Sunday, December 23, 2007

Tin Men

"Oz didn't give nothing to the tin man, that he didn't, didn't already have." -Dewey Bunnell

The Wizard of Oz was on the other night and it triggered memories for my husband.
David played the Cowardly Lion in his sixth grade production of the Wizard of Oz. He was a precocious boy, the kind of kid that C.S. Lewis was, the kind that people wanted to "wipe that look off his face". Giving David that part allowed him to throw his energy into a wildly popular character and perform with raucous abandon. Our neighbor, Ann, was cast as the Scarecrow and a boy who I never met was the Tin Man.

The Tin Man boy had some problems and was teased by some of his classmates. I'm sure his life had happy moments along with the sad, as we all do, but at some point later on in his adult life he committed suicide.

I wonder how many Tin Men out there need to know that they are loved for who they are. I pray- Jesus make it real. Make love real.

We're all tin men.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

fa la la la la la la

"It's coming on Christmas. They're cutting down trees."- Joni Mitchell

We have a beautiful Christmas tree that we cut down at a tree farm forty minutes or so from St. Louis. On the way home it was windy and we were concerned that my husbands eagle scout knots wouldn't hold- but they did.

I hosted the annual neighborhood Bunco Christmas party at our country club. I really stress over hosting Anything- even if all I have to do is choose a menu with the help of the incredible woman who's job it is to plan such things. It was wonderful and all of my stress was for naught.

Yesterday my family and I attended the sentencing of someone we love in the Federal Court building in St. Louis. Our friend pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud. He helped some New Zealanders get visas to come here and drive trucks. Our friend saw a need and thought he could fill it by the creative use of the system. Shortly after he was convicted the President said it was ok for some Mexicans to aquire the same type of visa. As Uncle Scar said so eloquently in The Lion King-"Life's not fair."

It's been a busy time.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

To See the World in a Fortune Cookie

Can God speak through a Chinese fortune cookie?
I'm not placing my faith in them, but I have had a recent streak of finding them out of the blue. Like on the floor of the 24hour fitness locker room after my yoga workout.

The first message said,"It's not how much money you have, it's what you do with it."

I do stress over money, and the little message prompted me to pick up Suze Orman's book, The Laws of Money- which I own- and was reminded that I am to have power over money, not be a slave to it. Advice to self.

The second one-yes, there were two of them- said,"Believe in yourself and others will believe in you too."

I know in whom I believe, but I don't always believe that He has really called me for anything special. I can definitely fall into the Eeyore category. Oh poor me. Nobody cares about poor old me...

I study God's word. The Living Word. And it is life. It's nice though to get an unexpected- if somewhat goofy message- out of the blue.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Favorite Things

My friend Sharon Hinck wrote about things that ministered to her. "Little treats brought in by the ravens," she called them.
Here are some of mine:
Trips to the St.Louis Zoo or the Missouri Botanical Gardens preceded by pizza at Whole Foods with my children- who are like a band of merry maids and men.
The movie theater at Plaza Frontenac. A cozy old fashioned theater that does not offer stadium seating and plays movies like Miss Potter, Becoming Jane, and The Namesake.
Kennebunkport,Maine in Autumn with my dear husband. Breathe in that ocean air... The whole thing makes me absolutely giddy.(Okay, that's a big treat, but I'm on a roll.)
The smell of lavender and roses.
Felting crocheted things.

When I consider that the creator of the universe made me to respond to good things both small and great; I am overwhelmed. But then He uses the foolish things to confound the wise.

Inhale oxygen. Exhale the peace of the Lord.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I'm Writing A Book

Well, I'm finally doing it. All my life I've wanted to write a novel, and now- I'm actually doing it. It's a first attempt for me, but I want to say to the world, "I'm going for it!"
It's scary. It's slow. I feel awkward and vulnerable. Uncharted territory terrifies me. I know that I have nothing to lose by trying, but still...

For all of you out there in strange places, I wish you Godspeed! Remember-never give up; never give in!
(I feel like a character in "Galaxy Quest").

Monday, October 29, 2007

What's Your Wish?

