I’ve got a lengthy list of excuses. Can I add those to my word count? How about this: I’m in the thick of writing this novel. I’ve added 3000 words this week, and it feels good. I’m in my groove. Next week will be better, with more words and progress.
In the meantime, how great was time on that beach? So great!
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Great friends hold you to your values and dreams. They do not let you give up.
Meg and I have been friends since high school, when others on swim team mistook us for sisters. Close enough. Her parents lovingly refer to me as their other daughter. Her children refer to me as “Auntie Telly” and her husband goes out of his way to share music, and be patient with my fairly frequent appearances.
Meg is many things, but most of all — she is my consumate cheerleader. This week, she helped arrange a quick get-away for a few hours of beach bliss. A long, windy drive past fields of strawberries, groves of lemons, and pastures of horses to find baskets of fish and chips, sea lions, pelicans, pebbles worn smooth by the endless tide, sandy toes, moss, palm trees swaying in a thick foggy breeze, and my sails refilled.
There are few places I feel as at peace as I do on the beach. Or in the homes of such good friends.
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- Journal, Travel
I’ve had occasional bouts with insomnia in the last few years. I’ll go four or five days a month with 2-3 hours of sleep in a row. The first night of more than 6 hours of sleep after such a restless time feels like I’ve won life’s lottery. Colors are brighter. The weather is perfect. Any of the world’s problems is just a matter of a good conversation away from being solved.
This sort of insomnia is only made worse when it isn’t in my own bed. Dealing with hyper-sensitive emotions in the middle of the night is torture. I remember a series of nights I managed this alone in a hotel room in Mozambique, where the TV station was stuck on a Portuguese cooking show. I was soon a zombie, and fairly certain I was never going to cook with salted fish.
I’m on the road this week for work, thoroughly enjoying the warmer ways of Southern California. Palm trees, a Pacific breeze and Mexican food that is just so, so good, and a weekend planned with some of my closest friends. Thankfully, today after more than a full week of this utter misery, I’m back on track and full of sass and vigor. Last night was interrupted only by the sound of the person (or bear) in the next room who snored so loudly, I awoke at 2 am. Note to self: time to upgrade hotels.
Now, give me more coffee, and get out of my way.
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- Daily Sass
Sisters in Spirit is a series of blog posts by a group of women who felt a spiritual perspective was lacking from the steady stream of news and information that flowed through their daily lives. They each agreed to carve out a space on their blogs on a monthly basis for a spiritual conversation. The topic this month is: how do we praise, even during the storm?
Oh, nelly. This topic couldn’t come at a more appropriate time. The waters are choppy and the storm is raging.
My grandmother’s memorial is next week. I’m struggling with the thought of even having to see my grandfather. His pain. His loss. I am an empathetic gal, and I’m talking myself into a place of strength and grace for this service.
I know I’ve written much about her here – and how much I miss her. I won’t belabor the point. I will, however, praise God for bringing this woman in my life and for letting her have such a rich, beautiful time.
There are a couple key difficult people in my life who delight in making my life more difficult. I’ve been wrestling with this for several years. Last week I wrote about apathy – how I’d talked myself into a place of simply not caring anymore. And then my friend Meg sent an email reminding me we are called to care. For everyone. Not just those who are pleasant – but everyone. She said, “We all want love. We want to be love, to feel love. Even the difficult ones.”
And so, I praise God for bringing me friends like Meg who keep me on track. And for putting difficult people in my life because it challenges my capacities for kindness.
And then there is love love. It can be so great, and so painful. I know little for certain on the matter other than to feel it for a moment is better than not at all.
I praise and thank God for giving me the chance to love with hope and intensity, with a heart that somehow remains open.
I don’t know about you — but I need God more when I’m in pain. Sometimes I feel like we go through storms to remind us of our need for Him. I cry out. I pray. I fast. I need to be more cognizant of praising Him when I’m happy, not just when I’m in need. As Beth Moore says, “He brings us out, to pull us back in.”
On the other side of this storm, may there be mercy and grace.
