just me lexi

i am a lover of all things beautiful in a relentless pursuit of art, ideas, projects, words, photos and the master Artist. i hope to share all my findings here...

Monday, April 23, 2018

We live our lives in layers


We live our lives in layers.

I walked through the airport a few weeks ago all layered up.  Phone in hand, I was walking with a purpose, eyes open and unseeing.  I was going on a trip to take a breath.  To slow down.  I was getting away with plans to fall in love with life again.  I wanted to have an affair with the present.  I wanted it to sweep me off my feet and learn to lay in its embrace.

I meant to pack ever so simply--sundresses only.  But somehow I arrived at the airport with 3 oversized bags full of clothes for every occasion, a laptop, camera, phone and over a DOZEN books.  How embarrassing.  How does this happen?  How do my decisions get so blurry?  How do my intentions get so buried?  Here I was--taking a just me trip to Florida to see friends who always fill my cup.  I was on my way to see big water on beaches that would open me up.  But standing there on the sidewalk outside the airport struggling with my bags--I realized that in order to craft the kind of trip I truly wanted, I'd have to leave my cozy layers behind.  I'd have to meet the eyes of the people around me.  I had to choose right then to turn with curiousity when someone spoke my name.  I must shrug the hurry and hustle off my shoulders and let my bare skin taste everything around me.  Inspiration had to start here--now--or it never would.  The problem is, wherever I go--I take me along.  My comfy layers were sure to follow me to Florida if I wasn't careful.  I had to check the self protection right there if I wanted to come home any different.  Slowly I could feel the layers fall away.  I checked my bag and got a little lighter.  I put my phone down and almost floated away.  I stood in line--eyes wide open, face vulnerable and I dared to look and see the people next to me.

Just then I noticed the woman in line just ahead of me.  Her name was Pamela and she had very wrinkly elbows.  I wondered when my elbows would begin to wrinkle and then I wondered about how wisely I was spending the time I have in my skin. I wouldn't have seen her and wondered anything if I had fallen into my phone, like the rabbit hole it is.

I headed into meet the TSA and all the time resisted the urge to hurry because honestly--I had plenty of time.  I generally have plenty of time.  Hurry isn't always necessary.  But it's contagious and we pass it on to one another.   I had to keep myself from pushing to the front of the lines out of ugly habit. Why do line's encourage impatience?  So I let people go ahead and noted the surprise on their faces.  Eye contact was rare-all eyes were down on devices.  What are we all afraid of?  A few minutes of silence and still?  Maybe this is just the medicine we need.  I resisted the stubborn urge to take my phone out to steal a look--my fingers needed a hit.  "Hi, I'm Lexi and I'm an i-phone junky."  Instead of giving in to the phone on fire in my bag--when people talked to me--I talked back to them.  I smiled at the people waiting with me.  Without a busy baby in my arms the whole wide world looked brand new.  I missed my baby boy at home and borrowed his eyes for just a minute.  I bet this is how he sees every day--big and wild and inviting.

I noticed how much margin was mine.  I was wealthy in time and the feeling sent a shiver up my spine.

With my new perspective I was overwhelmed with how crazy/fun people were to look at.  My flowy green pants and turquoise jewelry took their place in the collage of clothes.  Most people seemed to be dressed for success and marathons.  There were tall girls waiting to board in sports gear layered under backpacks and tiny girls sporting poms and hair bows.  I saw so many immaculate men with important looking watches.  There was an unshaven man to my left with crazy hair, hidden in a hoodie.  I walked and looked and tried not to gape.  There were moms in heels.  Moms in crocs.  Moms in ponytails and suit jackets.  So many freckles.  All these lives I'll never know.  So much story.  Normally right this minute I'd be a million miles from here, lost in my phone-settling safely into social media--immune to the present, just scrolling through pictures and looking at interesting things far away when there were interesting things right there in front of me.