Dreams are nothing more than wishes and a wish is just a dream you wish to come true. -from "You've Got Mail"

My daughter Elsa and I were talking in the kitchen after lunch on Friday and I noticed a piece of paper the size of a fortune cookie fortune on the floor. Well, it was a fortune cookie fortune which must have fallen out of one of my six or so junk drawers. Hmmm... What does it say, I wondered. "Your dearest wish will come true."
What is my dearest wish? Just as I was thinking this, Elsa said,"You know what I wish?" She did not see me pick up the little message. "You know how Lindsay Lohan and Brittany Spears have so much and don't do anything good with it? Well I wish that I had money enough to go on missions trips and not have to worry about how much it costs."
Now, we believe that God is the provider for everything, but the timing of this incident was so uncanny that I thought it would make a good premise for a story. Yes, it's been done-the wish thing, but this actually happening got me thinking...

What's your wish?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Crazy Love

Take away my trouble, take away my grief, take away my heartache, in the night like a thief...
He gives me love, love, love, love, crazy love-Van Morrison (girl singing version)

Crazy love doesn't make any sense. Noah Webster's 1828 dictionary defines crazy as broken, decrepit, weak or the state of being broken in mind. My emotions can be so intense that "crazy" seems to fit . So I keep them to myself, or maybe I throw some thoughts out there -like now- to see if there are others like me, looking for connection. C.S. Lewis said "I read to know I'm not alone." Technically I know I'm not alone. I've attended seminars, read books, and I pray. Yet, at times, I feel like an outsider in my world- face pressed against the glass barrier of disconnect.

It didn't make any sense for Jesus to die an excruciating and lonely death simply because he loved me. But it was the only way that I could ultimately connect with divine love.
It was crazy, really.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Tricia Goyer Blog Tour

My Life,Unscripted

If you are a mom of a teen-age girl, or any age girl, or know one, or was once one yourself then My Life,Unscripted is a must read.

Tricia Goyer reveals her life in heartbreaking detail in order to show the love and purpose that Jesus Christ intends for every girl. She uses scriptwriting as a tool for examining life,love and reality.

My sixteen year old daughter read it and said that she would recommend it to her friends- both Christian and nonchristian. It is a great conversation starter for those hard to broach subjects like sex,peer pressure and consequences. Tricia stresses the redemptive power of Jesus throughout the book and has a discussion guide at the end.

This book would be an excellent choice for a Bible study,retreat or to give as an introduction to having a relationship with Jesus Christ. He is the real Hero of her story.
How cool is that?

Tricia's website

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Loose Ends

It's hip to be square-Huey Lewis
I'm making an afghan out of granny squares. I have completed all of the 150 or so blocks of relative squareness and am in the final stages of sewing them together. This has taken much longer than my poor ADD brain is willing to accept but I refuse to abandon ship at this stage of the game. My children are excited for their mom to make a real live blanket thing and my husband- who is still waiting for an abandened quilt from ten years ago- is cheering me on. I am like the Little Engine that Could puffing toward the finish line. Out of nowhere the doubts creep in. Why did I choose these colors? What if the completed project looks stupid? What then? Then there are all those hundreds of embarrassing yarn ends sticking out the back that must be woven in to make the whole thing appear seamless. The afghan has no beginning and it has no end. Yeah,yeah,yeah...

Lord please help me to tie up the loose ends.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Perfect Day

Today I went to the Missouri Botanical Gardens with my husband and four youngest children. Sometimes everything just goes swimmingly and you just breathe deeply and thank God for his mercy and goodness. Ahh, thank you Lord.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

My Summer Vacation

We plan-and God steps in with another plan for us and he is all-wise and the most loving friend we have always helping us.-Nettie Fowler McCormick

Due to some unforseen business circumstances, my husband and I were unable to keep our vacation plans. We were anticipating two glorious weeks in my favorite place-Kennebunkport Maine- only to have to cancel at the last minute. Oh the agony,the weeping,the cries of "Why me?". Alas, there was no reason why our four children with perfectly good plane tickets should forgo their trip as well, so we enlisted the help of my parents to pick them up at the airport and be their loving guardians for a fortnight of cool New England weather (we were hitting some record highs in St.Louis). They gleefully accepted- well my Mom was gleeful as she loves to get the grandkids to herself. Come to think of it, Dad was pretty gleeful too as he loves any excuse to hang out with the kids-especially when it involves sightseeing,kayaking,hiking,and yes,dancing around the campfire- I have pictures.(Someday I will learn how to post pictures on this blog.)

