Category: blessings


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31 days?
I wasn’t sure I could do it.
31 days?
Did I have enough to say for 31 days?

31 days…..?

It seemed so daunting at first.
Scary.
Huge.
Too much.

31 days….?

Of writing,
Of sharing,
Of reading,
Of reflecting.

It seemed huge.
It seemed too much.
I’m so busy I meet myself coming and going.
I’m so busy;  how could I ever accomplish such a thing?

I’m so busy.
….for 31 days.

So busy being blown away by the experience.
So busy being enriched by the posts I’ve read.
So busy being stopped in my own moments.

Forced to be still,
To reflect,
To think,
To BE.

So here I am.
At the end of 31 days.
31 days…!
Each a little different.
Each it’s own flavor slice.
Each a reflection of who I am, where I am, how I am.

I set my goal.
I held my breath.
I jumped right in…
And wrote.

…for 31 days!

Then sings my soul…..

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Reflecting on this Easter Sunday was much tougher than I imagined it would be.   There were so many moments to savor:  the sight of my beautiful grandmother in church for another Easter service,  the Hubs and his mini-me Grand sitting on the grass playing with Hot Wheels from the egg hunt,  all the wonderful food and family time, …
But ultimately it came down to this.
Cascarone Wishes.

May every day contain a bit of Easter.
With rejoicing and rebirth,
Faith and hope,
Family, food, and fun.

May you have just the right amount of confetti in your hair.
And most importantly, of course, the sheltering arm of someone who loves you draped across your shoulders.

Then sings my soul….

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Grandboy  #1 experienced the highs and lows of losing a tooth today…
as only a 6 year old can.

At. High. Drama.

The illustration says it all.
Especially when narrated by the Grand.

Starting on the right — because the image bled through from the other side.

Which was, incidentally, another of the traumas of our morning.  But that’s a story for another day.

Today’s slice starts now, from the increasingly toothless mouth of Grandboy #1:

So, you see….
I was eating my donut.
Chocolate’s the best, you know.
But I was just eating and it started messing with my loose tooth.

I kept on eating but then!!!!!
It fell out!!!
I was lucky because it stuck in the donut….

But then everything went wrong!
Everything!!!!!!
I can’t believe it happened!!!!!

Did I mention high drama???  Oh my GOODNESS, high drama!

So then.
I put my tooth in my hand and came over to show you but BOOM!
It fell out of my hand!
Just. Like. That.

I couldn’t believe it!
You helped me look, but…
You LAUGHED!
You said it happens to everyone.
You said people lose their teeth then LOSE their teeth!
You said it happened to Josh and Kat, and all we have to do is write a letter, but I don’t know if I believe you!

So then I was just sad…..
Really, REALLY sad.

Josh called and Kat called and they said they wrote a letter.
They said the tooth fairy understands….
So, maybe…???

I sure hope this works,  Teeta.

I just don’t know if the tooth fairy is that smart.

Oh, that boy…
Then sings my soul!

P.S.
I made absolutely,  positively,  100% sure his Momma knows what the tooth fairy did at my house when this happened….
Because I know.
The tooth fairy IS that smart!

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It’s Good Friday and a holiday.
And this….
This is the view from where I sit.

At first glance,
SPRING!
At second,
So much more.

The redbird at the feeder.
The shallows in the nest.
The succulent overflowing the old wash tub mounted on a stump.

Life!!!!

A lone goldfish,
Swimming under the repurposed hunting tripod —
Now art over our crazy overgrown pond.

The bathtub iris,
Flourishing in the claw foot tub, rescued from a heap of discarded past —
Now a wildlife fixture on our porch.

The sparrows,
Perching on ocean bouys,
Treasures washed ashore and gathered on my coveted sunrise walks on the beach —
Now a resting place among the feeders.

Hmmmm.
At second thought,
The first glance was right.
SPRING!

Rebirth.
Regrowth.
Repurpose.

Renewed.

All while being serenaded by the Star Wars cantina chatter of my beloved swallows,
In the nest they’ve spent years building.
Nestled just so in the corner
Where we peek at each other under the curtains handmade by my mom….

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The view from where I sit.
Oh!
Then sings my soul!

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There’s no place like home.

As the gate opens,
I feel myself physically begin to relax.

Then, I see the cows…
And my heart soars.
Sugar’s here!!
The Hubs moved her across the road today!

Then the jackrabbit escorts.
With their long tawny ears
And little black tails,
They are definitely one of my favorite compound words.

And at the second gate, the pups.
Boomer, dancing in circles of joy because I’m home at last.
Latte, making her trademark & namesake “lotta” noise.

And finally.
Home.

Pups and I raced inside.
10 minutes to pjs, clean face,
And bedtime.

All is well.
Life is good.
Then sings my soul….

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Found this treasure today and it made me think
Maybe I was born for this…

A ponderer of thoughts
With a way for words.
A student of the world around us
With a penchant for the click of the keys.

Starting young.
Books and songs in the lap of my mom.
And this.
Definitely this.

Another of my treasures is my dad’s old steamer desk where he wrote oh, so many words.
It is huge
And heavy
And goes with nothing.

