we remember

Memorial Day can be tricky in our household.

While the day has a solomness surrounding it, it is also usually a pretty day perfect to relax and enjoy some down time.  Yes there will be a wonderful meal at the end of the day, however…

First things first.

Mr. Right has an obligation to remember and pay his respects.

Yes, every single year.

Even while we lived in Europe, each year, we visited several American cemeteries where our soldiers rest in peace.

He made a promise never to forget.  He makes good on his promises.

So early in the morning, he readies his uniform.  Yes, with a small dressmaker’s ruler, every single ribbon, button, and award is measured and remeasure.  I don’t think I have to tell you that everything is shined to perfection.  Nor are there any wrinkles or lint to be found.

While he prepares, I make sure I am dressed and ready to go when he is.  This is important to him, so it is important to me.  This year I chose to wear 2 beautiful strands of pearls the 20160529_124608grands gave me.  Stunning colors along with the smooth, cool feel.  I always wear a dress and sandals.  The grass is still wet and sandals seems to work best.

We visited a National Cemetery about 30 minutes from our home.  The drive is quiet.

We have a list of sites we visit, we made promises.  He has soldiers to remember.

As he puts on his hat, I look around and am always taken aback by the beauty of the grounds.

The very next time you complain about taxes, this is a beautiful thing to slip into your mind.  Our tax dollars are used to keep the sacred ground in excellent condition.  It is a sense of pride and appreciation.  Very well done.

As I lag behind and try my best to give him time and space, my eyes wonder.  The cemetery is amazingly full of visitors yet shockingly quiet.  I see so many flags, one on each grave.  Each standing at attention.  I see flowers, beautiful flowers symbolizing the love of family and friends.  I spy a bottle of unopened beer leaning against a headstone.  A unit patch placed on top, a buddy came to visit.  I see small stones placed on headstones and coins.  Lots of coins, military men will leave a coin to remember their own.

I try not to interrupt others time.  I play with my string of pearls.  I pray.  I pray for military wives and moms.  I pray for their shattered hearts. It is the very least I can do.

This year a woman caught my eye, held up her camera and asked if she could take a picture of Mr. Right.  He had his back to us.  I nodded yes.  I appreciated the gesture, her kindness in asking.   Her respect of him and his private time. 20160529_120442

After an hour or so, you almost forget you are holding your breath.  Until that moment when something reminds you to breathe.

As I followed him through one last section, I saw a family of four.  A lady about 85+, and 3 others in the 70 year range.  They were grouped around a headstone.  Flowers in place.  I saw the older woman reach in her pocket.  She handed each person a Hershey Bar.  She kept the last for herself.  They each were unwrapping their chocolate.  Then they began talking louder and smiling.  Remembering.  A private, sincere moment, I just happened to be lucky enough to witness it.   Chocolate helps them remember.

A fresh military haircut, a spit spot uniform, flowers, a unit patch, a prayer or a chocolate bar…

We remember.





pretend happy

Waiting rooms.  The very name explains the purpose.  Waiting.

I spent sometime in one this week.

If you have never been in one, let me explain:

waiting room.jpgUpon first glance, the furniture looks nice with enough padding.  After 2 hours, that is not the case.  I move, shift, cross and uncross my legs.  I try standing and walking (not far).  Everyone in that room has their spidey sense honed in on the door.  The door where a nurse comes through smiling calling your name.

The tension in the room is thick.  Sticky thick like 90% humidity on a late summer day in North Carolina.

When you first get there, you think everything is so opulent, well-appointed.  The longer you stay, the less you like the stupid lamp with the print.  The wooden safari giraffe looked so perfect when you first arrived, now 2 hours later, just sad and ridiculous.

I counted 17 sofas or love seats.  8 coffee tables.  A fireplace large enough for me and the two adults next to me to crawl in.

I pray and then get distracted, circle back to more praying.

I chew my fingers.  No, it is not lady like.  No, it is not appropriate.  I do it anyway.

I fidget.

I play with my hair.

I have a bag with books, magazines, my phone, snacks.  The coffee table in front of me has fanned out surprisingly up to date magazines.  Nothing keeps my interest.