Although I missed my vacation, I tried to use my time wisely so I learned to crochet granny squares. Even so, I have to say that my disappointment was heartfelt. After all,knowing that there would be no fried clams on the pier in Cape Porpoise is enough to send me(or anyone) into raptures of self pity.

Two weeks later, the children returned home. They were tired from travel but had had a wonderful time. On the plane they met two penguins who were on their way to the St.Louis Fair. The penguins were not tired as they were embarking on their own adventure and were wished godspeed by all of the passengers.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Hat

I like to felt. Old sweaters, thrift store finds, you name it- if it will shrink I'll felt it. What do I do with these shrunken wonders? Not a whole lot. I made my nephew a cute Christmas stocking a couple of years ago. That was it until I saw a felted hat pattern in Debbie Stoller's book "The Happy Hooker" crochet book.
This hat was called "Strut" and I should beware of anything that smacks of "proud"- I really should be Amish. I followed the directions and crocheted it to the obligatory size of a house and stuck it in a pot of boiling water to shrink. The directions said run it through the hot water cycle in the washing machine. Why do I have a problem with directions? It's like I can go so far but then have to think of a way to do it better. (sigh) I took it out of the pot and it hadn't shrunk very much, so after my children and husband took turns trying it on and striking all manner of Dr.Seuss poses, I threw it in the washing machine. At the end of the cycle it had shunk to the size of a bird's nest requiring drastic stretching and pulling and molding over bowls and vases to get it into a head shape. The end result was more Devo than Jackie O.

Next time I promise to follow the directions to the letter. To the best of my ability given who I am. Oh brother.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Running With Chickens

I was racing up the basement stairs hoping that the plastic bag holding the chicken wouldn't leak on the floor. I really didn't want to deal with extracting chicken juice out of the sand colored carpet. The bag was surprisingly heavy but I kept my speed up pretty well. As I neared the finish line- my kitchen- I started to laugh. My husband, hearing the commotion, asked what I was doing. I answered,
"I'm running with chickens."

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Philadelphia Story

Philadelphia freedom shine on me...-Elton John
The lobbyist's wife-that would be me- hits the streets of the city of brotherly love.

The American Legislator's Exchange Council, an organization of (you guessed it) legistlator's- of a primarily conservative persuasion- from across the U.S. converged last week in Philly. I was there. I had the privilege of being with some men and women who serve our state through elected positions. My husband and I toured the city and ate at some incredible restaurants. We got a bit of a feel for the historical significance and that sense of how time has passed. I wondered what John Adams would think of the modern Philadelphia.

I saw homelessness and people of all types who seemed spiritually lost and in need. I prayed. It is a temptation for me to dispair when confronted with so much hopelessness. I want everybody to have. To be at peace. To know Jesus.

God bless Philadelphia. Wrap her in your arms of love.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Butterfly Waltz

Saturday morning is the Farmer's Market. There are two small farms that I love to support. I buy beautiful organic chicken, eggs, and produce from Farrar Out Farm, which is run by a lovely young couple, Bryan and Christine Truemper and I get the most gorgeous heirloom vegetables from Ron at On the Wind farm. While I'm there I remind myself to soak in the beauty and artistry that is produced by these hardworking people. I remember to bring my own bags for once, but not a pen, which they so kindly offer without my having to ask. I bask in the feeling of community- of being connected to something good and wholesome.

Later I pull into my driveway. I'm listening to Strauss' Blue Danube Waltz, better known as the Skater's Waltz, on the classical station. It seems a strange choice for a gorgeous Summer day, but I see a monarch butterfly swooping and landing on flowers in perfect time- a dance choreographed by God. Just for me.

May the Lord bless you.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Cheryl Plain and Tall

I was reading "Renovating Becky Miller" by Sharon Hinck and decided to try a paragraph in her style. I was quicky reminded why Sharon is a multi-published author. I did have some fun... Here goes...

She looked at the dirt underneath her fingernails and wondered why she had boarded that train headed to the midwest. She had left her beloved Maine seacoast behind,perhaps forever. To make matters worse, the man seemed uncommunicative and the children had been without a mother for so long that it seemed impossible to reach them. She pitched the shovel once again into the hard earth, wriggling it back and forth to loosen the clay from the rock that was so abundant. Why was life so hard? All she wanted was a husband to love and to be a mother to the two little waifs that needed nurturing, a mother's touch. How long would it take before she was accepted? She was running out of faith. "Break up the fallow ground" said a voice from somewhere deep inside. "I'm trying" she breathed, brushing a few strands of hair out of her hazel eyes. "I'm trying".

