Saturday, February 27, 2010

8 Things

8 Things I will miss about the Winter Olympics

1. Something to look forward to every night!

2. Figure skating- those minutes of being transfixed. It is such the perfect mix of emotions with the tension and the relief and the disappointment and the triumph. Love it.

3. Enjoying looking at snow from afar.

4. I love it when they show the parents of the athletes as they watch. They must just be so proud and so nervous.

5. Yeah, I’m a sucker for that little Olympic refrain with the drum beat at the beginning. So exciting!

6. I love the glimpses I get of some international camardaerie.

7. Laying on the bed with Willow and Kendra every night. I found me some good Olympics buddies.

8. Well, I must say it……..Apollo Ohno. Am I too old to say that?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Wednesday Link Love

So simple, so fun!

Loving these poppies. Well, loving anything that offers more hope than piles of really dirty snow!

I once happened upon a huge box of old slides at the thrift store and have kicked myself a zillion times for not buying them and giving them a good home. Could have made these curtains!

Well, if you’ve been around here long, you know I love all things granny square, blackboard paint, and tiny house-ish…so have a look here and here and here and here and here .

Short list this week- I’ve been watching a LOT of Olympics!

Monday, February 22, 2010


Our word for today was Intention. We had been invited to bring something that represents Intention to place on the alter, whether that be a personal intention or just a symbol of the word itself.  A few folks explained their symbol, most just left them there (and all of us to wonder!).

I loved this good word from Ken Sehested and his book In the Land of the Living.

Bright Sadness

(In the Eastern Orthodox tradition, the season of Lent is described as a “bright sadness”)

In the madness that surrounds us,

our lives, our community, our world,

we give thanks, nevertheless.

More is at work than we can see.

Lent is a time for clearing and cleansing.

Dustballs happen.

In the midst of life’s crippling failures,

we still give thanks.

In the midst of Fox News’ deceptions,

we still give thanks.

Nevertheless, nevertheless.

Lent is a time for checking appetites.

Longings and desires, created for pleasure

in God’s bountiful creation

have come unleashed.

Nevertheless, the bright sound of earth’s promise

brings joy to our lips.

Tether us anew to your Provision.

During Lent we follow Jesus into the desert,

grappling with the distorted longings and lusts that

corrupt the world and even our own hearts.

Even so, more is at work than we can see.

The Spirit is not quenched.

How can we keep from singing?!

Saturday, February 20, 2010


There are some nights when we’re all together and we go out and do something really rich and fun, and it feels like when we drive home that we are this big rainbow cloud-y warm fuzzy car slicing through the night.

Such was the case last night. The girls and I enjoyed dinner and a concert with a big group of great friends. The concert was just so so so good, the pizza was great, our friends were wonderful, and I felt like we rode home in THE HAPPY CAR.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Could this be a Coke bottle??

Did you ever see that movie The Gods Must Be Crazy? A village of bushmen are living a normal happy life, working and getting along and satisfied with all that they needed. A coke bottle dropped from an airplane lands in the village, and life for the village takes a drastic turn. Suddenly there is something that everyone wants to possess resulting in jockeying for position and trickery and fighting, all over this gift they believe was sent to them by the gods.

About 15 years ago DH and I made a choice to give up tv. We had a tv, we just turned it off and let cable go. It has still been here. When we became parents we decided to wait to see if it became an issue with the kids, and it really never did. On occasion they may have missed it, but for the most part I’m happy with our decision and with the books that have been read and relationships that have grown in the time that might have been spent in front of the tv. The old tv worked well for watching videos on, and in times of something big like presidential debates and such we could hook it up and get a snowy picture.

This fall our baby goes off to college. Maybe it’s goofy, but I started thinking about how very quiet this house was going to be with them all gone. I’ve been trying to remember what DH and I did around here before kids. A tv kept popping into my thoughts.

So, guess what I got for Valentines Day?! DH knows I’m a sucker for the Winter Olympics and he surprised me. K and I have had a blast watching every night. So far, that’s all I’ve watched. But then there was the night DH needed to go to bed early, and the coke bottle television is in our room. I couldn’t watch the Olympics! I got myself all in a snit for a moment. Well, for a while. And then I realized how much I do not want my life to be centered around a tv. He slept, I read, and we were all just fine.

I do not want to have to worry that I’ll have to lug that thing across the country to try to throw it off the edge of the world like the bushmen finally did with their coke bottle!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wednesday Link Love


Just put this up tonight, waiting for some little friends to visit so we can mark their names on our giant tape measure. Want one?

