grace (class night)

The washer and dryer are going, and outside skies are clearing up after being washed clean from a night of rainfall.

A mason jar of wild flowers, freshly picked, sits on the kitchen island.

A collection of baseballs over there on the end table from a now-ended season of little league.

Parker the dog is sleeping, with his head resting against my leg.

I scrubbed something disgusting off the porch this morning.

Sarah’s stuffed owl on the coffee table.

A stack of stuff emptied from someone’s backpack.

shorts, a tank top, freshly washed hair, and comfy birkenstocks on my feet


Today is the last day of school.

Last days are a tad heart-wrenching, aren’t they?

(I swear they each grew a foot this year.)

Thankfully, “last days”……. are followed by “first days”.


Grace’s HS graduation is tonight.

Rich and I were away for five days, we returned last night just in time to go to the school for a fun “Class Night” put on by the Seniors, for the Seniors.  Grace looked so pretty marching into the auditorium with the rest of the students.  All the moms and dads looked and looked until their eyes rested on their own dear child. . . . . . . .suddenly on the threshold of completing all those years of school.  We couldn’t help but take the time to remember the years leading up to this day, as they grew from little babies all the way up to the 17 and 18 year olds that they are now.  Lots of love was in the room.

After a 30 minute slideshow, the kids put on one last talent show up there on the stage.

I sat between Jacob and Ethan and it was fun, but today, right now, as I watch these videos of the two songs Grace sang with her friends, I’m a big puddle of mama-tears.


Grace wore a long white dress with roses on it.


life itself is grace


(violets for thia) my friend

“Real love creates a generous openness.  Have you ever been so caught up in something that you just had to share it?  When you are walking alone in the woods, something takes your breath away–a sunset, a waterfall, the simple song of a bird–and you think, ‘If only my beloved were here’.  The best things in life were meant to be shared.”
The Sacred Romance, by John Eldredge

I do so love to share life with you here.  We had a full and happy weekend and I know you did, too.  Isn’t it grand?  Air to breath, faces to smile, good food to enjoy, family, friends, sports, hometown plays, children, grown ups, secrets?

beautiful things don’t ask for attention

open your eyes and notice (be on the look out!)

often life brings me to tears

lovely things are silent

Lovely things are silent….
Rosebuds waxing bloom,
Shadows stealing softly
In a darkened room;
Dragonflies on rushes,
Stars in dark blue skies;
Hatching, fuzzy birdlets,
Love in sweethearts’ eyes.

Lovely things are silent. . .
Rainbows in the sky,
Violets shedding fragrance,
A soft breeze waltzing by;
An apple tree in blossom,
Sunsets all aglow;
Moonlight on the water,
Falling soft white snow.

Lovely things are silent. . .
Foam clouds in the sky,
Hummingbirds at flowers,
Butterflies gliding by,
A spider’s dainty spinning,
Wild flowers on a hill.
I bow my head in silence
And in my heart I’m still.
~Betty Fox Solberg

It’s 44 degrees at our place this morning and there is a cheerful fire going in our wood pellet stove.  I’m still in my comfortable clothes, with thick socks and slippers on, too.  Jacob is getting ready for college and work, our chocolate lab is snoring at my feet.  Cat snoozing on the windowsill behind me.  The house is quiet and peaceful.

Outside purple and white violets are still in bloom.  Some of our town has lilacs open, but mine are not flowered yet.  I worry about the trees because last year’s gypsy moth eggs have hatched, there are tiny baby caterpillars everywhere.  Baby turtles were found on the bank of the pond this weekend, a miracle in miniature.

‘Tis the season of shivering as we watch our boys play little league baseball.

My husband preached yesterday in church.  The whole service did something to my heart; softened it.  Love was in the air.

Our daughter Grace is a senior in High school.  There is nervousness in the family because we know “last times” are happening and happening fast.  In the fall, our three oldest children will be going away to college.

This weekend was “the last school drama production”.  I cried and so did she.  Oh how she has loved being part of it all. . . .

Grandma and Grandpa came to watch her.  We had time for a ramble in the woods and a trip to town, too.  Ice cream cones, laughter, games of catch for the boys.

*  * * *

“Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory.”

“. . . .this happened (life itself?) so that the work of God might be displayed.”

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girls visiting before getting ready for the play on Saturday; Brittany and Grace

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our family pianist

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Grandma’s here!

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my mom, my friend

we enjoy the same things; home decorating, kitchen life, family, and nature, birding. . .