A little boy tugged on his mommas arm to tell her how long his device would stay charged.  He was proud to know the information down to the minute.  I felt sad for him because maybe he was meant to know other things in that intimate way.  Say the same smart sandy haired boy was watching for the very minute the apricot tree in his backyard bloomed.  What if he memorized how many days there was between bloom and leaf--what would a shift like this mean to the world?  Perhaps if his mind (and mine) had more time to wonder--instead of being dazzled by battery life or mindcraft--he would know what it means for spring when the buzzard flies overhead.  Maybe he would have a knack for finding morel mushrooms?  Instead he fills his little head with how many minutes he can look into a little black square and be entertained.  We all do.  And we've named it progress.

I saw a little brown boy with curly hair--looking as near to perfect as I've ever seen.  Our eyes met because I was staring.  He startled me with a cheery hello.  We were two of the few with our eyes up.  I smiled my hi and looked away.  My hope was restored in humanity.  One polite child and I felt like we'd all be okay.  My eyes flitted from person to person--taking it all in.  I wondered if people have any idea how beautiful they are.  They are breathtaking.  I had the urge to tell them.  Without my layers on, I could feel all the energy swirling and I could see their soul sparks.  Suddenly the whole room was a firecracker--full of human spark and flash.  Big bursts and small ones.  I wish I had the kind of time to tell each person what I saw in them that day.  I realized that this was really weird thought and yet--I kinda wished I knew what people saw when they looked at me.  I saw sadness in shoulders.  I saw hurry in feet.  I saw so many restless eyes and painted lips.  I saw quick smiles transform faces.  Smiles are a happy kind of epidemic that spreads to all that make eye contact.  I caught one and was infected.  I saw furrowed eyebrows and fluttering lashes.  When the lonely brown gentleman raised his eyes to meet mine I got a little jolt and thought, "Oh!  Well, there ya are!"  It's totally wild how no one looks the same--though we all seem to be trying to match the names of our purses and the roll of our jeans.

We live bundled up in layers for storms that never come at all.  There are few things on this earth more ridiculous than a snowsuit in summer.  But we layer up anyway--living our lives for just in cases.  We only slip our layers off every once in awhile--if we must.  Otherwise, we walk through airports and work spaces and coffee shops--never making contact.  Our phones and screens and TVs insulate us and slip over our eyes so we can't see.  Numb is blind--so we are insulated from pain and joy alike.  We are so busy.  busy.  busy.  TV, music, social media, text, emails-- these things swallow our days.  Whatever happened to tinkering and thinking? Netflix steals our hours and somehow makes us believe our moments are scarce and not our own.  So we rush around and order our groceries and subscribe to everything that promises faster.

As I lost my layers my eyes were wide in seeing.  My ears were perked in listening.  With my insulation gone, I could feel the spark or chill of all the souls I passed.  I felt the warmth coming off of some people--pulling me in and I felt the frosty air blow off some too.  I wondered which was me...

I resolved to take a chance and do my entire trip--6 days, layer free--vulnerable to whatever the present held for me.  6 days sounded like the perfect amount of time to erase the idea of interruption.  Joy, pain, action, empathy, or otherwise--I decided I would just take it as it came.  It would be a hard and holy work--shedding my self protection.  What if an unexpected storm blew my way?  Maybe I'd freeze....or maybe I'd just feel.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Story & Song



I'm currently in the trenches of parenting--making memories...and mistakes.  I have a sense that we are currently living the "good old days" with all three kids still at home.  Our unique age spread means we are changing diapers, doing homecoming hair and forgetting to bring the soccer snacks--sometimes all in one day.

Perspective is not easy to find when one is knee deep in the thick of it.

Earlier this week I heard an amazing story of an African tribe--still alive.  Strangely, in the Himba tribe, they count the birth date of the children, not from the day they are born or concieved but from the very day the mother decides to have the child.

So when a Himba woman decides to have a child, she goes off and sits under a tree by herself and listens until she can hear the song of the child who wants to come.

After she's heard the song of this child, she returns to the man who will be the child's father, and teaches him the song.