Friday, July 13, 2007

Disney Girls

"Fantasy world and Disney girls are comin' back."-Cass Elliot
Since I've come back from Disney World, I've spent some time pondering what it's all about. Maybe I'm just in recovery from all of the driving, walking, crowds and plain old humanity.

Here are my conclusions.

Disney World is not Tiffany's. Though you can spend about as much money there.

Like Tiffany's, nothing really bad can happen at Disney World.
Unless you count the last time we were there and Chip n' Dale BOTH snubbed my super sensitive 10 year old Rachael at breakfast with the whole gang by refusing point-blank to sign her autograph book. As Disney would have it, Minnie, ever on the lookout for ten year olds traumatized by evil rodents, gathered Mickey and Goofy, who are much higher on the food chain, to pose for pictures. Her face glistened with joy through the tears. To this day Minnie has a special place in her heart.

We all long to be special.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Back from Disney!

There's no place like home. There's no place like home. There's no place like home. Yes, Dorothy has returned from OZ, or in my case Disney World. My parents really love their grandchildren. They do. So they gave us all- my brother, two sisters and their families one week of Disney World and Universal Studios theme parks for a big family reunion/vacation.

Since we were the only mid-westerners- thanks to me who married a boy from St.Louis- we decided to drive, stopping first in South Walton beach for a couple of days. Our Ford Freestyle seats seven- semi-uncomfortably, so we borrowed one of those containers that straps onto the roof to store luggage and who-knows-what. I called it "the Griswald", which my daughter shortened to "Gary"- I have no idea why. It made our silver vehicle super easy to spot in those crowded parking lots.

It's too early for me to be making any important reflections on this trip, so I will save any deep points for another time. Suffice it to say- I'm home.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

Lakeside Holiday

One of my husband's clients had their annual convention at the Lake of the Ozarks. As we do every year, we packed up the car and kids- all five this year- and headed to one of the largest manmade lakes in the world for three days of relaxation at The Lodge of the 4 Seasons resort.
I brought along "The Tale of Hilltop Farm", a charming read about Beatrix Potter and my latest crocheting project called "Allegheny Moon Mobius"(I'm not kidding). A mobius is actually another word for cowl, a word I've always disliked, so I'm going with mobius from now on- except I will still have to use the word cowl to explain mobius- which defeats the purpose. I really don't think anyone will ask me if I'm wearing a cowl or a mobius so I'm safe either way. Not that any danger was looming. Not that I'm aware of.

I'm going to save all of the political intrigue and drama for my madeup, imaginary novel "The Lobbyist's Wife" which I'm planning to write sometime in the next ten years. Nobody is holding their breath.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Small Fish

Thought for the day: "We are damaged goods but God is restoring us to wholeness." -Stuart McCallister

I feel like I'm a participant in a swim competition. At first I'm the eager minnow on the platform ready to go. The starting gun goes off and I fling myself forward. I slip effortlessly into the cool water and stay under as long as I can to maximize my perfect entry. I surface and begin to hit my stride. I'm feeling pretty good about myself. Then I look around at the other swimmers. I can tell that they want to win. Really badly. I want to win too, but I start to slip as I remember that they have been trained by highly skilled Russian coaches and I have only had myself and the frogs at the pond back home. What's the use? I can't compete with this. I fall further and further behind.

I falter when I look around and compare myself to others. I may be perfectly happy with my little accomplishments and victories, but as soon as I start to look around I lose my momentum. My personal best isn't good enough. I need to remind myself that nobody's personal best is good enough. Many winners achieve the prize only to say. "So what?".

Forgive me Lord for taking my eyes off You. You are the ultimate prize. Help me to just keep swimming.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Stationary Girl

I just realized that I haven't exercised in, well, I can't remember when. That's bad, isn't it? Yikes. I was reading Camy Tang's blog,"The Writing Sensei", and she had all these great tips on how to exercise for writers who are lazy. She wasn't pointing fingers or anything, but it got me thinking. And then I started to panic. Was I mistaken in blaming perimenopause for my blahness and fog? Could it be that I just haven't gotten off my fat,lazy butt and broken a sweat? Ever since my teenage girls,Rachael and Elsa,got their licenses I have been more than happy to let them taxi the twins and Joshua to their activities. This has enabled me to stay home and crochet. Not that I don't do anything else. I also surf the net for cool yarn. And I planted a few herbs that had gotten way past spindley. I hope they make it.