I ran the baby turtle back to the house to show the children. A wonder and a marvel.


thick grapevine growing up and into a tree


marsh marigold, ferns growing


crossing the stream with a handful of apple blossoms

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garden flowers

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granddaughter and her grandma

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the brothers were practicing baseball and grandpa couldn’t resist joining in

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I think ofttimes as the night draws nigh
Of an old house on the hill,
Of a yard all wide and blossom-starred
Where children played at will.  ~Author Unknown




street bench


little lady with her grandpa, eating chocolate

ice cream


Grace’s last high school drama production:  Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

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dancing in the middle of the stage with the boy in white shirt

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“Old bamboo” number


scene at the beach song and dance

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very old inventors “The Roses of Success” song and dance (Grace is in the middle)

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teamwork song (second to end, next to her friend Jenna)

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“The Bombie Samba”

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final bows





a touching tribute to their beloved director, as this was her last musical


after the show on Saturday night


lots of hugs


with her proud Grandpa and Dad

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after the show on Sunday

many tears were shed

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Dad with his precious daughter; we are so proud of you, Grace.

Happy Monday friends!

thankful for:

love notes on the counter from an older brother
little hands touching my hair
questions from curious minds
my husband’s embrace
my husband going to the gas station to get me cream for my coffee this morning
a caring school nurse calling to tell me Sarah has a sore throat
purring cats
warmth inside when outside is shivery
guitar clips via text from Ethan, who is coming home this week
the start of a fresh new week; may God bless us everyone!

“And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water.”  Isaiah 35:7


seventeen now


People who know Grace know what makes her special.

(Everyone is special in their own unique way.  Everyone.)

And Grace is special because of what is in her heart, her mind, her soul.

Her heart is full of love.  Ever since she was a little girl, she wanted a hand to hold and someone to listen.  She wanted to encourage, give attention, give hugs.

Her mind is bright.  It wants to lead.  It thinks of things that no one else does, because God gave her a gift, just as He gives each one of us a gift to use for this world we live in.  There is no one like Grace, there is no mind like her mind.  She has desire to busily learn and grow.  So many interests, hobbies, jobs.  Once she sets her mind on something, look out.

Her soul belongs to God.  She loves the holy Scriptures, the hymns, the worship.  Her spirit always rejoices, and produces the good fruit of love, joy, goodness and peace.

As her mom, that is what I see.


At first I thought, I’m not going to wax eloquent with this post, I’m just going to let the pictures speak their thousand words.

But who am I kidding?  I have words!  Must.get.them.out.


It just so happened that when she was born, and after the nurses made sure her airway was clear, they gave Grace to her Dad first……and I love that.  (She certainly is a Daddy’s girl.)   My husband placed our first little daughter into my arms.  And she was an absolute DOLL.  A teeny tiny doll baby………..

That was 17 years ago, today.


Happy Birthday, Grace!

I rarely see this girl of mine these days because she’s a busy busy senior in High School, and very very involved in Drama and Music.  When I got home yesterday afternoon, the bus from school had already gone by, and so I chatted with Dave in the kitchen and then made my way through the living room to get to my bedroom…..and there was Grace on the couch, reading a book.  Oh I was so excited, I admit I shrieked with glee, I grabbed her and we went outside to do her birthday photo shoot (I like to take good photos of my children on or around their birthdays).  Photos that I didn’t think I would have time to take because I rarely see her in the daylight hours.  Squeeeeeeeeeee!


“One can never consent to creep
when one feels an impulse to soar.”


Grace and I have a great relationship….although at times it is better for her to go to her Dad with things, as well.  (He and I make an excellent parenting team and often give each other high fives).

She adores her two big brothers, and her younger siblings, as well.  In my mind, I can see the relationships she has with each one.

“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19

That’s what mothers do.


Grace is applying to colleges and in a few weeks I’m taking her to visit one.  There is part of me that is already preparing for when she leaves and I’m not going to lie…’s going to be hard for our family to see her go.  But go she must, because she’s meant to soar.



(Grace’s cat kept photobombing)

Yesterday while the kids were at school, my mom and I were texting and trying to decide what kind of cake Grace would want me to make for her…..Mom said “vanilla with strawberries” and I guessed “chocolate with vanilla frosting.”  Hours later I was able to ask Grace.

She said she wanted a cheesecake, and even specified the temperature of it:  partially frozen.

partially frozen cheesecake!!!!  Never would have guessed that one.

I haven’t MADE a cheesecake in probably 20 years so this is going to be a fun day.




(one of my favorite photos, which came about because I said, “KITTYYYYYY!” a bit too frantically, trying to get the cat to look at the camera).  ha ha ha ha!  They have the same expression on their faces!



While writing, this song popped into my head:

Forever and ever, you’ll stay in my heart
And I will love you
Forever and ever, we never will part
Oh, how I love you
Together, forever, that’s how it must be
To live without you
Would only mean heartbreak for me.

~Aretha Franklin, “I say a Little Prayer”

I think I’ll play later and make Grace dance in the kitchen with me.  ❤

Happy Birthday, sweet 17.


how quickly they grow



He arrived on a Thursday.  

He gave me happy baby kisses on a Friday.

We went for walks in the woods on a Saturday.

And took him to church on a Sunday.

He started school on a Monday.

We baked brownies and pancakes and mashed potatoes on a Tuesday.

He brought home a sweetheart named Tessa on Wednesday.

And left for college on a Thursday.


~for my son Ethan, on the day before we leave for Vermont.