I hope you continue this conversation by reading and commenting other perspectives on Christianity with my other Sisters in Spirit. Become part of the conversation:
Rebekah is a blogger, amateur photographer, and missions volunteer with Adventures in Missions. A lifetime of being a pastor’s kid, attending church regularly, and a private Christian school education gave her a lot of knowledge about the nuances of theology without a lot of faith. Now she’s trying to figure out how faith and theology applies to her relationships and daily life. You can find her online at www.honeysucklelife.com. (on leave at the moment)
Sarah is municipal attorney, mom to a toddler boy, and United Methodist’s pastor’s wife. (She does not play the organ.) She is a life-long Missouri girl with a heart for hospitality and social justice. Sarah enjoys cooking, running, knitting and embroidery, reading, and playing in the sprinkler. Sarah blogs at www.beautyschooldropout.net
Bianca is a newlywed Navy wife from the great state of Texas (where she coincidentally currently resides), and she and her husband are expecting their first child in late summer. She has a passion for serving others, asking hard questions and sharing The Gospel with both her words and actions. Bianca loves Jesus, her hubs, authentic friendships, traveling, making lists of all kinds, and trying new recipes which she blogs about on BecomingBianca.com.
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I like making things for the second time much more than the first. And the third more than the second. There is such a learning curve with most creative projects.
Also, I get a little obsessed. Once I want to do scrappy quilting, or bake the world’s best gingersnaps, that’s pretty much all I want to do.
I’ve eaten so many of these, I very well may have pre-diabetes this week. But hey! The sugar highs fueled another table runner. Similar fabric choices:
Loving the new quilting foot I received for my machine. It makes such a difference with the consistency of stitches and flattening all the layers during quilting. Of course, now I have three quilting books on my desk and I’m eyeing table runners that might as well involve climbing Everest. A logical leap in skill and ability, there, Donley.
Next up: two beard hats. I’m starting over because the original pattern I used created hats and beards for a man the size of Paul Bunyan. And the men I’m knitting these babies for? Well, I wouldn’t call them delicate, but I’m pretty sure I could piggy back them up a mountain. Like, say, Everest.
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- handmade, Happy Hippie, Heirloom Homestead
Because sometimes we just need a laugh on a Monday morning.
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Project: Table runner with cloth napkin set
Next up: Denyse Schmidt patterns. I want to be less Little House on the Prairie with these projects and more avant-gard.
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- Happy Hippie, Heirloom Homestead, June Cleaver
I’m working through my current stash of fabric in an attempt to use what I have.
I’ll be moving again sometime in the next few months — as it goes with renting — and I do not need to pack and haul all of these craft supplies. Yarn, fabric and books — they seem to multiply at my house. Some are even paired with patterns or sticky notes for the project I thought would be perfect.
How quaint, five years later.
This is the first pattern I’ve sewn out of Fresh Fabric Treats, and I like it. I skipped the gathering on some pieces and am glad. It is my first table runner and I wanted to keep the lines simple.
Perhaps I’ll graduate to one of the quilts featured; they are gorgeous.
Come to find out, step 1 of any new quilting endeavor should be: buy a new rotary blade. Makes a world of difference when your tools are sharp. New needle in the machine. Iron steaming. Piles of fabric and ideas ready.
Now, to stay focused.
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- Domestic Art, Handmade goods, Heirloom Homestead
Count me among the masses: I love Downtown Abbey. It doesn’t help I still have family in England and dream of this period of time. (As if we’d be upstairs. I’m pretty sure I was Daisy in a previous life. But, hey! Let a girl dream.)
So, I got a little carried this week preparing dinner for a handful of friends and dancing around my kitchen like I’m Mrs. Patmore, the cook.
Add photos of magic risotto here. Forgot to take those. Also, the side dishes. Oopsie.
I think they’d all agree: Edith — get yourself together. No more chasing after old dudes. Mary? Kinda weird you married your cousin. Also, stop bullying him. And Sybil — proud of you for marrying for love and not stature. Even if Branson, er your husband, is a bit mouthy.
And Matthew Crowley, if Mary gets to be too much of a pain, see yourself to Golden Abbey. No tuxes or tails required. I’ll even let you keep your inheritance. My daddy doesn’t need it.
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