but you ran and picked me up.

You knew me last night. You said, “Girlllllll” and you smiled that I love you smile that grounds me. I’ll take it. A million times over. I’ll take it.

Dad, the world’s a mess and I miss you.

By now, there would be messages on my phone.

Hey, Kid. It’s your Dad speakin’. Just wanted to check in and see how you all were doing. Nothing much going on here- well, except for hearing about about the virus. But we are here in the woods and I don’t want to go anywhere anyway. Have everything I need right here. Bees are doing good. Anna and I took a walk to the Pond yesterday. George and Val came for dinner and we talked about camping this Summer. Life is good. You got your health, you got everything, Kid. I got it knocked. I want you to know how much I love you and say hi to Pete. He’s a good man. And those kids. Tell them Pappy loves them. I love you, Sweetie. Give me a call sometime- let me know how you’re doing. Be careful. Talk to you soon.

Like that.

Everytime. Like that.

I wish I hadn’t deleted them. I’d give anything.

Because sometimes I think I wander without you.

I saw you in November for your birthday. You, our family, my family. Celebrating you. You didn’t like the candles. We ate your chili. Your cornbread. Pies and not cake, of course. The day was perfect with memories and laughing and visiting, but I missed you there.

Later that night, I was at the table. Writing. You came and sat near me. I wrote on the paper.

I LOVE YOU. And I pushed the paper to you. And I kissed your cheek.

You took the paper and the pen. You couldn’t write anything. You tried.

You looked at me and you said:


And you hugged me.

Your hugs. They are the same.

And they bring me home.

I think that’s why. I think that’s why I use the bigger spoon instead of the teaspoon stirring the honey. I think that’s why I turn the spoon over and leave it on the jar lid waiting for the second cup.

Why I hit the side of the mug to make a noise and not just stir the middle. Why my first sip happens standing at the counter. Why I look out the window at the Woods before I leave the kitchen.

It’s like home to me.

I’m going to savor the honey, Dad. And on a morning soon, I’m going to finish the last spoonful.

And when I do, I’ll remember it.

For both of us.

For my Gramma : my sunshine


written for the day we celebrated her :::

The last real heart visit I had with my Gramma was a little more than a month ago. I knew that it was the last one. In my heart. She was wrapped cozy in bed and scolded me for fidgeting with the blankets and looked at me with what was left of the spunky sparkle in her blue eyes. She wanted to know if we’d been fishing yet and where were the kids and have I talked to Brodie and how dare I leave Maeryn at the house for an hour by herself and I suppose she’s old enough now and what was the weather like outside and how was church and just what is your mother and Dayle talking about out there in the living room and yes, I love you.

I can’t recall here for every one of you what she is to you. I can only tell you what she is to me and then hope that a little piece of that might ring true for you, as well. I struggled with this because I thought I must tell her story from the beginning to now- that I must encapsulate and crystallize her charmed childhood on the canal iceskating and swimming, her hardworking parents and brothers and sisters, her intelligence and beauty, her love for lakes and snow and feeding the birds and playing cards. The way she was stubborn and diligent, the way she was tender and truthful, the way she was unique and poised. How she pushed through 95 years of the most amazing changes and advances in history and technology and life that our world has seen to date. How she married a man she loved, raised a family and saw birth and building up and burning down and growth from ashes and and death and plenty and need. I can’t tell you about 95 years, although I want to, but I can tell you about 95 years of experience that was tightly woven in the gnarled and perfect hand that I held carefully on that last day we visited.

I can, though, tell you about my Gramma.