While being surrounded by 7 other people, it feels lonely.Hydrangea-02.jpg

I wring my hands like a 72-year-old Jewish mother.  I am an excellent worrier.

Then I make a list in my mind of things I am good at.

I am polite and say good morning to everyone who walks near.

I am helpful.

Two people asked me the time and I gave it.

I am pretend happy.  I have a smile on my face.

I want to go home.  But of course, I stay and I don’t leave the area.

I am a much better “doer” than a “waiting room contestant”.  I can bring soup, I can tidy and fluff pillows.  I can keep things orderly and on track.  I can quickly change a bed or scrub a bathroom spotless in less time than it takes for someone to  eat their lunch.

Today, I have a friend on the other side of the country playing the waiting game.  Gosh, I have sent way too many texts and emails.  I want her to know there is someone in her corner.

As i type, I have two band-aides on my fingers.  drats.

….ps.  I did a great job at waiting.  Everything turned out wonderful.  I have convinced myself it is because I was a wonderful contestant.  I get to do it all over again in 10 days.

Bring it on.  I got this.

Here’s to all those wonderful souls that are sitting in waiting rooms reading this.

May you be bathed in Grace.  You are in the exact right spot at the right time.  To the person you are lifting up and supporting, you are making a difference.

in this together






good wins

Update on son number 2.

Good wins.  Courage wins.  Decency wins. Getting back out there, wins.  Mr. Right and I appreciate all the concern about our son.  It feels like a huge camp circle with really good people sitting around wearing bandanas holding coffee between their hands. Please know all of our collective prayers, good karma and good wishes did the trick.

Here is the original post sharing events of 2 weeks ago. https://sundayschildfullofgrace.wordpress.com/2016/05/04/why-moms-have-gray-hair/

Last night, he sent us pictures & a brief note:

 finished my adventure I tried to do 2 weeks ago.  no issues this time.  

So there you have it, no fan fare, no huge announcement, no heads up, just him going back to do what he started.  Gabe tent

The hike was 14.52 miles, 26,090 steps, equivalent to climbing 206 floors.

Does a mom’s heart good to know your kid can stand up for himself, go back out there and finish what he started.  wow.

(side note, this mom is still going to worry and fret and sit in a camp circle and pray…. oh and of course continue to have a love affair with hair dye.)

Feels good to know someone with the strength & grace can get back on the horse.

Good wins, quietly.  Good wins.imagejpeg_0

fresh dinner

20160512_100353Garlic Scapes are the flower bud of the garlic plant.  If you pick them when they are very young and tender they are a lovely side dish.  Just saute them quickly with a touch of coconut oil with some real salt and fresh pepper.   The huge, tall woody scapes are best used in a flower arrangement.20160512_115845-1

Here in the Pacific Northwest, Mother Nature is offering up  a sunny, glorious day.  Perfect day for grilling and eating on the patio.

Last night while Mr. Right was juicing, I asked for about a 1/2 cup of fresh pineapple juice.  Oh, be still my heart, the aroma is so sweet/tangy it makes my mouth water.

He juiced the pineapple spear right into a pint jar.  I added a fresh minced clove of garlic, fresh grated ginger, tamari, a teaspoon of olive oil and  beautiful, deep, rich Raw Honey from Beefuddled Farms.    https://www.facebook.com/beefuddledFarms/?fref=ps_result

I put the lid on the marinade and left it to chill in the refrigerator & meld (golly, I love that word) over night.   Marinades are easy to make and be creative with .  Please give it a try.  Homemade is jam-packed full of flavor and you get to skip all the ugly chemicals.  You need some acid and some sweet.  The other herb/spice flavor combinations, well the sky is the limit.20160512_100607-1

This morning I chopped peppers, mushrooms and a pungent red onion.  I tossed in fresh picked thyme and added real salt and fresh ground pepper.  That will sit all day long.

Will grill tonight and add some almond Brown Rice as a side. Grilled Pineapple for dessert anyone?

Don’t ya just love when dinner is all figured out early in the day?

By the way, I love to send a picture of dinner or dessert to Mr. Right. Via email, text or Facebook.  He will be sure and notice.  Maybe it will gently encourage him to hurry home & drive safely?  My goal in showing him, is to let him know that some wonderful food is waiting for him.  He is loved and adored and I want him to be reminded of that.



