Natures gift today… I LOVE opening things especially gifts. Today my lovely peonies decided to open on their own! It really feels like a monday after the holiday weekend. We had a wicked cool storm last night, now a cool sunny morning – just they perfect way to start the week.
For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:15
Last week my girls bustled about with dad, planning all kinds of sweet surprises for mother’s day. All week long there were whispers and clues in the form of markers, cameras left in strange place, extra ingredients in the fridge… I really love solving mysteries, but I resisted the urge, I can wait for the sweetness. I don’t think they planned the perfect weather or all my iris blooming – lovely bonus! Yet, I did realize as I was banned to my bed on saturday morning (until 8:45AM) that I am ok with mother’s day brunch as long as someone brings me a cup of coffee during the wait. I really am awful at sleeping in.
This morning was too beautiful not to sneak out on a quick walk. Spring has been around for a while but you know, the trees are still waking up. I had to get a photo of this tree that looks like it has two different blossoms blooming from the same branches – I’ve never noticed this before. And my beautiful solomon’s seal which looks like the leaves unfold as it sprouts up. Hope you have a little son shine in your life today and get out for a little walk.
A child has not made up his mind yet about what is and what is not possible. He has no fixed preconceptions about what reality is; and if someone tells him that the mossy place under the lilac bush is a magic place, he may wait until he thinks that no one is watching him, but then he will very probably crawl in under the lilac bush to see for himself. A child also knows how to accept a gift. He does not worry about losing his dignity or becoming indebted if he accepts it. His conscience does not bother him because the gift is free and he has not earned it and therefore really has no right to it. He just takes it, with joy. In fact, if it is something that he wants very much he may even ask for it. And lastly, a child knows how to trust. It is late at night and very dark and there is the sound of sirens as his father wakes him. He does not explain anything but just takes him by the hand and gets him up, and the child is scared out of his wits and has no idea what is going on, but he takes his father’s hand anyway and lets his father lead him where he chooses into the darkness.
Federick Buechner, The Magnificent Defeat
The other day I looked out the window across the street and saw a gaggle of boys climbing in a tree, hanging from its limbs. My daughters begged to join them, and after approval they flew across the street like so many times before. As I glanced across the street again I reached for my camera, it seems safer sometimes to grieve good friends moving from the other side on the lens. A van pulls up and more kids pile out. Their little laughs and giggles seem so natural, in fact this is all they know in life, they have played together since they were born. I quietly trail behind them snapping photos as they move from one favorite playing spot to another. They play hard together like they know the last time they get to be all together is coming, but I doubt they fully grasp yet the reality of that.
As a mother my heart breaks for these kiddos, I have learned to love them as my own, watch them grow, prayed for them and celebrated them. My heart is mindful of the teachable moments as I press through my own tears, for many of them this is their first “loss.” I can’t predict how they are going to respond or hurt as their little world changes, but I can come alongside to embrace and encourage in this moment. My youngest we tried to prepare by telling her they were moving around Easter, has remained quiet other than saying repeatedly “mommy, I don’t want Easter to come.” But my little love, it is here, now is the time to say our good byes, and hope that even this sad event may demonstrate to our kids about the meaning and cost of love, how to leave well, and the tie that binds. It’s Easter – it all happens according to His plan and glory. Thank you lord, for friends to journey with, our lives have been enriched and we have been blessed.
It was a little maddening how many DIY projects there were for the wedding. But one thing is for sure – it all turned out beautiful! Everything went so fast I wasn’t able to take nearly as many photos as I hoped. That’s why you hire photographers, right! Above is a close-up of my sisters bouquet, there was such a variety of flowers!
In addition to the all the flowers her florist assembled, I put together these boxes to accent the woodland and succulent theme in the room. I am so thankful for the talented folks in my community who helped me with these, seriously Dwayne built these boxes in a few short hours and a friend who owns a nursery got me these succulents at the end of the season. Total cost $0. My total gratitude – priceless.
So happy with how these turned out. He added chicken wire to the tall ones so that they could stand up. I simply planted between the holes and added moss on top to retain the soil. I think he made them all from tongue and grove boards which gave the boxes a little ledge/foot to stand on. I love that it leaves us something living to keep from the special day.
I love picking up seeds and pods at this time of year. They are so interesting and range in size. The top photo came from little lettuce plants – about 1 inch in length. The ones below come from a catalpa tree they are about 1 foot in length. These trees are found all over the world but a new fact I just learned in writing this, the largest living catalpa tree is on the grounds of the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan; it was planted in the year of its dedication, 1879.
This weekend I am off to celebrate my sister’s wedding, hopefully outdoors if the weather cooperates. I have been working on a few projects for it, to be shared next week – I don’t want to ruin the surprise! My work has also been featured on Lisa’s food & pottery blog – have a great weekend!
Amazingly I found myself in the garden this week, without kids and with a camera in my hand. Blissfully quiet I sat quite still and caught a bit of nature in action. These are some of my favorite photos from the savored moments.
As I post these pictures, I am realizing how much we get around the state of Michigan! Midland is beautiful little gem hidden in the middle of the state, the girls and I got away for a little culture field trip and ended up at Dow gardens. They have a great interactive children’s garden where the kids can help water and play through out the carefully planned space. The best part is it is full of all different types of vegetables that are out of their norm, so they can see what the plants look like and even taste. I was impressed with the basil hedge, varieties of beans, corn, squash, peppers, tomatillos, cabbage… it was so education even for me. I wish my vegetable garden looked this beautiful!
Our “girls only” trip was quite fun but I am left a tad bit exhausted – 2 eight-hour days driving, each way! The little ones on the other hand completely wear their emotions on their sleeves, and bounce back much quicker. I am slightly overwhelmed lately with the training of this beauties, anyone have some good books to usher my babies into this next stage of life. I am hoping we find a rhythm to this summer or at least an extra dose of grace. :)
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.
It seems that I can’t take enough photos. The organizing and sorting has completely consumed my time. I’m working on a few surprises for loved ones…