Okay. I purpose in my heart to move it, move it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Stuck in the Middle

Saggy middles, middle age, middle america... Whatever... middle is just a goofy word. That's where I seem to get stuck. Losing my thought mid-sentence.

It can be hard to get past the middle of a project. Especially one that requires patience, or seems to stretch out endlessly, like the stole that I'm crocheting entitled "Irish Mist Stole". With such a romantic title I envisioned hours of crocheting contentment. A virtual Irish Mist making fantasy. I'm about halfway to the finish line and it's nice, but not exactly shamrocks and leprechauns, not that I'd want the leprechauns.

For me, the middle can be a place where failures or abandoned projects flash before me, like mocking leprechauns reminding me of a trail of mistakes made in the past. That's when I need to remember a word spoken to me twenty years ago-"Don't look back at the past and all it's flack." That's all I can remember, but I think it's wisdom.

Saturday, May 12, 2007


I am a pushover for a good title. Even not so good ones. I always wonder "now what made them choose that?". I know that I'm not alone, judging from all of the names of things out there. Adam's first job, before he had to get a real one was naming the animals. I can imagine the interview with Barbara Walters. "Now Adam, why exactly did you name this one cow?". Adam replies,"Duh! Look at it for goodness sake."

Pride and Prejudice's working title was "First Impressions". While that was a perfectly good name, it lacked the sneer and distain that would pass between Elizabeth Bennett and Mr.You-know-who upon meeting. One title is benign,while the other exudes passion.

I think it's interesting how famous authors have theme titles, you expect John Grisham's titles to always be "The _______". My own in-the-style-of J.G. novel would be called "The Lobbyist's Wife", based on my life with lots of scary lifethreatening stuff mixed in.

Okay. You get the point. Titles matter. Why then did I choose "The Big Book of Dishcloths" over "Dishcloths with Heart"?

Just wondering.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

My Random Life

My famous author friend, Sharon Hinck, tagged me to write 8 random things about my so called life. How could I refuse? Will you play along? Big blessings to you!

8 random things

First, these are the rules:
1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
4. Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged, and to read your blog.

1. I am so computer illiterate that I had to have my 16 year old daughter paste the rules to this game for me.

2. I was voted "most quietest" in highschool... Why not "most funnest"???

3. I've had 4 home births. One of which produced a surprise- twins! (I was in very big-and I mean BIG denial.)

4. I once sleep-walked into a stranger's room in a hotel. I was dreaming that the twins needed me... I don't know who was more surprised- the man, the bell-hop, me, or my husband who woke up to find me banging on the door that had locked behind me!!

5. I have a collection of enamel on copper art purchased on ebay.

6. When I was in Paris, my husband and I were eating escargot and the snail slipped out of the holder thing and catapulted, hitting a very nice table of Japanese people,it then bounced off the table, and rolled across the floor.

7. I can make soap. Unfortunately, I am allergic.

8. I have expressed my concern about the state of the food chain to U.S.Senators, state senators, representitives and furniture store workers. All yielding about the same results....

Well, there you have it. Sadly, I need to advertise for blogger friends who would be willing to play this game. Anyone? Anyone? I promise to read each and every blog. God bless you.


Sunday, May 6, 2007

Grounds for Divorce

We're out of coffee. Which in our household is- Grounds for Divorce! Actually, I thought that would make a great title for a book. It could be a story about a cute barrista whose husband leaves her for somebody else- or maybe she just forgot to bring home the coffee...

It's Sunday morning. I'd better run to the store and save my marriage before church.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Time/What's Become of Me?

I have a fear of being bored. Having nothing to do. Which is amazing considering that I can waste more time than anyone I know. Say pro-cras-tin-a-tor... I think the dictionary actually mentions my name in the definition. For as long as I can remember I have armed myself with books, magazines, notebooks and pens as a safety net in case of unforeseen time on my hands. So what's the point? I'm just procrastinating. I have to take my car to the shop and I'm imagining all of the free time stretching out before me. I'd better go pack my bags...

