Thursday, December 19, 2013

He's No Scrooge

He stands on the stage, and adjusts his top hat. With one hand clutching the curved top of the plastic cane, he pulls at his collar and swallows hard. The overhead lights are bright and he squints, staring out at the crowd as he waits for his turn to sing. We've worked on his lines, trying to remember to slow down and speak clearly, enunciating each word, whether it's his monologue about the criminality of the Christmas season or his solo following the visit of the ghostly Jacob Marley.  As much as he might try, he's too kind-hearted and soft-spoken to be a true Scrooge, but he grimaces all the same, whether from nerves or in an attempt to fit the part. On cue he opens his mouth and he sings out his signature line, "Bah-humbug!" No one is more surprised than me at the sweet, strong voice that fills the gym.

While the imagery of a frozen London with its snow-laden roofs and ice-crusted windowpanes is the traditional reflection of Scrooge's icy countenance, my heart warms as I watch my boy. His ruby-colored dressing gown is four sizes too big and even though I rolled up and pinned the sleeves, his hands are lost in the folds of fabric. He stands to one side, watching the party-goers at Mr. Fezziwig's party as they dance and twirl, busy fiddling with his cane and shuffling his feet, possibly a bit distracted by the bustling activity off-stage. At the next scene, he stumbles back upon seeing his own tomb stone and breaks into song (with a break in his voice at the high notes), promising to change, promising to honor Christmas in his heart. Authentic relief floods his features as he reaches the final song, the same relief Scrooge must feel when he discovers that it's Christmas morning and he has the opportunity "to live to be another man from what he was". My boy grins at the applause and when he's introduced, there's a touch of awkwardness as he bows his tall frame. After changing back into his jeans and t-shirt, Aaron stands a little taller, a little more proudly, listening to the praise of his friends and family. He's back to being just Aaron. But a tad bit changed after this experience, more responsible, more aware of the work involved in a role of this size and amazed at the satisfaction he feels for a job well done.

A Christmas Carol is familiar to us all and while this tale of redemption has been played out before our eyes in a variety of ways, the story stays the same. Whether Bob Crachit is played by Kermit the Frog or whether it's Bill Murray goofing his way along as Scrooge, Charles Dickens' words continue to shine through, ringing true down through the ages, as powerful today as the first time they were spoken 170 years ago on December 17, 1843, at its debut public production. They are words to be remembered, no matter who speaks them, be it Jim Henson or my Aaron-Boy.

As we enter the final week of this advent season, it's fitting to offer a final prayer, just as Tiny Tim squeaks at the end of the show. "God bless us, everyone." And that includes you.

For those of you interested in seeing the full performance, here's the link: A Dickens of a Christmas.


Inspired by this picture...and my boy.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Victory Dance!

Yahoo! And I'm even done early so that I can run away for Thanksgiving and not be counting words or fretting about any of my characters getting left behind!

Here's a little snippet from chapter two...a fun launching pad for a rather exciting series of adventures!

It was the day after their trip to Spain and the students were debriefing with Mr. Wiseman during their Gifted and Talented class. They had been anxious to finally reach the last period of the day so they could finally break the silence and talk about their mission. The class waited patiently as Mr. Wiseman read back through the report, watching him as he periodically popped a lemon drop in his mouth from his stash on his desk.

Espi sat in her usual seat in the front row, chewing on her thumbnail and swinging one foot nervously from side to side. X sat just behind her, staring at his empty desktop with his hands tucked in his lap. Every few seconds, he glanced up at his teacher, blinking rapidly, before he returned his gaze to his desk. Peter’s long legs stuck out into the aisle as he sat with his elbows propped up on the desk positioned immediately behind X. He chewed on his lower lip and counted the ceiling tiles again. The twins sat a few rows over and whispered in their secret language. Charlie sat with his left foot resting on the seat of the desk in front of him, an ice pack covering his bandaged ankle.

