A Word for the New Year

Last year I set a goal to paint through three online art courses. The hope was that in so doing, I would improve as a painter. There were times I wanted to quit. I wasn't sure I was any more proficient than when I started, nevertheless, I persevered. I'm still not sure I've improved all…

You Will Never Walk Alone

One of my goals for 2019 was to post to this blog twice a month. The first post was scheduled to be posted on February 1. Since I knew the busyness of the end of year holiday season would make a post on the 15th challenging, the final post was placed on my calendar to…

Cost Plus in Construction and Life

When my husband and I broke ground for our country cottage, we were excited. Our dream to create a home of comfort, rest, and peace for all who enter or abide within was becoming a reality. The contract our builder presented to us was described as cost plus. A cost plus construction contract is one in which  the…

A Good and Perfect Gift

Today started like any other day, with the exception that I woke to the pitter, patter of rain. I didn’t mind. I actually love a rainy day, especially when I have the freedom to hunker down inside with a good book or a creative project. I did wonder though; how am I going to achieve…

A Web to Rival Charlotte’s

Several weeks ago I headed out for my morning walk a bit earlier than usual. Clouds hanging on after a nighttime rain dulled the light of the sun rising in the eastern sky. I noticed an extra heavy layer of dew blanketing the trees and meadow grasses as I drove into the park. After parking…

Cruella De Vil, Absolutely Not!

MY MOTHER, YES! American women are rediscovering the beauty of hair in shades of gray, so much so that the younger set is stripping the pigment out of their hair for faded tresses. Unfortunately, I was one of the unlucky ones who found her first gray hair as a twenty-something, long before colorless and 2-toned hair…

Hold Expectations Lightly

Several years ago I was going through a period of discontent in a relationship that is important to me. Efforts for positive change felt minimally rewarded. Thankfully, I have women in my life who are caring enough to walk alongside me when life gets sticky. Shared experience between women who are vulnerable enough to be…

Daring to Dream

Saugatuck, MI - the Kalamazoo River a house on the water, the seemingly impossible dream . . .. . . an afternoon sailboat excursion, the very doable dream! Several months ago I made myself available as an unofficial life coach to a younger friend. I say unofficial because I am not a trained life coach.…

A Forward Fold to the Left Spells Success

Have you ever read Sonora Carver’s autobiography, A Girl and Five Brave Horses? If you enjoy memoirs and you have a soft spot for horses, I am certain you would enjoy it. You might even be inspired as I have been. In 1924, at the age of 19, Sonora joined W.F. Carver’s diving horse show. Her…

Working It Out Together

What do you do when you have offended or caused injury to someone? Do you pull away out of fear or embarrassment? Do you deny culpability? Do you rationalize? Do you hide? Do you avoid the issue in hopes that it will just all go away and be forgotten. Do you seek forgiveness and reconciliation? If…

There Will Be Only Love

Last Friday I opened a letter addressed to my husband. Inside was a notice that led us down a path of investigation. At the end of the path came a shocking discovery. Someone we love made a series of very poor choices that have fallen forward on us. One week later, we find ourselves between…

Nothing! Indeed!

“All this way for nothing!” I muttered to myself as I stood before bridge #5 on the Shelby Bottoms Greenway. The six foot barricades were clear — NO crossing. Don’t even try! My destination had been the bridge that crossed over the Cumberland River. It had been five years since I’d last biked to the…

We Don’t Always Have to Be Strong

Earlier this year I enrolled in a Tai Chi class at Vanderbilt's Osher Center of Integrated Medicine. I’d had no experience with Tai Chi. I had, however, seen the physical art portrayed on the silver screen. I thought it was beautiful. Each movement flowed into the next without pause, the bodies synchronized and in constant…

Lesson One: Mower Maintenance 101

My husband and I are building a small house on a bit of acreage north of Nashville, TN. Ten years ago, this land was a jungle of oaks, pines, cedars, and lots of briars and kudzu. My dad came in with an eye for beauty and his tractor, a high end commercial lawn maintenance machine,…

All Work and No Play Makes Jack a Dull Boy

During a recent conversation with someone I care deeply for, I was confronted with my inability to make all things right in the world. I’d initiated the conversation because I was working on a project that required a bit of assistance from my friend. He was not late in getting his response to me. I…

Lily’s Wedding Dress

I recently listened to the audio recording of Cokie and Steve Roberts' book From This Day Forward. It is half memoir and half history lesson. The chapters alternate between their story and various stories of marriage in America -- from Colonial times to present day. There are many interesting stories, both theirs and those of…

A Worst – Best Birthday

Sometime ago I was introduced to the Enneagram. The Enneagram Institute website describes the Enneagram as a personality profiling system "based on a modern synthesis of a number of ancient wisdom traditions." The Narrative Enneagram website describes it as "a powerful tool for personal and collective transformation. Stemming from the Greek words ennea (nine) and grammos (a written symbol),…