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Open Heart Insert Spirit

I had some time last week to fast, pray, and do battle in the Spirit. I was able to stay home and read my bible, pray and listen to Christian radio programs. It's always interesting to see what the Lord will reveal through his word and what he will impress on my spirit and heart. If he confirms that with a word from Charles Stanley or Chuck Swindoll- I always mix those guys up- or Ravi Zacharias or June Hunt, then I feel that I'm on the right track.

The Lord seemed to be trying to show me that it was by his mercy that I have come to know him and that it was He who replaced my heart of stone with a heart of flesh and He put his Spirit in me. It was not by my own righteousness. Therefore, he can and will draw loved ones and others to him. That realization lifted a burden and allowed my faith to spring forth. Later that day June Hunt read this scripture:

Ezekiel 36:26,27
A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgements, and do them.

We can't do open heart surgery on ourselves or anyone else. He can and will. Because he loves us so much. I know he does.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Sunset Behind a Desk

When David and I were in Cabo the consierge recommended a restaurant called "Mona Lisa's". "The view is spectacular." he said. Even the taxi driver remarked about how beautiful it was. They weren't kidding, the place was set like a princess cut diamond on top of a cliff overlooking the ocean and we were just in time for the famous sunset. The waiter showed us to our table and to my dismay it was INSIDE!! I looked at my usually oh-so-assertive husband to protest but he just sat down. I tried to look at the bright side- I wouldn't be getting chilly from those ocean breezes. I do hate being cold...except that it was really quite lovely out there, perfect in fact. "Shouldn't we be at one of those cute little tables overlooking the ocean?" I wondered. Instead I was behind one of those waiter's station desk things, with no view whatsoever. David seemed fine with it and was perusing the menu with the light from the computer monitor illuminating his head. But I didn't say anything.

It is a mistake in Cabo to ask the waiter for a recommendation because they all recommend the same thing -shrimp and lobster- the most expensive thing on the menu and they are so enthusiastic that you feel badly if you don't get it. So I substituted steak for the pacific lobster,which I really don't like, and there I was, eating food that I didn't really want at a table that was a big disappointment. I am ashamed to say that we started to bicker. Finally I said "And I am not going to spend another sunset behind a desk!!". "Why didn't you say something?" he said "We could have waited for a table out there." He admitted that he gets tired of fighting for things in his line of work and didn't feel like working to get a better table. Oh.

By this time all the sunsetters had cleared out and we ate our dessert under the stars listening to the ocean waves.

Saturday, March 24, 2007


In my last post I wrote about packing for my vacation in "Cabo St Lucas" and when I got there I realized how geographically challenged I am, because the signs all said Cabo San Lucas. My point is I had no idea where we were going, as I leave the details to my husband, who is good at that sort of thing. He has to be if we are ever to get anywhere.

Our resort was between Cabo and San Jose, and offered what we were seeking most- tropical beauty and an oasis far away from my husband's clients. All of the beauty and distance could not stop us from worrying about our five children, who are are at warious stages of life. Our conversations would turn to wondering how they were doing etc... Over and over.

Cabo is a lovely place. A fine piece of Earth's real estate. But someday I will go to the most amazing place where my Father is waiting for me. In fact His word says that He is thinking of me nonstop. And you too.

We're home. It's great to be home.

Thursday, March 15, 2007


I'm headed for Cabo St Lucas tomorrow- actually in a few hours. I will forget something very obvious, I'm sure. But I will have my new crochet books, hooks, and beads. I want to try crocheting with wire. I should have bought nice, new, white tee-shirts, but instead my car turned into the Hobby Lobby craft store...

Coincidentally, I received my Real Simple Travel issue today and I shared with David, my husband, that one of the golf courses in Cabo was deemed "worth the greens fee". He said that we were staying there but wasn't taking his clubs because he didn't want to spend time away from me, which is so sweet it brings a tear to my eye.

I'm still taking my crocheting stuff.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


I am learning to crochet. Whenever my life seems too wacky or out of control I take up a new craft. That said, I am making a very glamorous wrap out of a purple "plush,trendy yarn" perfect for all of my projects- so says the description on the package. So far I have learned two important lessons.