Nothing, that is,
Except my heart,
And the words that pour forth from it.

Then sings my soul….

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Next week, 4th graders across the great state of Texas will take a test of ridiculous proportions.
It’s the Writing STAAR and there are people out there who honestly believe it measures the knowledge and know-how of our kiddos.

If only they knew —

What the kids go home to,
What they witness,
The challenges they face…

But also (and more importantly) —

The twinkle in his eye when he tells a silly joke,
The warmth of her hug when she greets you Monday morning,
The light bulb moments,
The wonderings,
The laughter.

And so,
This week before the test,
We go to Camp Write Along!

Nothing is the same at school.
We rally.
We sing.
We play games.

And we write.

We write… a lot!

But, first we sing.
To the tune of Tub Thumping:
“We’re here to write! And then we’ll write again.  There’s nothing gonna hold us back!”

And then we use Oreos as metaphors for good writing:

Oreos Thins?
Bare minimum…I mean, the basics are there, but who wants to read that?

Original Oreos?
That’s better!  The intro and conclusion (cookies) are more filled out and really frame things for the reader.
But something’s missing…

Ah, Double Stuff!!!
Now we’re talking!
Still have the strong intro/conclusion,  but now they frame something more! Something powerful and important because it’s the story of our writers!

And so — this week before the STAAR…
We write.
But we also sing,
And we play.
But most importantly we live and laugh.

And eat — I mean WRITE — good double-stuffed Oreo writing!

Then sings my soul….

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It was late Friday night during Spring Break of her freshman year at UT-Austin, and she was well on her way to a 3.84 GPA in the coveted and rigorous School of Engineering, when I got the call.

“Momma?” she whispered.  “Can you talk?”

“Of course, Babe.  What’s up?”

“Oh, Momma….. I just don’t think I can do it.  I mean… I know I can do it.  I just don’t think I can love it….”

“Do what?  Love what, Honey?”

“Engineering!!!”

And through choked back sobs, she poured out her heart, her worries, and her fears.
She could do it, no doubt, but if she couldn’t love it…..?

“Well, now’s the perfect time to figure that out!”

And figure it out, she did.
Within the week, she had conferenced with advisors in both the schools of engineering and natural sciences, and she had a plan:  Biology with a focus on evolution, ecology, and conservation.

The next semester she began her new program of study and now, here she is, 9 months away from graduation.

Is she in a field of high demand?
Nope.

Will she make lots of money?
Probably not.

Does she have a clear career path?
Not yet.

But is she happy?
…one look at her face today says it all.

Then sings my soul….

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I’ve always loved mowing the grass.

Grass clippings.
Grass stains.
…and the smell!

I thought it was because it’s an accomplishable task.
All too often, those are hard to come by!

I thought it was because I could see my progress.
Don’t we all need those days?

I thought it was because it’s precious time outside.
Something I always need.
Always.

But it’s more than that.
It’s the time.
The time to think.
The time to ponder.
The time to remember.

Today – as I have every Spring for the past 6 years –
I thought of a friend from my childhood.

6 years ago, he stood on my yard – patchy from my (failed) attempts to rid it of stickers before we hosted the class reunion –
And teased me mercilessly about my landscaping skills.
I slugged him in the arm.
He wrapped me up in a hug.
And we laughed a laugh from across the years….

And a week later, he was gone.
Massive heart attack.
At 43….
Too young.
Too soon.
Too, too sad.

But somehow, someway,
Every time I mow the yard,
I remember only the good times.
The laughs,
The smiles,
The teasing….

I’ve always loved mowing the grass.

Grass clippings.
Grass stains.
The smell.

But, more than that,
The memories….

Then sings my soul….

Woke up this morning with joy on my heart and a smile on my face,

Coasting on a wave of happiness from the birthday love of yesterday.

Then it hit me!  It’s Saint Patrick’s Day!

I started searching for an Irish blessing to share with my friends as a thank-you for the many blessings they shared on the anniversary of my birth, and I was stopped in my tracks!

I love these!!!  Such rhythm!  Such wisdom!  Such…YES!

IrishBlessing5

Oh the places and times I’ve searched for just these words….

The birth of a child, the blessing of a marriage, the start of a day ~ This says it all!

IrishBlessing3

This one, I had heard before — well, at least the first few lines.

But what a wonderful sentiment as one sends a loved one down the road.

I whisper it today for my aunt and grandma as they travel to my grandma’s home just to check and see and breathe the air of her independence.

I sing it out for the Girlchild and her love as they run errands here and there.

I send it to the Hubs, my Mom, the Boychild….all who are making the commute on the roads that have more and more and more distracted drivers.

IrishBlessing4

Yes.  Just yes.  For all of the loved ones, all of the time, for all of the reasons.

But then there’s the one that ended my search….

IrishBlessing6

Oh, this!  It captures the spirit of the Irish as I know and love them (us!) most.

So with this, I will close with my Irish-German-English-with a smidge of Cherokee blessing:

On this day and every day,

may your steps be true,

your heart see joy,

your soul sing at the beauties of the world,

and the splinters never point the wrong way!