When they concieve the child, they sing the song of the child as a way of inviting the child to them.

When the mother becomes pregnant, she teaches that child's song to the midwies and the old women of the village so that when the child is born, the old women and the people gather around the baby and sing the song to welcome the child to the earth.

As the child grows, the other villagers are taught the child's song.  If the child falls or gets hurt, someone picks up the child and sings his song to him.  When the child does something wonderful, or goes through the rites of puberty--as a way of honoring them-- the people of the village sing his song to him.

In the Himba marriage ceremony, the bride and groom's songs are sung, together.

In the Himba tribe there is one other occasion when the child's song is is sung.  If someone in the Himba tribe commits a crime or does something at odds with the Himba social norms, the villagers call him or her into the center of the village and the community forms a circle around the tribesperson.  Then they sing their birth song to them.  The Himba views correction not as a punishment, but as love and remembrance of identity.  They believe when you remember your own song, you will have no desire or need to do anything that would hurt another. 

And finally--when the someone from the Himba tribe is lying on their bed, ready to die, all the villagers that know their song come and sing, for the last time, that person's song.   

This faraway story captured my heart.

I can't stop thinking about it.

Me and mine are ever so different from the Himba tribe but in some ways we are surprisingly the same.  As I thought more about my own tribe and my brand of motherhood, my heart was filled with hallulujah.

In the literal sense, each of my babies have a 'welcome to the world' song.  We've swaddled them in song since the first day of their lives.  (I made Eric pack our cd player and I was the new mother playing music in the hospital room).  Jaeda's song was Ella Fitzgerald's Blue Skies and Rhett's was Sweet Sweet Baby by Michelle Featherstone and from day one Sully's song has been Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley.  We've sung these songs over them to calm and comfort them.  From the very start, music has filled our home because, music changes everything.

Somewhere along the way our babies started singing back to us.  They each came with a specific song to sing to the world around them.  A song of laughter and fun and spirited giggles.  A song of humor and stubbornness and story.  As their momma, I learned their music and celebrated the good and saw the bad.  I memorized their strengths and took a long look at their weaknesses.

My Jaeda-girl's song is strong.  Opinionated.  She loves hard and loyaly and feels everything ever so intensely.  She is insightful and full of art and music and written words.  She wrestles with fear and other people's harsh judgements.  She is a creator and justice seeker.

My Wonderboy sings a joyful song.  He is a happy-ness bringer.  Wherever he goes he spills words and ideas and wonder.  He is grateful and sunny and curious.  He consumes knowledge and loves a challenge.  He is relentless but vulnerable to the sting of angry words.  He can be proud and over-honest.  He struggles when the spotlight isn't turned on him.

My Lionman is still teaching us his song.  But oh does he ROAR!  He is an ever-moving, ever-chasing, ever-learning little moonbeam.  I have still have so much to learn about each of them.  And yet everything they have shown me, I have memorized.

The right song changes everything.  Music is powerful.  The music they make is my favorite.


We are not the Himba tribe but none-the-less, I see pieces and parts of the Himba's song-centric parenting echoed in our lives.

Once when Jaeda was struggling hard with a cross-country move, we declared one Saturday Jaeda day.  We looked through pictures of her as a baby and a child and told stories about her and ate all her favoirtes.  We reminded her who she was.  Once she remembered, nothing looked as scary.  Not even a new school in a new state.

When our baby Sully arrived we noticed our Wonderboy went a little quiet.  When Wonderboy gets quiet something is deeply wrong.  We know this because we know him.  A Wonderboy day was in order.  A day where we looked at his baby pictures and watched his home videos and remembered him in a hundred tiny ways all day.

A particuarly Himba-like part of our parenting has always included introducing our kids to people who learned them.
People who love them.
People who know them.
People who call them back to themselves when they get lost.
People who call them up to more when they lose heart.
These people SEE them.
These people love us all boldly enough to speak into our lives and say, "You look like yourself, but you are acting like someone else."
This is our tribe.