Mr. Wiseman cleared his throat and all the students sat up at attention, eyes focused on the top of their teacher’s head. A few moments of expectation passed, but Mr. Wiseman continued reading, making a few notes with his red pencil. “A false alarm,” Peter said in a quiet voice resulting in a few chuckles from his fellow students. The laughter finally broke the silence that filled the room, the spell that seemed to hang over everyone. Leaning forward in his seat, Peter tapped X on the shoulder. When his friend turned around, he whispered, “Maybe it’s my terrible writing that has him so enthralled. He doesn’t usually take this long to review our reports.”

“That’s what I was thinking. I hope there’s wrothing nong. Uh, nothing wrong,” X stuttered. “I’ve been nervous all day. Ever since we got back yesterday and Charlie was injured, I’ve had this terrible feeling that we just had our trast lip. Last trip.”

Peter nodded and patted X on the shoulder before responding. “Mr. Wiseman would never just pull the plug on our missions. He would be sure that we all had a chance to talk it through. This is the first trouble we’ve had since the trip to the circus, and I’m sure he’ll take that into consideration.”

“I hope so. I’ve been chewing my nails all day long. Mira...look at my hands,” Espi thrust her hands onto X’s desk. “Mi mamá took me to get a manicure this past weekend and now look. They are a mess. My mom is going to explode. Ugh.” She shook her head sadly and went back to chewing on her pinkie nail.

Peter leaned back in his chair and turned to face Charlie. “How’s the ankle? Is it still swollen?”

With a wince, Charlie leaned forward and shifted the ice pack. “Yeah, it’s pretty puffy.”

“The doctor wants the swelling to go down...” Charlotte added.

“ they can do the x-ray.”

“Then they’ll know whether he needs...”

“...a cast or a splint.” Charlie finished with a frown.

“Sorry, man,” Peter said. “Let me know if you need help carrying your backpack or anything.”

“Thanks. So far, Charlotte has been...”

“...your pack mule,” she said with a smile, “Hee-haw!”

At the sound of Charlotte’s donkey sound-effects, Mr. Wiseman looked up from the report and smiled. “Thanks for being patient, team. I know you are anxious to talk through yesterday’s mission, but I needed to get my thoughts in order. You can imagine my surprise upon your arrival yesterday afternoon, so it’s been very helpful for me to have Peter’s report to grasp a better idea of what transpired while you were gone. Peter, great job with the write up, by the way. You managed to paint a very complete picture for me of what happened on that street and I believe that it will be helpful as we make decisions related to future missions.”

“What do you mean ‘decisions’? Espi blurted. “We were as careful as we could be. Please let us go back. Por favor, Señor Wiseman.” Her fellow students nodded, leaning forward in their seats in support.

Mr. Wiseman lifted a hand in the air. “Calm down, calm down. I have no intention of terminating our Time Bender missions.” A collective sigh filled the room. “What I mean is that we need to learn from this experience before moving on. By making appropriate changes, you will be a better team and better able to face any new challenges you might face. Do you understand?” The students nodded silently.

“Okay. Good. Now, I did have an opportunity to talk with Charlie and Charlotte’s mom and dad yesterday. I called them just before the bell rang, after you five reappeared in a pile on the floor in front of my desk.” This memory garnered a laugh from everyone.

Peter chuckled, “The look on your face, Mr. Wiseman, was priceless.”

“Yeah, your eyes were bugged out of your head,” giggled Espi.

“Well now, put yourself in my place. You had only been gone a moment and then suddenly there you are: Espi gripping Charlotte’s pigtail, Charlotte clutching the cuff of X’s pants, X clinging to Peter’s belt loop and Peter grasping Charlie’s hand who is sprawled on the floor grabbing his ankle. What a mess!”

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Lost and Found

Case No. 241
Date: 11/17/12

Location: Pamplona, Spain
Time: August, 1974

GT Team: Peter, X, Espi, Charlotte & Charlie

The first thing we heard upon landing on the cobblestoned street was, “¡Cuidado! ¡Los torros vienen!” Turning to Espi, we listened, terrified, as she translated for us.  

“Run! Bulls are coming!”  