Believe the Directions:
When they say "repeat rows 2 through 5" they mean it. And just because 3 and 4 seem to be the same as 1 and 2, do not be tempted to skip any rows, because, after about a thousand stitches you will realize that you have really messed up. Do not make matters worse by pretending that it's not that noticible. It is and it will bug you for the life of the project. Do not pretend that you are Amish and that the mistake was intentional in order to take away the "proud factor". They do this in their quilts on purpose for that reason. I have also read that some of their "mistakes" are quite lovely. I have come to realize that even without glaring mistakes, I would not be in any great danger of becoming too proud of my work.

Guage Matters:
"Correct guage is the difference between a treasured heirloom and a yardsale bargain." says Donna Kooler, author of "The Encyclopedia of Crochet". Guage is basically the number of stitches per square inch of crochet. "Take time to check your guage" is often written like this:TAKE TIME TO CHECK YOUR GUAGE. So why did I think that was optional? When I held up my purple stole to show my husband, he asked me if I were crocheting Barney the Dinosaur.

According to Family Circle's "Easy Crochet" magazine, fixing mistakes is easy. "Simply remove the hook from the work and pull out the stitches until the error is removed. Establish where you are in your pattern and continue crocheting from that point." It's a little like time travel. Go back to where the mistake occurred, remove it, and it's like it never happened. It's not really that easy, but how many fresh starts do we get in life? Taking care of mistakes and doing the right thing may seem painful at the time, but in the end it will be worth it. Sadly, it is too late for Barney...

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

What's Inside?

I love the St.Louis Art Museum. My eleven year old son Joshua and I have been "regulars" ever since my daughter,Rachael,started a class at Washington University. We drop her off and head for the museum. We know the security guards and the cafe workers. We know when they move things around-"Hey, where's the Degas dancer??". They move things around a lot. We feel free to give our opinions. "I think the Chagall works better in the other room." And then we go to the coffee shop and get a muffin.
Sometimes we get to see workers unload a truck of wooden crates-art waiting to be displayed on walls that have been prepared specifically for each piece.
Plain wooden crates. What's inside I wonder. Beauty to delight my eyes? The pain of a primitive culture in transition? Beauty or ashes. Life or death. Someday our plain crates will be opened and what's inside will be revealed. The Creator will look upon us. He is preparing a place. I am reminded that it's what's inside that counts.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Without Power

I've been without power since Saturday. Literally and figuratively. Just feeling tired and middle aged. Not that it does any good to complain about age... I wish I could say "that's when I realized that I needed to get back in 'The Word'." Did I get my Bible out and receive fresh nourishment from God himself? No. When I'm discouraged I run helter skelter searching for comfort and escape. I crocheted two scarves and I haven't picked up a crochet hook since junior high. I even read my daughter's copy of In Touch magazine to see what the celebrities were wearing! I didn't see any crocheted scarves... They need Jesus, but so do I. So do I.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Letting Go

Letting go. So often that means a heart attitude, a willingness to release something that I have been holding on to such as unforgiveness, anger or bitterness. Sometimes I hang on with clenched fists, fingers coiled tightly around some object or idea like a little one holding on to the string of a kite on a windy day.

Our family received news through a Christmas letter that friends of ours, Stacey and Erich Pratt lost their precious two year old boy Luke to a drowning accident this past summer. The letter alerted you immediately to the tragedy by a picture of Luke with 2004-2006 written under his name-Luke Alyn Pratt. My first thought was that maybe there was some other explanation, some other reason for those dates, but upon reading the letter, there was no mistake. Erich kindly informed all of us on their Christmas list what had happened. How their little one was last seen throwing a baseball- wearing the baseball glove on the wrong hand- and giggling. Erich went on to say that God has used Luke's short life in countless ways. Teens in the church youth group were reminded of their mortality and many have given their lives to Jesus as a result. A couple whose marriage was in trouble started going to church together and the list goes on. In this age of financial concerns- the cost of college, etc.- the Pratts are unusual. They have dared to have as many children as God would give (and Stacey's petite body can handle). Luke was eight of nine beautiful children. Andrew, the baby was two months old when his big brother went to be with the Lord. They are determined to let God use this loss in whatever manner He chooses- without anger, without bitterness. They are looking ahead. Love has risk. Sometimes we have to let go and trust God. Sometimes that's all we can do.