Already and not yet, but the hummingbirds are coming back soon

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Earlier today, the girls and I pumped our legs on the swings under a mostly cloudless canopy of blue. Some trees hinted at turning green; others not at all yet. We startled a snake walking to a picnic table to set down our water bottles near the playground at the woods. We unzipped our coats in the sun; put them back on in the shade. Alice picked me a trout lily because I’m her “best mom.” I accepted it gratefully, but left it wilting on the picnic table because I’m not the best mom. I’m tired, grateful for siblings who’ll play when I want to sit.

For a while the playground was theirs alone, but two moms strolled over with toddlers. I busied myself at the table with a pen and a notebook. I tried not to hear their reviews of weight-loss shakes and gym memberships. I regretted not bringing a caffeinated tea, and my mind flitted from my notebook to the sky — the blue sky, obstructed by leafless trees. I want a big blue sky, I wrote in my notebook. A big blue sky. And I want to run. […]

And about those sidewalks

In the days before homes and hearth-fires, house crickets were depressed wanderers; aimless. Every other creature on earth seemed well-suited to their homes; why not the cricket? Their grasshopper cousin cajoled them to try out their legs, to no avail. The ape suggested, since they were so unhappy, they just give up. And the mole: the Read more about And about those sidewalks[…]

Putting ourselves out there

“We say Christ is Lord, and He can interrupt our plans anytime He wants. We just don’t expect Him to do it. We assume He will affirm everything we are doing and never ask us to change anything we have planned.” Henry & Richard Blackaby, “Experiencing God” *** Alice went to a kindergarten for four-year-olds Read more about Putting ourselves out there[…]

A small patch of stable ground

The weight of the Rubbermaids bent the wooden shelves in the garage. It was, what, 19 degrees, and I had Dave lugging them inside earlier this week. “Why now?” he moaned. He’s been going to the gym, all that bacon, and his arms, you know. “Because –” I started, not sure how to explain why now Read more about A small patch of stable ground[…]

The miracle of some flour and yeast

“Perhaps the problem is that we don’t know what the meaning of this holiday, of Jesus’ pushing into the world, is. If we did, we wouldn’t have to worry about consumerism; if we knew what the Incarnation meant, we’d be preoccupied with awe that we wouldn’t notice all the shopping.” Lauren F. Winner, “Girl Meets Read more about The miracle of some flour and yeast[…]

The waves and winds still know

“Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know the Christ who ruled them while he dwelt below.” “Be Still My Soul“ Our church, this United Methodist plant church of some 14 years or so, has for the first time a building of its own. (Praise God!) After setting up and clanging shut folding Read more about The waves and winds still know[…]

This mother needs an Advent

Dave’s making a table. It’s going to be a long one with thick oak boards that once held back horses. In a month or two, maybe it’ll hold up plates of macaroni and cheese. When it’s done, it’ll gleam (I hope). I’ll wipe into my hand those bread crumbs, feeling the table’s texture — oh, Read more about This mother needs an Advent[…]