Scrambling to our feet, we ran for a nearby fence and clambered over the top into a sea of spectators. As we huddled safely on the other side of the wooden barrier, I (Peter) slipped the Time Bender into my sweatshirt pocket and zipped it shut. From a previous experience, we had learned the importance of making certain that our ticket home was secure, and while I don’t particularly like to have this responsibility, somebody has to keep the Time Bender safe.

Once we had caught our breath, we paused a moment to take in our surroundings.
Charlotte climbed onto Charlie’s shoulders to get a better look over the crowd. “What can you see?” stuttered, X, still recovering from our sudden arrival. “Where are we?” Before Charlotte could answer, Espi piped up.

“It’s the running of the bulls! Mama mía, we must be in España and if what my Tío Alfredo says is true, we’re in for some excitement.” Charlotte jumped down her twin brother’s shoulders and we squeezed into a circle around Espi to hear what she had to say.  She had to shout to be heard over the boisterous crowd that pressed against us on every side. “Back in the 1970’s, uh, 1974, I think, my uncle took a trip to Pamplona, España to run with the bulls. He was sweet on my Tía Noemi and he thought that by doing something so macho, he would win her heart. I guess it worked, because they got married the next year. My tío loves to tell the story over and over about how he ran down the street in front of the stampede of torros shouting, ‘¡Noemi! ¡Noemi! ¡Noemi!’ It makes my tía blush every time he says it. In fact, one time...”

“Uh, Espi,” X interrupted. “As much as I love to hear your stories about your family,” he shrugged and indicated the crowd, “we kind of need to figure out why we’re here.”

Espi looked at each of us and laughed, “Lo siento. Sorry, guys, you know me, always yakking! Okay, according to Tío Alfredo the bulls are released on one side of town at eight o’clock in the morning.  This is signaled with a rocket being fired.  Then the runners, wearing red scarves and white shirts,” indicating a few men waiting on the cobblestoned street, “race in front of the bulls all the way to the bullring.  They will fire more rockets once all the bulls have been corralled, right through there.”  Looking to our left, we could see the bull’s destination:  the bullring.

“How many of these lunatics will be running in front of the bulls?” I asked.

“I think hundreds, but you would know better, Number Boy,” she teased.

“Right.”  I scanned the crowd, allowing my ticker tape brain to count what I saw.

3,631 spectators.

412 children sitting on shoulders and peering over the wall.

1 boy and 1 girl sitting on the wall.

Just then, the crowd broke out in song. We turned to Espi, waiting for an explanation. She grinned, “Before the beginning of the encierro, the bull run, they sing a benediction.  A prayer to St. Fermín for safety.”

“If they wanted to be safe...” Charlotte mumbled.

“...they’d stay on this side of the fence,”  Charlie finished.

“What about you, Peter?  Do you see anything interesting,” X asked me.

“Not really. Just lots of people waving flags and scarves. Do you remember reading anything about this?  Maybe in a newspaper or magazine?”

X closed his eyes and I knew that he was scanning anything he’d ever read in search of an article or story about Pamplona and the running of the bulls.  We waited, watching X’s eyes twitch, his eye balls moving behind his eyelids as if reading.  If he had ever read something, he would find it somewhere in his photographic brain.

The singing around us rose to a deafening crescendo and then we all jumped as the air was filled with crash of the first rocket.  At the same moment, X’s eyes popped open.  “I got it!”

“Bien, because here come the bulls!” Espi exclaimed. “Quick! What happened?”

“There was an accident years ago when a young child ran out into the corridor, just as the bulls crashed past.” 

“Was it a boy or a girl?” I asked.

X closed his eyes again and then shouted, “A boy! Octavio Gorriz. He was six years old.”

I looked back toward the young boy sitting on the wall. He waved a red scarf and cheered along with the crowd. He was about the same size as my cousin, Nick and Nick had just turned seven.  I made an executive decision, “Come on. I think I see our target.” Unfortunately, we were crushed together and it was almost impossible to move through the throng.

As we shuffled along, stepping on toes and trying to squeeze through the spectators, I turned to Espi. “How long is the run? How much time do we have, do you think?”

“Tío Alfredo said it was fast. Four minutes maybe? The run is only about 900 yards long.”