We are ever adding to the tribe.  One's tribe never stops growing.  We have recently found lost parts of our tribe in our new little midwest town.  I cannot tell you how good it feels to sit across from someone who snuggles your baby, laughs at your wordy 10 year old and truly and completely SEES your teenager (and loves them still).  These newfound tribeswomen are people who are an important part of our everydays.  They say 'me too' when tears fall over teen age mistakes.  These Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon friends are the ones who take turns chasing the baby when I've grown tired--they are the same ones who celebrate my ten year old's triumphs.  These are our people.  We are learning their songs and we sing them ours. 

Story stirs me.

The Himba story shook me.  And made me want to be more.  Made me want to lean in and listen to the songs around me...my kids and everyone else's too.  This story gave me the gift of new sight.  Perspective.

In times of celebration and in times of turmoil I want to help my kids recall their song and themselves.

I want to practice remembering my own music when it's tempting to forget.

I want to be firmly planted in a tribe that loves each other like the Himba--constantly calling each other up to who we are born to be.

I want to take this story with me and bury it deep into my everyday.  I want to plant some Himba wisdom in my life and stand back and see how it grows.


Friday, February 9, 2018

shelter


I have mirrors hanging in my house and poetry written on my windows,

both for the same reason--

so I can see myself.

Yesterday on the largest window in my home, 

I scribbled the words,


"I felt it shelter to speak to you".  

--Emily Dickinson


I left Emily's words there, 

to better see 

me.


I mostly see the absence of myself in Emily's words on my window each time I walk past.  

Truth is: I am rarely the shelter and am often the tempest.

I am the storm instead of the safe place.

Often I bring honesty and opinion and forget to bring subtilty and tenderness.

I live my life with an umph and urgency that doesn't leave alot of space for others.

But I so want to be a shelter...


The whole wide world is wild and a bit rowdy.

Crazy things happen everyday.

Big bursts and small ones.

Lives are changed and lunches made.

Self control is lost and so are keys.

I want to be a shelter from it all.  

For my kids and my partner.

For my friends and neighbors.

For my sisters and my people  (and also anyone who needs it.)

But it's beyond me.


A shelter doesn't just magically come into existence.

Someone has to build it.

Someone strong.

I happen to know a builder.

He's been offering for awhile to take me and make me something new.

He wants to redeem all my pieces and parts and make me into something that can somehow be used...

He looks at me with some imagination.

He sees the unique parts that only belong to me...the beautiful ones I try to cling to.  

He sees all my lost and broken bits... and He thinks he can use those too.

He longs to make a shelter out of me--

a shelter for not only my children but also the cast-offs that no one wants to claim.

He wants to come in and take my crazy and make me cozy.

He wants to make me both a home for my own and those who've never known home.

Right now I look more like a junkyard of stray dreams and half-started things.  

I am all and sundry. 

Odds and ends.

I'm a wistful pile of rubble.

The Creator-God promises He can move in and make sense of it all.  


So much for making something of myself...

I'm quite relieved to find I'm not alone at this work.

I often get confused and think the point is to become more like me

when this whole life is about looking more like Him.  

Shelter.

Helper.

Home.

Friday, February 2, 2018

At the table



The new year lays before me like untrodden snow.

To take the first step is to mar the untouched thing.

Beginning feels holy and important.

I sidestep the starting and chase down distraction.

I begin gathering my home.

I spend my January reading other people's books instead of writing my own...

I cross the cold days off the calendar one by one and trade them for a clean house and folded laundry.

I rearrange furniture until I'm satisfied (I'm never satisfied) and then Feburary 1st arrives and shakes me awake.

2018's chapter one is already done.

It's past time to begin.

Better now than then never.

It's okay if the first few steps are shaky.

(Shaky steps take you where you need to go too.)

This year will be the year that I claim my spot at the table.  If there is no room I will pull up a chair.  I will show up nervous and awkward and without any answers.  Bringing only what I've got.

