Thursday, April 24, 2014


I found myself on a carousel earlier in the week. We are on spring break, and Erin needed shoes, so we went to the mall. She got a pair of shoes (the lace up kind because she ties shoes now). And afterward we went to the carousel.

When Lanie and Erin were little, I think we were at the mall almost weekly. We window shopped. We lunched. We would get treats at Godiva. And there was usually a carousel ride involved. Now our mall trips are nearly yearly. Those memories with my kids seem so long ago.

Both kids anticipated the ride, and we had it almost to ourselves when most of the rest of the state was back in school.

Lanie asked me, "Are you getting on too?"

I had a moment's wonder if she wanted me to or not.

"Yes, but not on a horse," I said.

"Ok," she replied. "I wasn't going to go on if you didn't." This is the hard place where you're not five anymore; fun knows no limit, but image does.

The kids were seated and the music started and the ride seemed to spurt and lurch more than I remembered.

I looked at Erin and smiled.

"Don't watch me," she said, bashful.

I turned back to Lanie and feigned terror as a bobbing horse was right behind me with open mouth. She looked horrified herself. This mom of hers, perhaps a bit too much. And I sensed her embarrassment. This is a hard place for a mom, when they're not five anymore ...

I looked out at the people in the mall and I held back tears over independence, struggle, metamorphosis and stretching wings. I found myself mourning a time that went by too fast--without warning so I could give it a proper goodbye. Now, just a memory, and me wondering when did this happen?

This ride, it goes too fast.

Monday, April 21, 2014

One thousand gifts and still counting (5475-5485)

camera 2 on Easter services
chocolate bunnies
two-tone doorknobs underneath the nearly new
homemade eggrolls, gifted by a neighbor across the street
and their wishes to us for a happy Easter
amazing worship

sunny skies
brilliant sunsets
a nap on the couch
the sound of my kids playing outside

Nearly new

Our house was built in the early 70s. There are so many things I love about it--it reminds me of my childhood; it has its own character; the trees are grown and mature. I fell in love with the slate floors. I fell in love with the hobnail light fixtures. I even liked the two-tone doorknobs.

As we began to change things around here, I planned to replace the doorknobs, something along the lines of oil-rubbed bronze. I decided to get a can of spray paint and paint the existing main level doorknobs myself. (This is totally inspired by one of my favorite DIY blogs: young house love.)

Part of our Easter weekend was spent in a little makeover and lots of painting. Pizza boxes are awesome props for holding screws and doorknobs for 360 degree spraying.

Here's a shot of what the doorknobs looked like before:

And after:

I like the change. I liked that we used what was original to the house. I like that it was such a simple project with a good result. The laundry room is almost complete as I toggle between inside work and outside work. Cabinets painted, hardware painted, just a minor setback with a drill that died. Hopefully we'll get everything back in place this coming weekend. I absolutely love how bright white the doors are.

Monday, April 14, 2014

One thousand gifts and still counting (5450-5477)

warm days
campfire smells
spring cleaning
gifted flowers and herbs
dinner with Linda
pizza delivery

painting projects
Mary's hug
Pamela's call

Your protection
flip flops
Erin bike riding everywhere
and neighbors noticing her

this community
a fire pit
iced tea, sweetened
an open house

our school room
Fridays with Julie
Bible study
a visit from my dad
Julie's encouragement

his 78 years
this life, wholehearted