The numbers clicked and flashed in my mind:  900 yards in 4 minutes...that’s about 15 miles per hour.  The average bull weighed 2,403 pounds, versus the average man weighing in at 185 pounds...that means the beast is almost 13 times heavier.  The odds of little Octavio surviving a collision with a bull...a million to one.

We were still several yards away and I wasn’t sure we would make it. We could already feel the rumble of the hooves of the bulls as they approached. If we were going to reach the boy in time, we would have to get creative.  Turning to the twins, I gave them a nod and they smiled before springing into action; Charlie tossed Charlotte up into the air.  She landed lightly on the shoulders of a burly man standing nearby, but before he could protest, she had bounced back into the air, springing from spectator to spectator.  While his sister traveled over the mass of people, Charlie wriggled, rolled and spun between the men and women in the crowd.  Within moments, they had arrived at the wall, just inches from the boy.

But they were too late.

As the runners came within view, yelling and waving newspapers to attract the six bulls who thundered behind them, Espi, X and I watched in horror as the young Octavio waved and yelled, “¡Papi!” before jumping off the wall.  From where we pushed against the crowd, we could hear his mother screaming, but we were still to far away to do anything.

Suddenly there was a flash of green as Charlotte launched herself off the fence, did a backflip and landed on the cobblestones below, her hands stretched out to the boy. Charlie was right behind her.  They each seized one of Octavio’s arms and swung him up in the air, back to the safety of his mother.  Then Charlie, with no time to lose, grabbed Charlotte and tossed her up and over the fence.  As Charlie stepped toward the barrier, he slipped on the wet cobblestone and twisted his ankle, causing him to fall to one knee. As he tried to stand up, it was obvious that he couldn’t put any weight on his injured leg, which made running impossible.  He began limping toward safety, dragging his bad foot behind him and I could hear Charlotte yelling for him to hurry.  The thundering throng was just a few feet away when I finally reached the barrier.  I threw myself over the wood, reaching out to Charlie while X grabbed my leg.  Charlie managed grab my hand just as the Time Bender began to vibrate and I could only hope that Espi and Charlotte where hanging onto X.  As the runners and bulls rumble past, the street began to spin, and we were headed back to school.  The last thing we heard over the roar of the crowd was a man yelling, “¡Noemi! ¡Noemi! ¡Noemi!”

Recorded by Peter.

Mr Wiseman looked up from the report and shook his head.  Looking around at the five students sitting in Room A-1, he sighed before saying, “I think I speak for us all when I say that was cutting it a little close.”


So, I succumbed.  

While I spent most of the week trying to talk myself out of participating in NaNoWriMo this year, my story continued to thunder around in my head like a herd of bulls.  I guess I'm in for another month of living vicariously through my students from Great Heights Middle School.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sleepy Day

The sun decided not to get up this morning. Which meant, of course, that I didn't truly didn't get up either.  I might be walking round, tackling the projects of the day--laundry, groceries and popping dinner in the crock pot--but I still feel like I have yet to wake up.

Even Lydia, with her limited knowledge of meteorology and seasons, commented as we left the grocery store that it was already nighttime. "No Sweetie, it's morning, but the dark clouds make it seem later than it is." Or, like the day just never really started.

Sunday afternoon the sun glinted off the golden leaves as they danced in the breeze. The shade was a bit chilly, but sitting in the sun was toasty; I was almost tempted to cast off my sweater. Norah even rode her scooter to school and back wearing shorts and a t-shirt, shaking off my suggestion to grab a wrap. The last vestiges of summer were enough to keep us warm.

But not today. Today I sit wrapped in a scarf and I'm waiting for the kettle to whistle, needing a warm mug to thaw out my fingers. If my to-do list was done, I'd snuggle on the couch under my down blanket and read a bit, my feet buried in slippers.  Maybe even doze off.  It's that kind of day. The kind where the only glow comes from the lamp in the living room, turned on at 2 o'clock in the afternoon and doing its best to cast off the gloom of a pending winter.

Fall is giving up and snow is predicted for Wednesday.


