• Faith,  grace,  Life

    Lessons Learned from a Pumpkin

    For the past 16 years, our annual family trips to the pumpkin patch have always culminated with a pumpkin-picking-out ceremony. Our chosen pumpkin has always been selected based on its various redeeming attributes. A strong stem for easy carrying. A perfectly round shape with no dents or flat sides. A bright orange color with no trace of green or brown spots. For the past 16 years, our little family would sit down about a week before Halloween and carve the pumpkin. The kids sketch designs, my husband wields the knife, and we all scoop out the seeds for roasting. Family Pumpkin Carving is one of my favorite traditions. As we’re…

  • Faith,  Growth,  Life,  parenting

    The Surprising Weight of Small Decisions

    Smoke from the wildfires made its way back to our area yesterday. I was determined to get a quick walk in, even though the neighborhood smelled like a campfire. (Which I typically enjoy, but it loses its appeal without the promise of burnt hot dogs and s’mores). The haze hanging in the atmosphere didn’t deter me from getting outside and enjoying the fresh air changing leaves. Also, it was well past lunchtime and I had taken approximately 27 steps that day, so a walk was necessary. I decided to take our 8 year old Sheltie, Lucy, with me. She spends her days sprawled out, napping near my office desk. Getting…

  • grace,  Growth,  Life,  Peace

    Needing Some Peace? He’s Got You Covered.

    Here in Northern Colorado, wildfires are burning uncontrollably. Dry air, no rain, and just plain bad luck have left us with hazy day after hazy day. Sometimes we can even see bits of ash floating down when we venture outside. It all feels so metaphorical for 2020, doesn’t it? And still, we continue to encounter bumps along this already potholed road. Several weeks ago, we were enjoying some cooler summer days. Then the announcement of a hybrid model for school gave us a little bounce in our step. After months of isolation, we were thrilled with the hope of progress and our kids getting out of the house. After all,…

  • grace,  Growth,  Life

    Teaching Pandemic Style: What Teachers Want You to Know

    Maybe you’ve noticed, but there are big emotions floating around out there. Decisions being made by school districts across the nation are triggering some feelings. After what seems like the longest Summer Vacation known to man, we are finally staring face to face with a brand new school year. However….teachers are overwhelmed. Just like the rest of us. For some parents, this feels like a sliver of light after walking through a dark tunnel for the past four months. We are ready to be released from the chains of this pandemic life, and more than happy to share our children with their precious teachers. We have endured 19 weeks at…

  • growing pains,  Growth,  Life

    Coffee, Kenny Loggins, and Unexpected Changes

    Change is not something that I welcome, or even handle very well. Yet here we are, surrounded by changing times and changing experiences. This random combo is just another example of the unexpected changes in life these days, particularly Wednesday nights. I had just dropped my teenagers off at church. Their youth group leaders planned the highly anticipated “Water Games” for the evening . A thunderstorm was threatening in the distance, and raindrops began tapping the windshield as soon as I pulled away from the parking lot. Well played, God. Youth group is meeting again, and this has been the absolute highlight of the summer so far. Our mid-sized church…