I can tell you that she made the best chocolate chip cookies that crisped on the edges. I can tell you that she tucked me into bed like a cocoon and rubbed my nose to hers and prayed with me before I fell asleep. I can tell you that she took me outside and made me rake leaves and then she also made me jump in them. I can tell you that she instilled in me a love of words and let me win at Scrabble. I know that now. I can tell you that she loved her family with a fierce and strong- willed love that demanded family dinners around the table and the marking of milestones with celebrations and remembrances. I can tell you that she endured pain and marked it with grace. I can tell you that she insisted on my posture and taught me to dance- try to dance-  the Charleston.  I can tell you that she told me when I was wrong and that she allowed for mistakes. I can tell you I was there on the couch for the ‘86 Mets and man, that was a night. And I can tell you that she let me take her on snowmobile rides because she loved the wind on a warmer Winter day. I can tell you she didn’t mind that I wasn’t as athletic as her, but when she noticed that basketball wasn’t my game, she told me that the poem I had written she framed the other day.  I can tell you that seeing her stabilized me at a moment’s notice and that it’s true, there’s no place like Gramma’s house.  And I can tell you that she  breathed life into my hardest days and made me a root beer float and didn’t say a word.

And this was us- me and Gramma- the thing that replays in my mind. That one day I stopped in after my summer job and we had a long weekend ahead. July 4, I think. One of her favorites. And we were sitting on her deck and talking about how nice it would be to go to Maine. And that was the moment. We looked at one another at four o’clock in the afternoon and said- You wanna go? And that was that. Off we went. Me and Gramma and a road trip. Gramma’s station wagon, Charley Pride on the cassette tape. And yes, we had the windows rolled down and we got an ice cream cone for the road.

And that was my Gramma. The woman who lived a life well- lived. Adventure, pain, love, happiness, hardship, joy and finishing well.

The woman I could come to when I was crying, the woman I would look for in the crowd, the woman that cradled my babies with open arms and arthritic fingers, the woman that encouraged walking tall and playing on the floor. The woman who brought her family to Maine and in turn, gave us the gift of a place to love life, too.

Thinking of her makes me smile. And that’s enough.

And that month or so ago, I thanked the Lord for that visit. The way He had mercy on me and her- giving us time together with sound minds and happy hearts to chat for a bit. She let me rub her nose with mine that day. She held my hand longer than she wanted and she told me she needed a haircut soon. Short and cute like last time. She was tired and I didn’t want to go. I told her to take a rest and yes, I would bring the kids next time, and yes, I would make sure they get outside and play and yes, I would tell Pete she asked about him. I love you, Gramma. I love you, too.

And she let me sing to her, the one I always did. Because it’s true:

“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You’ll never know, dear, how much I love you…”



There’s a dripping at my windowpane, steady.

and the March wind fill- billows the flag and follows the barest branches

blowing across the bluest sky.

I heard the woodpecker pecking just yesterday in the still morning of the first Spring day

and I hadn’t heard his echo in a while.

The sun-

I told my little ones-

it’s closer now


they look upward

squinted and thinking

the place near the stones where my first crocus always lies


– the ground

expectant -like us-

And the white earth is giving way to the dirt tracked in through the backdoor.

Gritty and muddy and messy.

:::: and I think about Spring like this.

It was my birthday when the biggest snow cloaked

and I marveled at the power

immense and all-covering



— immaculate

Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.   +Isaiah 1:18

but now my boot

finds muck




and I just–

-want to shake it off.

and Spring is like that.

It always is.

The way it wakens the dormant

The way it fractures silence

The way it revels in beginning


The way it needs the dirt

-to grow.

Ask the Lord for rain in the springtime;
    it is the Lord who sends the thunderstorms.
He gives showers of rain to all people,
    and plants of the field to everyone. +Zechariah 10

and sometimes how this life

-breaks ground again

how the dew rain falls after the Winter’s gone

deep soaking in the soil

and something organic rises

fresh and bold


and Springtime-

how it compels a looking up and a stretching forth



Today the first robins bounded into the one brown patch

The scarlet::::

stark against snow- wet gray- barked birches


me quietly

of this Hope I have

the Spring sure of arriving

the way He makes

all :

things :

new :

The time of singing[j] has come…
Arise, my darling.
Come away,

my beautiful one.

+Song of Solomon 2

a bleeding heart

Babies, Babies, Friesens!!!! 079

My heart broke heavy this week.

Not the kind of shattering and eye-squinting jolting and in pieces smashing on the floor.

but the kind of breaking that cracks and splinters quiet

steady and sore and lingering

falling by little by little pieces

for a few weeks now

crumbling and soft to the ground.