Go ahead and make a file for next years Valentines- or maybe you can think of fun ways to use this or this for some other occasion.

Check out this great stamp in Amy’s shop.

If you make these for someone you love, do you think they will ever ever forget the day you did and served them up?

Darn, I wish I had had this recipe on World Nutella Day!

Aren’t these great?! Could they be any simpler?

My son is traveling with these guys over spring break to do service projects and some concerts

I see some cherry blossom garland in my future!

Today is the birthday of my dear friend Beth. Beth is truly one of the brightest most energetic and creative people I’ve ever known. She has been my encourager, my muse, and she is who I want to be when I grow up. Happy Birthday Beth!



Several years ago when I entered into that peri-menopausal state where I could not order or contain my thoughts, I began to explore new ways to spend time in prayer and meditation.    I don’t even remember who introduced me to the finger labyrinth, but it has been a welcome friend for me.   I visualize different things as I trace its familiar corridors.  Sometimes I visualize myself walking past and away from the distractions of this world, or I envision all of the beloved saints and loved ones lining the corridors, pushing me on in my journey to the center.   If I am agitated or anxious,  as my fingers move along toward that special place in the center (which I call the lap of God!) I literally see myself leaving behind all of that stuff, moving to a place of peace and joy.  When a friend is going through something so horrible that I can’t even put prayer into words, I scoop up my beloved and carry them through the labyrinth, setting them down right there in the center of God’s great love. 

I began using prayer beads in much the same way.   Pictured here are my “at home” beads and my office beads.   Each bead represents someone I pray for regularly and is a reminder and a link between me and my family and friends and the larger world> Something about holding that tiny pebble of a bead helps me to better hold them in my heart.

Years ago during Lent we used a simple meditation bell to call us into a time of silence.  I’ve wanted one since then and it took me until the last few weeks to get my act together to find one.  Nine bucks at Amazon? Sold!  Loving it!

Anyway, if you are like me and need something physical to hold onto to anchor you to others, I recommend you put together your own little cast of colors and textures  

While snapping the above pictures, couldn’t resist a photo of a little tiny corner in my office.  I work in a busy clinic for folks who are living with and/or are affected by HIV.  There are not very many little pockets of whimsy in the clinic , so I created my own so that I never have to look far to see something I truly love.   Every little item has a story!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Music Monday (on Tuesday!)

Weather permitting, I'm seeing Mitch on Friday night and I am sooo pumped. Louisvillians, he will be at Rudyard Kipling and it will be a great evening.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

And, with each swallow, time is sublimed.

Friday night the Mean Moms got together for dinner and therapy at our usual hangout, a Vietnamese Restaurant.  It was cold, and we all came from harried days.  The first one to arrive had ordered hot tea, and was quick to change the order to a pot when we arrived.  That simple cup of tea was the perfect transition from the clamor of the day into the great comfort of good friends.  Just that morning I had read this wonderful paragraph in “The Elegance of the Hedgehog” by Muriel Barbery.

The tea ritual: such a precise repetition of the same gestures and the same tastes; accesion to simple, authentic and refined sensations, a license given to all, at little cost, to become aristocrats of taste, because tea is the beverage of the wealthy and of the poor; the tea ritual, therefore, has the extraordinary virtue of introducing into the absurdity of our lives an aperture of serene harmony.  Yes, the world may aspire to vacuousness, lost souls mourn beauty, insignificance surrounds us.  Then let us drink a cup of tea.  Silence descends, one hears the wind outside, autumn leaves rustle and take flight, the cat sleeps in a warm pool of light.  And with each swallow, time is sublimed.

My youngest savors a cup of tea every night just before bedtime, and is always kind enough to offer to fix me a cup.  I think I need to start enjoying the luxury of a cup of hot tea!

Thrift Store Haul


K needed some suspenders in order to dress like a geek some day this week, so we scheduled a thrift store outing for today. I get excited just pulling in the parking lot, wondering what I will find. She found suspenders. I found some spring table linens- we use a table cloth a day and about 6 or 8 napkins so I’m always on the lookout.


I’m not sure what this hammered metal stuff is called, but it brings back some childhood memory, and this was such a sweet little tray.


I couldn’t pass this sweet little picture by. It says on the back that Ruth Rae embroidered it in 1984. All of those stitches and french knots. I just couldn’t leave it there.


And I love this picture frame made of rolled magazine pages!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Wednesday Link Love


I love every quilt in this post, but I love this one the most- and she found it at a thrift store! Why can’t I find something like this at my thrift store?!