Me.

I have ideas.

I bring creativity.

I can tie words around just about any old thing.

I can't show up emptyhanded (and my guess is neither can you).

I always show up with enthusiasm and hardwork.

Empathy is my specialty and making something of nothing is my favorite recipe.

This is the year I will show up with what I have and share what I've been given: the gifts I was born into (my inheritance).

Why is it so hard to believe there is a place for (even) me at the table?

Why does my 35 year old voice shake when I join the conversation?

If all of life is a long table--I want to learn to make place cards for every single of us so not one person will live another day doubting whether or not they belong.

Place cards are my favorite.  They have the most delicate way of saying YOU ARE WANTED.



When I see my name written on a tiny bit of paper in front of a chair my heart thrills just a little and only then do I stop wondering if what I have to bring is essential AND JUST SIT DOWN.

If there is room for me and my mess at this table then there is room for you and yours.

You & me...We belong here.

I'm bringing me (and that's enough).









Thursday, February 6, 2014

my mommahood





a few years back, i found myself surrounded by amazing mommas.  they were all good at things like making appointments (and keeping them), returning library books and looking sane in the pre-school pick up line.  i, mistakenly, measured my momma success by their amazing strengths...and i fell short.  so somewhere along the way, i cast my own crazy/creative strengths aside and went to work on my weaknesses.  

i tried harder.  

i tried replacing finger painting with worksheets.  i stopped park hopping and picked up flash cards.  i bought daily planners by the dozen.  i attempted to schedule our previously impulsive little life...

i ended up discouraged...

during that time, i managed to beat myself up pretty good.  i was going weeks without doing fun things and months without dabbling in creativity.  i spent years chastising myself for being who i was created to be...

right around that time, something about the grace my God offered me started to change my mind about my mommahood.  it finally occurred to me that, it didn't have to be about trying harder...it was just about asking Him who i was, opening my hands to accept what was given to me and asking for forgiveness for my failings.  

and things started to change...slowly.  i started to find myself as a momma.  i started making messes with my kiddos...big impractical ones.  i started dancing silly in the car and generally driving with the windows down.  i threw big birthday parties and a few very un-birthday parties.  i began dragging creativity into everywhere...even chore lists.  i started conversations that i'm pretty sure weren't happening in all the other mini vans.  i broke all the rules...not on purpose--but just because it's how i love.

somewhere amidst my self discovery, i created my momma creed.  it went something like this:

"i want to raise passionate learners and world changers who love God and others."

once i  narrowed down my goal for mommahood it was easier to rearrange my life to make it happen. 

it was freeing.

these days my mommahood looks less like anyone else's and more like my own.  i feel a little more at home as a momma--less worried about being everything and more focused on offering my something. my love for my kiddos is deeply rooted in my Father's love for me.  i know mommahood is nothing to be figured out and there is never a right way--but i think i've discovered that my relationship with my Father changes my mommahood in remarkable ways.  when i'm close to Him i am more okay with me and i generally have more to offer those 2 firecrackers of mine and the many mommas that surround me.  when i see us all as His children it's easy to see that other mommas received different gifts than i did...and it's okay if i don't measure up to them--all our gifts are good.  if you use yours and i use mine, then the world will be just as it should be:)

the truth is, i will always fail in the punctuality department.  i have a propensity to make up rash and extreme punishments that are impossible to follow through on("no computer til after christmas!"). i'm not a great morning momma--no creativity til after coffee.  sometimes i yell. my kids watch far more tv then i'd like.  my house is only clean for minutes at a time.  i forget more dental appointments then i'd like to admit.  i overthink little things.  i have a tendency to make lessons out of flying birds and pretty sunsets.  i have this habit of starting things...and turns out, being myself makes me look crazy in the company of other mommas...but i am so much more alive to my kiddos.  and that's what this mommahood is all about, right?  them?  so nevermind the stares...

my kids will never have everything but they will get all of me.  they will get the messy parts and the holy ones--they will hear of the lessons i've learned and the ones i'm currently learning.  they will get a front row seat to creativity and most likely have several tardy slips each semester.  my kiddos will benefit from the best of me...and learn to have grace for the worst of me...and when they are grown, they will know...i gave it my all.