That's right, Winter, I boo you.  I'm not ready for bundling and layering, for boots and scarves and hats, for scraping windshields and shoveling sidewalks.  I'm not ready to plow through snow on our way to school or feel the biting cold on my nose and cheeks.

Boo to you, Winter.  At least give us some sunshine.  yawn...


Maybe I was a little hard on Winter.  In fact, my husband would gently remind me that I booed Summer just a few months ago. "I can't handle this heat. I don't want anyone to touch me; we just stick together, such sweaty kids. I can't wait to wear clothes again."  It would appear that I have an issue with contentment.  So, boo to that, too! 

333 words inspired by the word boo:  (verb) to show dislike or disapproval of someone or something by shouting “Boo” slowly

Monday, October 28, 2013


"Do you know what's in there?"

"No. It gives me the heeby jeebies."

"It can't be that bad."

"Well then, you open it."

"No. I mean, you know, that there's nothing to be afraid of."

"Right. I'm not afraid. It just creeps me out."

"Maybe if we open it just a crack..."

"After you, my friend."

"Uh, rock, paper scissors?"

"Fine. One, two three, go."

"Drat.  Best of three?"

"Nope. You're it."

"Okay. Get behind me, but be ready to run. I'm not sticking around if it's bad."

"Ugh. What's that horrible smell?"

"Something is rotting. I'm going to gag."

"What is it, can you tell?"

"I think it's that sausage soup from two weeks ago. I thought you threw it out."

"Gross. Slide the trash can over here. I'm pitching the Tupperware, too."

"Agreed. Now...what's in that container behind the milk? Is that lo mein? Ack! What a nightmare!"


151 words about a little something creepy. It may not be a dismembered hand, but it still makes me shudder.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Gathering Place

The warm autumn sun casts my shadow over the kitchen table strewn with my notebook and papers.  Across the room, Lydia snuggles on the couch under a blanket, repeating after Diego in her bold voice, "¡Al rescate!"  With my littlest engaged in a mission to rescue Willie the whistling prairie dog, I am free to soak up the sun and a few moments to write, read and renew my spirit.  This is my cat-hour.

My notebook paper is blindingly white against the golden glow of the pine table, the same table from my childhood.  I can remember vividly the afternoon my mom and dad lugged it through the front door and into the kitchen.

"It's already dented."

"It's called distressed.  They put those marks there on purpose to make it appear older, more antique-like."

"So it's already wrecked?"

Now, twenty years later, we've distressed the table even more:
black smudges from a centerpiece that got wet and left paint bleeding into the wood;
green streaks from so-called "washable" markers gone wild;
tan gouges from a little person caught testing out her butter-knife cutting skills on the surface;
and even a few pale scratches from a youngster who had gnawed on a corner during a painful season of teething.

Each time I wipe up sticky syrup spots and scrape off glitter-glue glumps, I discover a new stain or scratch.

"Someday, when the kids are grown, we'll sand the whole thing down and refinish it.  We'll have a brand new table."

Or maybe not.

This mommy-heart might resist removing all evidence of my kids, heads bent over birthday cards covered with stickers and math homework with pesky numbers that won't add up.  I may feel differently a few years from now and choose to keep the memories of hodge-podge craftiness and overly-generous watercoloring.

Perhaps twenty years from now, I'll be sitting at this same excessively distressed pine table with another generation of crafty kids.  Another bunch of kids with tongues poking out of the corners of their mouths while they labor over Thanksgiving turkeys covered in glitter glue and another mess of markers smeared across the pine surface.

"Sorry, Nana.  I made an oopsie."

"Don't worry, Sweetie.  See this big black mark?  Your mommy made that oopsie years ago."


A memoir of 385 words inspired by the word pine and by our kitchen table, our gathering place.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

99 Words

"Mom!  I don't have anything to wear!"

"I did laundry yesterday; look in your dresser.  And please don't yell."

"I can't go out of the house in any of this!  What brand is this?  Circo?"

"It's from Target and it looks nice on you.  That color brings out the blue in your eyes."