Katie knows how to make a great Valentine!

Chalkboard paint…….again. I just love that stuff!

I’m not saying that I could make it, but it does look like an

easy knock-off.

I’m a sucker for tags. That said, I’m loving this LOVE set.

If only I had seen these back in the years when I always went to an Oscar party.

Antique Mommy has this lovely post. Check it out!

It’s not too late to whip up one of these!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Day

So, we had a snow day today!  The office was closed and I had this great chunk of unplanned time to piddle and I loved it!  I had a million little fun things I wanted to do, and got about 200,000 of them done, including this little project. 

002_auI saw this quote the other day- it’s from a movie I have never seen- and I thought how well it summed up my love for DH, K, S, and C.   YOU ARE WHAT I NEVER KNEW I ALWAYS WANTED


How could I have ever known that they were just what I had always wanted, when they are so much more than I could have even dreamed of?


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Music Monday

Last year during a little season of sadness I stumbled upon Be OK and Keep Breathing and they became the soundtrack of my life. (soundtrack of Grays Anatomy too I see!) Ingrid pulled me through.
Anyone know what that is that she plays? Small guitar? Big uke?

Music Monday II

Really nice cover......just have to wonder why she recorded it in the bathroom.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


As I've mentioned a number of times, last year everyone in our church was encouraged to select a word to live into for 2009. We shared them in January, and then began to work on an altered book that included each of our words. A number of us worked on and off on the book. Each Sunday one of the pages from the book was the cover for our bulletin. Today we offered up our completed book and blessed that book and those words.

Yesterday at an all day retreat, we worked together to select words that we would like to live into as a community for 2010. Many of us have personal words, but these were words to live into as a church family. The words that came out of it were strong wonderful big words- words like anchored and uninhibited, create and neighborhood, peculiar and family. There are about 24 words that came out of the day and I look forward to living with and into them this year.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wednesday Link Love

So, now I’ve got to get more sucker sticks……

And some green tomato jelly…..

Oh my, this looks like a good cure for the February blues!

A sweet message for moms and daughters…..

Oh, tiny houses!

I am so in love with this chair!

My continuing love affair with buttons…

I love every one of the three rings in this post!

And I love this sweet love story…

Allison is giving something very cool away and you really need to have a look and leave her a comment. And while you are there, you will fall in love with her and her sweet blog.

Love this! I hope to get my Valentines decorations out this weekend….

Monday, February 1, 2010

Music Monday

I don't know Heather, but I really enjoyed this.

Bliss List

In this photo made Wednesday, June 10, 2009, David Brown Kinloch talks about the new homes in the background that have replaced vacant and demolished properties as he stands in Lucille Grant Park in the Phoenix Hill neighborhood of Louisville, Ky. The neighborhood association built the park on property that was once the site of more vacant property.

After reading this post and the post that inspired it, I’ve decided I want to start putting together my bliss list.    Sure, I’ll remember the biggies like wedding day and graduations and school acceptance letters, but what of those days (or moments) where bliss just falls on me in some unexpected measure? 

I’m thinking tonight of the great great happiness I felt in the days and weeks just after our little neighborhood park was created.   I was so excited at the whole amazing way things had come together.  A house torn down, a great collaborative effort , months of planning, and in the end, a piece of green carved out for our little urban neighborhood. 

On the day that it was dedicated, I commented to my mother that I hadn’t felt as excited or happy about anything since my wedding day.   For the first few weeks, I went over and sat on a bench almost every night and just looked and and loved that little park.  I envisioned it as our great “third place”, and it has been in many ways.  What I didn’t envision, couldn’t have even dreamed, was that I would have kids of my own playing there in that park in the years to come.  Sadly, the giant tree that anchored the whole park and that we worked so hard to plan around went down in a big storm a few years ago, so we are growing new trees to someday take its place. 

We’ve shared many a meal there, played croquet, walked our dogs, played and listened to music, thrown steak dinners there for our homeless friends, met new neighbors, and crossed paths with the old.   Lots of great days have been spent there, but none more golden than that first day. Bliss.

And as for the anti-bliss……..on Friday I made a whole batch of those s’mores on a stick for C to take back to school with him.  I left them out on wax paper to set up a bit and we all went to watch a video on the computer.  The gate was locked, so I’m not sure how it happened, but I heard a little sound… the sound of wax paper crumbling…..and then saw Willow run down the hall with six or eight sticks sticking out of her mouth in all kinds of angles.   The rest of the sticks (we hope) were in the kitchen floor, and nary a s’more or scrap of one in sight.