Monday, January 13, 2014

sheer gift





new year.  two words.  


sheer gift.

sheer-
adjective
1. nothing other than;  unmitigated.
synonyms: utter complete, absolute, total, pure, downright, out-and-out, thorough.

gift-
noun
1. a thing given willingly to someone without payment; a present.
synonyms: present handout donation, offering, bestowal, bonus, award, endownment

2. a natural ability or talent
synonyms: talent, flair, apitude, facility, knack, bent, ability, expertise, capacity, capability


i divorced new year resolutions last year.  new year's resolutions reek of should's and would's and i'd rather live a life free of that flavor of things.  i replaced resolutions with a theme...last year's theme added so much life to me i couldn't help but come up with another.  It took me awhile to alight upon an idea i wanted to carry with me for such a long journey through spring and summer and fall and back to winter again.  and then i read romans 4 and i knew.

romans 4

 If you’re a hard worker and do a good job, you deserve your pay; we don’t call your wages a gift. But if you see that the job is too big for you, that it’s something only God can do, and you trust him to do it—you could never do it for yourself no matter how hard and long you worked—well, that trusting-him-to-do-it is what gets you set right with God, by God. Sheer gift.

wow. 

i love gifts!  i want to look at life this year, good days and bad, as a sheer gift.  on winter mornings (even in florida), you can see your breath. something normally invisible is temporarily frozen and able to be viewed.  

i want to see each breath this year...and i want learn to view it as a gift.  

the truth is, 
i don't deserve another minute.  
i'm not entitled to another year.  

this year i want to imagine all the moments wrapped up in paper and string...just for me.  i want to unwrap the exciting packages and the dull ones and be grateful for both...  i want to look for and find sheer gifts all over my life--hidden in unexpected places and holding surprising contents.  i want to live this next year with open hands, awaiting and expecting anything and everything He sends my way.  i want to look at 2014 like a child on christmas morning...with awe and wonder in my eyes...

I want to drag this concept into every area of my life...even the spiritual.  this year, i want to live in the sheer gift of His grace.  i want to make sure i am not attempting to add to His gift by "trying harder".  i want to make sure i realize that this job is too big for me.  when someone gives an amazing gift, it's very human to want to pay them back in some way...and i often make that mistake in how i relate to the God who spoke the mountains into existence.  how prideful.  how insulting.  i want to approach my Father this year with a heart of humility and gratefulness...ever aware of the gifts He gives and how i can never deserve them.  i want to practice living in this sheer gift ALL. YEAR. LONG.

the word gift has two meanings--it can refer to a present or an ability.  in years past, i've been guilty of never using the gifts God has given to me.  in fact i've hidden them--to keep them safe from harm, i've put them up on a high and dusty shelf...so nothing can be broken.  this year i want to unwrap my gifts and atually use them.

i want to make.  
i want to write.  
i want to draw.  
i want to create.

i want to drag these unused gifts out of my soul's attic.  i don't want to be the daughter that buried her talents.  

i've lived too long in shame for the ways i'm made.  
i've lived too long in fear.  
i've lived way too long without flying from my open cage.  

doing the things i love scares me.  it feels so intimate and exhilarating.  it's...terrifying to put it all out there.  but this year? i want to dust off my brushes and paint on my life's canvas.  i want to use up all the blank paper in my house to write and sketch and create.  i want to put my ideas to work. i'm tired of comparing my gifts or asking Him for an exchange.  i'm tired of valuing His creation in this world but devaluing it in myself. this year i'm going to be kind to myself as i make my way through this unknown terrain.  i'm not going to demand perfection of me.  i'm going to be brave with my gifts and graceful with myself along the way. 