I knew it was coming and still I was not

quite prepared.

Slow breaking wandering next to hope.

What a gift that hope is.

How it keeps you moving and thinking and talking and praying and remembering

and looking into forward.

And then it happens. So slow-quick.

This life.

It makes me sit and think and pray- long and hard and humbled

about how

fleeting and vaporous

this earthly life is,

and I can be nothing but still.

And my house spins around me needing tidying and cooking,

and I sit still instead, while the littlest fingers find pages in a book

and kids play outside

and a butterfly hovers near my window.

And that tidying can wait.

I need to soak this in:::

And it’s this:::

this life:::

How I live alongside others that I love

and how I invest in a legacy for those I love that has

{not one thing}

to do with the success of checking off items on a notepad.



to do with how I spend my God-grace-given time here,

while He gives me breath,

to love those near me.

And that’s how I  remember her.

How she showed me love

and an open home and

an open table and

an open ear and

an open heart.


How this life is about {that}.

Love like love is meant to be shown. 

Love that overlooked my mistakes,

love that was generous and kind,

love that was stern and honest when it needed to be, 

love that endured seasons of pain and tragedy,

love that was simply happy on a lake in the woods with a fishing pole and a sunset. 

How my fourteen year- old self was awkward and unsure and how she encouraged me.

How she brought a birthday cake to an icy lake on a sunny day in February.

How she introduced me to hot chocolate mixed with coffee on a subzero morning.

How she {loved me enough} to tell me I was wrong.

How she {loved me enough} to celebrate with me.

How she gave my little girl a doll that she still loves.

How flowers made her happy, too.

How she had sons that I love and count as friends for my life.

How she gave me grace and gave me time to make it right.

How she, whether I was 15 years old or 35 years old, didn’t seem to mind that we stayed at her house too long and laughed too much.

How we’d all go fishing on a Summer night on a dirt road and how it made some of my best memories.


How her smile comforted me.


How, this time, she smiled longer than she could


how she reached out to play with my baby when I know she was tired and hurting and aching and

How she

let me kiss her cheek

and how she


took time to invite me in and stay a little while.

That’s the kind of love

that lives long

and sweet

and remembered. 



Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. +Romans 12:15








the gift of the coming of an age


Forty’s coming quickly,

in perhaps a few days from this one.

And it unnerves me deep

a visceral and sudden sweeping in of time and life

wrapped up in blurs of days and years and seasons

and this week past has been just this

silent and not so silent dread mixed with chuckles and tears

and yesterday

in the midst of routine and thankful:::

there was this dawning

beyond the morning


and, yes, so

this Winter’s been slow

slow to freeze

and slow to snow

slow to arrive

and slow to bear down


and yesterday the flakes fell floating like dandelion puffs

and I awed

followed them dawdle- drifting

like it was my first time in these almost- 40 years

and Winter in February is my favorite

and I looked to Him and smiled grateful

snow for the big day, I giggled aloud


He gives me

this gift


and friends invited us to dinner last night

to the place where the only thing on the menu is the crab (I think)

and we stayed lingering longer than two hours over cheesecake and Jesus and laughing

and my babes all tucked tight when we returned

and it was quiet and cozy and full of peace


He gives me

this gift


and I stepped downstairs in a rushing flutter of school and chores and list-to-doing

finding books and papers

and she had left on her desk

this secret note of birthday love in- the- making

with newly learned cursive- scrawl letters bound in glitter and perfection

“my mommy, you’re getting old, but I love you…”

oh, my giggling, weeping heart


He gives me

this gift


and I’m thinking this week

almost full of forty,

that time took no rest to get here.

{And what is it exactly that

I am resting in?}

And each of these many days now,

they are really what everyone says,

they are gifts,

and this squabbling heart

I have

that has fillings of these years of learning and living and walking through










and all

I’ve been given




Years of growing:::

and flowered blue bicycles

and crying

and Cabbage Patches

and divorce

and the far North traveling

and growing cucumbers

and balloons escaping my hand

and old University halls

and churches on a hill

and this man I love

and scratched knees on gravel driveways

and friends of all these almost 40 years

and those peach and pink sunsets

and babies here and with Him

and bills paid and bills waiting

and books of birds and books of Wisdom

and learning all this time

that this




of all is



Who preserved me





for Himself.


and this dawning of age

becomes this proverbial


to unwrap


and every



as another morning to

open my eyes

and walk 

in Him.