"Ugh.  Why is it so stretchy?  It's at least two sizes too big."

"It's supposed to be loose for comfort.  There's nothing worse than clothing that squeezes you."

"It's like a muumuu bred with a pair of footy-pajamas."

"They call it a Babygro.  It's cute."


A 99 Word-Story inspired by a single word from the 99th page of the Oxford English Dictionary:  Babygro -- a kind of all-in-one stretch garment for babies.

I figured this could go a couple of different ways.  Either this is a conversation that my infant daughter would have had with me almost ten years ago if she could have protested how I dressed her.  Or it's a conversation we'll have in about five years when she decides to experiment with her wardrobe and I freak out about how much she doesn't look like a little girl anymore.

Monday, October 14, 2013

With Astonishing Poise

The waiting is almost over.

For months we've sat with our hands clenched in our laps, holding our collective breath.  Way back in May, this day seemed ages away...and that was a good thing.  The challenges seemed overwhelming and the barriers unsurmountable.  There were hot, stinging tears and not a few moments of desperation.  (For both Norah and me.)

The desire and dedication were clearly present, but there is no way to simply determine your way through to conquering a new skill, especially that pesky kip.  Fighting gravity and your physical limits is a nefarious combination that can threaten to bring you to your knees, waving a white flag.

"I can't do it."  Resignation threatens with a groan.  "I quit."

But she hasn't quit.  Day after day, she stares at that chalk-covered bar and faces her foe.  Up on the bleachers I sit, helplessly willing her with every ounce of my own body to get it this time.  Sometimes she is still left dangling under the bar, pointed toes brushing the mat.  But more and more often, she finds herself up and over the bar, an infectious smile on her face and a growing confidence.  (I confess to having uncharacteristically whooped a few times, much to her embarrassment and delight.)

This weekend she has her first meet and the anticipation hangs heavy in our house, a painful mixture of hope and release.  She will still be my favorite gymnast whether she makes it through her routine or not,  but my stomach knots with anxiety, preparing myself for a potentially disappointed little girl who misses her own mark.

Knowing my Norah, she will walk out to the bars on Sunday, back straight and head held high with confidence.  She will salute the judges and leap from the springboard to the bar and defy her doubts, maybe making it through the flips and maybe not.  Regardless of the outcome, I am excited to see my girl finish just as she typically does, with astonishing poise.

And I'll learn a life lesson from one of my kids.  Again.

That's my girl on the middle beam, arms spread wide.


Inspired by the words "anticipation" and "leap".  And the sweet girl in the picture above.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Mysterious Specimen

"How is your research progressing with this particular subject, Doctor?"

"This is a curious creature:  intelligent, cooperative, easily distracted."

"Have you been successful in establishing communication yet?"

"Primarily through grunts and body language, Sir."

"So, it acts like an animal?"

"But, it's definitely human."

"Interesting...and the age?"

"Eleven, I believe."

"And gender?"



A 55-Word story inspired by the current scientific experiments going on in our home in our endless efforts to raise our pre-teen.  I love that boy!  (but not his wandering socks or misplaced homework or his 87% success rate at following through...)

Linking up with Trifecta - inspired by the word:  animal 

3  :  a human being considered chiefly as physical or nonrational; also :  this nature

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Aromas of Fall

Betty dried her hands on the checkered apron tied around her waist and checked the timer on the stove. She could just smell the allspice wafting out of the oven, signaling her nose that the apple pie was almost done.  Stopping to stir the cider as it bubbled on the stove, a heavenly aroma of cinnamon filled the kitchen.  She smiled, watching the clove-studded orange slices float on the surface.  Betty turned down the heat under the kettle and turned to the honey-spiced bread, carefully cutting generous slices of the still-warm loaf and wrapping it in the rust-colored towel before depositing the fragrant bundle in the basket on the kitchen table.  The timer dinged and Betty slipped on her oven mitts, careful not to bump the pie plate as she set it on the trivet.  Standing back, she surveyed the fall bounty.

And then she frowned.

"You did it again," she mumbled.  "You prepared the feast, but forgot to invite the friends.  Better hope the neighbors are hungry."