along with learning to use my gifts, in 2014 i want to be a giver.  

no reasons.  
no paybacks.  
no credit taken.  
no strings attached.  

i want to be a giver this year.  i have been given so much i want to take this year to give of my time, my resources and talents. i want to be intentional about looking for these opportunities wherever i go.  i want this year to be marked by a extreme generosity. i want to offer my best giving to God this year.  i want to mirror the Great Giver with a little giving of my own. i want to be on the hunt this year for opportunities to share.

i want to spend 2014 admiring the sheer gift of life,

basking in the sheer gift of grace, 

daring to use the gifts given to me, 

and 

last of all,

mirroring the Giver of every good thing. 



new year.  two words.

sheer gift.
















Tuesday, January 7, 2014

seeds, magic, roots & blooms




lately, it's the littlest things that catch my attention.  

things overlooked.  things forgotten.  

things like seeds. 

if you stop just a second to think about it, seeds are such a wild & wonderful way to begin a thing!  even the simplest description sounds so other worldly--

first you cover this tiny gray ball with some dirt.  make sure it sees the sun. just add water and then stand back--who knows what it will be.



inside every 

little seed 
is 
pure magic. 


  
seeds don't typically look like magic.  it's impossible to know just by looking, that something wonderful is beginning.  even if you know the sort, you never know if the seed you hold in your hand will grow up and become:

houses or boats,
driftwood or pencils,
chrysanthemums or raspberries,
books or tree houses, 
baby beds or wildflowers,
shade or shelter.  

(because, if you look at it just right, all of these things must begin with a seed.) 

every seed is 

a secret.

a promise.

a mystery.

a miracle.

it seems logical to me that of all the seeds, the dandelion and milkweed seeds would grow the most magical things of all...they seem so full of fluff and whimsy...and yet...once they are properly sunned and watered, they are only pretty weeds.

the start of a thing rarely tips you off to what is to come.  i constantly try to guess at what God is planting as it goes into the soft soil of my heart but really--it's quite hard to judge endings from their beginnings.  and there is so much beginning...

so much in my life is changing, churning.  the soil under my feet is being tilled and turned. everywhere i look God is growing something new.  beginnings are being planted everywhere. i am both thrilled and terrified with the slightly chaotic turn my life is taking...


*my husband just started a new job (in the office next to mine). he will work from home & for something he believes in.  it's kind of his dream job...working for the amazing c.o.o. of trail life usa (a non-profit that is focused on God and adventure and honor and training boys to become amazing men...see more here -------> www.traillifeusa.com). in one miraculously strategic move God has answered so many prayers...and turned our routine on it's very head. i'm so excited for eric and for our family as we venture into this untamed territory.  so excited to see just what grows out of this change.




*today i stand bewildered at the beginning of a long journey to wellness.  my battle with lyme disease continues to alter everything.  every day is different.  some days wonderful.  some (like last saturday) are from my nightmares.  God is doing lots of weeding and planting in this area of my life.  He's planting seeds of empathy and compassion in me where self-centeredness has always grown.  He's folding seeds of quiet and contentment into loud and lusty, me.  He's cultivating helplessness and gratitude and those other tricky things inside my heart.  i can feel these foreign things taking root deep down inside. from the outside i'm sure i look much the same but these invisible roots promise visible blooms someday soon. all these sweet seedlings are slowly growing and taking over places where my thorny words used to be.  i've never in my life been so happy to watch, follow & listen.  i would have never guessed this is what would begin to grow from illness.  



*i am beginning some new creative projects in this starting season.  projects unlike i've ever attempted.  God has planted some seeds of truth in my life that are growing quite steadily into action.  it's exciting and risky and ... i can't wait to see what pops up out of this ground.

i am enthralled with life this january!  there are new beginnings in all directions.  it's an expectant season where much is being planted.  i'm intoxicated with the hope that all this seed magic will explode into something wonderful come spring.  i can't wait for these seeds to show me what it means to bloom.