That is a Gift that does not flee on wisp of breath

like this world- time escapes us:::

that Gift:::

is a Gift




Open it.


 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.  +Col. 3





life in the morning


It’s in the quiet now.

When I can hear the pounding of the day in the distance.

a new tooth pushing up

and a garbage truck coming

a pencil sharpening before counting

a phone call reminding

and the microwave beeping warmed- up coffee

a hamper filling and I hadn’t been aware

and the woodfire waning

I can hear it all 


in the quiet.


and, first of all, then,

what do I do?

while I wait?

for the silence to day- break open?

after my love leaves through the door

laden down with thoughts of us and a lunch slung over a shoulder?

before those sweet feet tiptoe not so tiptoeing down a hallway?

fore a baby begins whimpering Mama- wondering will he sleep a bit more or is he smiling- ready for a scooping up?

I stand at the counter, wiping bread crumbs into a cupped hand and fumbling spoons and mugs under dim morning light

wishing I had put socks on

::: I sigh

because it is ordinary and 

because it is 


and always I look out through:::

across where the sun climbs behind the birches

and today

it is from- scratch even yet again

golden orange and full of mercy, fresh and distinct– apart from all the last

{how is that so?}

these everyday full- of- only- grace beginnings?

So, first of all, then,

what do I do?

while I wait?

… And I think

there lies this difference

between what I


to do

and what



to do:::

that sweep of space

between waking

and the day filling furious- fast

that belongs–

I think







what will I say





will I actually choose

first, then?

And it does not fall easy for me

this life choice

yes, this

life- giving choice

at sunup

as my phone rests facing down on my nightstand and I want to pick it up

as my computer is ready- charged near my morning chair

and dishes I forgot in the go- to- bedtime are stray and crusted

and that stacking up of good books I resolved about two weeks ago

sit still stiff in their bindings



will I choose first?




And what is that desire that lulls in my heart now?

And I examine it

and I keep it keen and mindful:::


I want His

desire for me:::

to choose



The way He made me


open it up

and drink it in

and spill it out to

those tiptoes I am starting to hear

{right now}

and to

their Daddy

who woke up early

fighting tired


sleeping embers

on a crunching snow morning like this one

So, first, of all, then?

What do I need to do?



Pray to choose the life- giving

over the life- draining.

The Word whose water

makes roots grow deep

and dawning suns rise

out of darkness

and mommies and wives and daughters and friends

pour out those fresh- life words:::

In that hushed and soft sun- blushed morning place…






“Come, everyone who thirsts,
    come to the waters;
and he who has no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
    and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good,
    and delight yourselves in rich food.
Incline your ear, and come to me;
    hear, that your soul may live…”

+Isaiah 55










a song to michael

We’ve been apart now, maybe only three hours,

since that moment you were born.

I don’t know if that is wrong

or if it is right.

but it just is.

and you and me, we’re ok with it.

the doctor, he lifted you and you cried and I wept wow and joy- filled and could not wait to hold you against me.

six months ago now, when the earth was birthing new

and it was the day after


we saw a green flicker across the river on barren branches, you and me.

I held you that day while the sun golden- poured through a story 7 window and I marveled at you in the light streams.

A life- movie played in my head long and slow,

snapshots of this journey the Lord used to bring us close to Him.


I’m writing this in my head as you sleep in the backseat on a long ride from somewhere

and I cannot help but love you.

you are round and full with that wispy hair piled over blue eyes and a nose like your sister’s and that giggle you save for your big brother

and like we all say,

we don’t know what it was like before you.