Inspired by the picture above and my own tendency to bake, bake, bake in the fall and winter.  And then eat, eat, eat more than I should.  Gratefully, my kids are getting old enough to help their mom out with some of the culinary creations coming from our kitchen, so I can cook with abandon and not feel any guilt!  And I get to enjoy the added bonus of a house filled with these delicious aromas of fall!

The recipe for the honey-spiced bread is on my blog:  Honey Spice Bread.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Under a Cloud

We sat, listening to the drumming of the raindrops on the roof.  After a week of rain, the ground was spongy, the sun was elusive and we were ready for a glimpse of the sky.  But still it poured.  And not the pitter patter of a springtime shower, but the thumping and thundering of a storm pent up, unleashing it's weighty burden on us. An unrelenting veil of water washed down over everything.

We laid in bed, praying for a break in the storm.  Not the deluge that gurgles through the gutters and sputters into the yard below, but a respite from this storm of our hearts.  This season of waiting out our own personal tempest has taken its toll:  sleep is elusive, tears burst forth unexpectedly and we're ready for a glimpse of a rainbow -- a reminder of God's promise that He hasn't forgotten us.

Under these clouds of doubt and worry, we weather the steady drips and drops of life.

Another bill in the mail...drip, drip.
Another trip to the grocery...drip, drop.
Another critical comment about our house on the market...drop, drip.

In spite of feeling like our prayers have gotten lost in the storm above, blown away and scattered in the wind, we are reminded again that God is good.  He will see us through this storm and His faithfulness is surer than any illusory rainbow; His reward for patience and endurance is more precious than a pot of gold.

Yesterday the rains persisted and we kept our umbrellas near at hand.  Today, however, the sun is shining and the clear sky nearly blinds our eyes.  In the same way, our storm will pass and on that day the piercing brightness of seeing God's goodness revealed will make every drip and drop worth it.  In fact, His radiance shining through our fragile gratitude will be a beauty to behold.

image courtesy of Unsplash, Creative Commons

The waters saw you, God—

    the waters saw you and reeled!
        Even the deep depths shook!
17 The clouds poured water,
    the skies cracked thunder;
        your arrows were flying all around!
18 The crash of your thunder was in the swirling storm;
    lightning lit up the whole world;
        the earth shook and quaked.
19 Your way went straight through the sea;
    your pathways went right through the mighty waters.
        But your footprints left no trace!
20 You led your people like sheep
    under the care of Moses and Aaron.

Psalm 77:16-20


Linking up with Write at the Merge this week - 315 words inspired by the picture above, the storms in Northern Colorado and our own stormy hopes.

Linking up with Trifecta - inspired by the word:  Rainbow 

3: [from the impossibility of reaching the rainbow, at whose foot a pot of gold is said to be buried] :  an illusory goal or hope 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Tune in this evening at 8 o'clock for the series premier of, "I'm Home!", a laugh-out-loud comedy zeroing in on the ups and downs and ins and outs of the life of Nicki, a stay-at-home mom with a score to settle with Mrs. Cleaver!

You won't want to miss the hilarious confrontation between Nicki and the UPS man when he innocently comments on "how nice it must be to just sit at home all day".  Or, the slapstick silliness of Nicki attempting to vacuum the living room in the midst of Legos, action figures and a tea party in progress, while at the same time carrying the newest member of the family on her hip.  Your sides will ache as you watch Nicki labor over six different dinners in an effort to please her picky family only to find herself ten minutes later packing lunch-boxes in the never-ending efforts to keep her kids fed.

Hijinks ensue with episodes like, "Why's Your Toothbrush Under My Bed?", "Hotdogs Make Me Gag" and "She Keeps Breathing My Air".

Don't miss this season's Must Watch Show -- and remember to call and thank your mother!


Curiously, this show only made it through the first three episodes, but you can watch the reruns on channel 8 every morning at 3 am.  If you watch them on constant repeat, you can get a pretty good idea of what Nicki's life is really like.


Linking up with Write at the Merge this week:  Write the plot of a TV show.