See You at the Finish Line

  May, 2015.  It’s hot in Florida, but this is where the race begins.  It’s also where it ends.  One hundred miles in the Florida sun.  The Keys 100. Running is a sport our youngest son has embraced.  Along with the rest of his family, he recognizes that runners are a breed of their own.  Running has its own culture,  yet it’s a culture that includes much helpfulness and service. On this trip, one of … Read more

I Want to be Remembered


Mother’s Day. I remember the time it dawned on me that I was essentially writing my Mom Memoirs each day as I mothered the half dozen children God had given to us. I decided that thinking about how I wanted to be remembered would help me in the daily grind of being a mom. (Not that I always succeeded, mind you!) I wrote this fifteen years ago when our children were ages four to fourteen. … Read more

Teacher Appreciation Week

I was on my way to the mall when I noticed the bumper sticker on the car in front of me.  “If you can read this, thank a teacher,” it said.     It had been twenty years since I enrolled in school as a first grader, and I had never taken the time to thank her with a note. I went home that day and wrote a note to my first-grade teacher.


National Teacher Appreciation Week is May 4-8, 2015,.  There are so many ways to say thanks.  Our children have many “teachers” in their lives.  Whether your kids are in public school, Christian day school, or are being homeschooled, there is always a teacher to thank.  Additionally, if your children attend Sunday school or participate in kids’ clubs on Wednesday evenings, there are teachers to thank.   When your child is involved in sports, there’s a teacher-coach to thank.

We do well to model that appreciation in front of our children.  We do well to help them develop an attitude of gratitude for those folks who invest in their lives and the lives of others.  When Dave and I were raising our brood, we attempted to model appreciation and helped them with notes to their teachers.  Sometimes, I confess, I had to hide my frustration with a certain teacher and find good, truthful things that could be said.  Amazingly, when we took the time to say thanks, we saw things to appreciate we had not considered before.

When our half-dozen were in school, we invited their teacher(s) to our home for a family-style meal near the end of the school year.  Our house wasn’t fancy.  In fact, in those days, we had plaster peeling from the dining room walls. Yet we had a great time showing our appreciation for the hard work done those 180 days a year.

You might not be into serving a meal in your home, but there are plenty of other ways to say thanks.

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Homemade, Hearthside Memories

Hearth:   In archaeology, a hearth is a firepit or other fireplace feature of any period. Initial usage refers to a place of warmth, heat, or fire, or ‘heat of earth’.

BFTH fresh out of the oven 1

There’s nothing like homemade bread baked  in an outdoor oven.  On rainy days, there’s nothing like the warmth from that hearthside!

I’m going back home again. It’s the changing-of-the-leaves time.  It’s apple cider and apple butter time. It’s Springs Folk Festival time, and I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

It’s true that I’ve already seen the hundreds of displays, craftsand craftsmen at this Festival.  I’ve watched glass blowing, log hewing, sheep shearing, horses on a treadmill, and women quilting.  I’ve listened to fiddle-playing in the woods, seen applebuttermaking over an open fire, and sat in the building where a play is performed or various groups and families sing and play a diverse assortment of instruments, music and songs.

I’ve purchased my share of relics and crafts to use in my home or as gifts. Yet while I’ll enjoy walking the trail and maybe hitching a ride on the hay wagon, I’m really heading home for one reason: to help bake home-mixed, homemade bread in an outdoor oven.   

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Rearranging my Life after Goodbyes

It’s been quite the summer. We’ve prayed over secrets and said more goodbyes than hellos. A few weeks ago I told a friend that I’ve sat on so many of my kids’ secrets this summer that I had trouble remembering what information was classified from whom. Sometimes I wasn’t sure which one needed prayers the most. Recently I told Rebekah that maybe we just have too many kids. (There’s an event at VT that she wants … Read more