And saying that makes us all happy.


you were this dream I dreamed a while ago

when I told Him

two were just fine.

our inward boy who prefers holey jeans and a long hug

and our outward girl who likes to give presents and likes to talk and likes to make up knock knock jokes

one of each kind

and both more than I had imagined

on a cold day in January many years ago when my womb went empty and my heart numbed long and heaving breathless air

and He promised me that day

He redeems

He redeems from the darkness and He lifts from the pit and He carries through the valley and no mountain cannot be moved when He speaks

{My lips will shout for joy, when I sing praises to you; my soul also, which you have redeemed… +Psalm71}

and so they were

my two

our two

the joy of her that arrived after years of a thirsty heart and a fallow womb

when I fell dull into shadows

oh, but He redeems

and the gift of him that came after a whirl of brokenness

with him there

and me leaving

and the two of us saying we cannot:::





:::: anymore

without Him.

oh, He redeems.

{They remembered that God was their Rock, the Most High God their Redeemer. +Psalm78}

and then my love was unsure when I said with a wink


um, maybe?

and I dreamed of you then

and laughed knowingly at the notion of just one more

and your strong daddy

true and brave

and full of Him

prayed about you, Michael,

my littlest love…

and I see

where we were then…

when we said

I do

we do

and I see Who He is now

and who we are in Him




are a part of His love showered

on your Daddy and me.

and I want you to know,

my sweet boy,

He redeems.

And I see His redeeming love when I look at you.

and that is a mighty thing.


You’re crying right now, in that backseat

and I sing you my off-key song:

Riches I heed not nor man’s empty praise
Thou mine inheritance now and always
Thou and thou only first in my heart
High King of heaven my treasure Thou are

and you settle a bit and this momma of yours smiles.

I want you to know this, Michael,

that I sing that song over you because it is my prayer for you

even right now,

that He would be first in your heart…

He has good, good things for you, Michael.

And you know what?

It won’t always be what you think you want.





The dream of you is more than I had ever thought would be.

You are our 


He redeemed some of our broken road in the gift of you.


You have a broken momma, Michael, who loves you deeply.

and you have a broken daddy, Michael, who adores you faithfully.


and you have a Father in heaven, Michael, who took these two parents of yours and bound them together through the thick times to arrive at this mundane, everyday, very beautiful day.

This everyday when, you and me, we are riding up the highway and stopping to change diapers and fill up tummies and gas tanks.

This day,

and the hundred more like it, that I pray, I will never take for granted.

This day of you and me driving home to see our family and scoop them up in hugs and kisses and smiles and cuddles and tucking in to our own beds and waking up tomorrow in the same house, thankful for all that was, all that is

and whatever comes next.

Oh, how He redeems.

and when I look at you, Michael, I remember this.










The apples are heaviest now.

Weighing long heaving branches slow and steady.

Closer to the ground.

Ripe for picking:::

picking some

:::slower evenings and cattails

The Summertime

left us quick in one fleeting sundown

and now it is here:

This first day of Falling.


and we sit there under the tree when the light in the morning feels more golden and sweet and dripping

The bees busy with honey have settled resting under the sedum flowers

and the sunflower droops quiet petal- leaving and leaning yearning into the slipping light

and we can smell it on the air

with one hand pulling the sweater out of the closet and closer in the breeze

the way it is now

when yesterday it was one last swim in lily- pad water with ducks gathering far

thunderstorms on a dry porch and the sound of the paddle slicing the stream

and today it is tucking away warm memories

to open up

and dust off when the frosty page is turned back to a pumpkin

and this is what it is:::

a picnic quilting grass and lemonade turning to

orange blaze

and a cup steaming heat rising over

the dashboard and a doughnut before an

earliest morning

on a walk in just- awake woods

crackling leaves underfoot

and this is what it is:::

crackling flames searing marshmallows and summer stories turning to

the first fire burning on August sweat- split wood

warming hands and


when we learn schooling things and life things and God things

and this is what it is:::

when fast has slowed down to watch the sun settle sooner


stews simmer sleepy on the stove


we take our time to see

old things fade and Fall

with hope for new Springing




and this is what it is:::

the way the blossoms bloomed


on a branch

turning to

this rich fruit

laden- down abundant

sweet in season…


to fall in hoping hands…

oh, what,

oh, what will we do with this harvest?

If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit… +John 15