What’s for dinner in your neck of the woods?

Gentle suggestion: Send a picture of something special you are preparing or baking to your better half. Just think how excited they will be to anticipate a wonderful meal and your good company?

Grace is not a little prayer you say before receiving a meal, it’s a way to live.

Here’s to our good health and wellness!


dirty dishes work miracles

“Alice would have snickered derisively at the notion, but she was the first person I ever met who understood the power of cooking.  She was a great cook, but she cooked more for herself than for other people, not because she was hungry but because she was comforted by the rituals of the kitchen.”  Ruth Reichl

I am currently reading Tender at the Bone by Ruth Reichl. tender to the bone

Certainly the opposite of the many murder mysteries I am drawn to.  This  is a marvelous, relaxing, lovely book.  Every single page is a charming explanation of her formative years and the whys and whatnot’s of the kitchen classroom.

Ruth is a lively and brave author.  Her smart play with words keeps you turning the page. She is witty and entertaining.  Humor helped her (and all of us) through rough experiences.  She so cleverly reminds us “food could be a way of making sense of the world”.

Last week, I was so upset about our son’s injury, I HAD to bake.  I ended up baking 6 loaves of bread, muffins, dog cookies, salmon cakes, Twix Bars, guacamole and tortilla soup.


The rituals of the kitchen helped ease me through my anger, frustration and worry.

20160504_153336-1By some type of cosmic magic, our son is healing.  Maybe it was all my good karma, effort and stack of dirty dishes that did the trick?

Dirty dishes may just be the answer to several of life problems.  I know I figure out oodles of things while in my kitchen.

Love to hear what you are reading (and baking).

You are reading right?  Please tell me people are still reading!

In this together, we will chat again soon.




1,000 bits of glittering gratitude

colorful elephantJoke:  How do you eat an elephant?

Answer:  One bite at a time, of course!


Who would have guessed that I would be writing my 1,000th blog post? Day by day, one bite at a time.

Writing is the easy part. Trying to write “one glittering paragraph” a bit more tricky.


 “To get the right word in the right place is a rare achievement. To condense the diffused light of a page of thought into the luminous flash of a single sentence, is worthy to rank as a prize composition just by itself…Anybody can have ideas–the difficulty is to express them without squandering a quire of paper on an idea that ought to be reduced to one glittering paragraph.” Mark Twain

I began writing this blog in an effort to sleep through the night.   I use to wake up at 3 am and have a need to write down my thoughts, my grocery list, things I was grateful for or things that pushed my buttons.  I decided to write during the day, so I could get a peaceful night’s rest.

However, I never dreamed in a million and one years that I would be given so many bits of goodness (as well as 8 solid hours of nightly sleep).  Imagine one million pieces of glitter all over your keyboard right this very moment?

No one tells you, when you write a blog you will be bathed in Grace, Goodness & Glitter. No one says that you will be gently reminded, daily, how many wonderful loving people are in your circle.

It is never mentioned, if you write a blog your new followers could very well become real life friends.friends

As you write, you share a little smidgen of your heart and soul.  That brief glimpse gently sprinkles glitter on your new friends.  And we all know, you can’t sprinkle glitter on others without getting some on yourself.

We all read blogs and sometimes forget to leave a comment.  Maybe because like me, you forget your google account password and are too lazy to go look it up.  Or you get interrupted, or what they wrote hit too close to home and you can’t figure out the right words to say.

I must gush and tell you, receiving a comment pushes my swing.  You know, high enough that the legs come up on the swing set, and your stomach drops for just a slight second?

Receiving a comment, reminds me every so gently to leave a comment next time I read another blog. Oh, and warms my very soul.

Some days, I receive private emails telling me they read my blog and liked it. Or it touched a nerve and they had to tell me a story.    Inside Christmas cards I find a note on the back:  ps.  I love your blog, never miss reading it.  

Once in a while I am flabbergasted that someone, not in my usual circle of campers, reads my blog and comments. A jaunty tip of the hat to you, my friend.

I am humbled by former school chums, relatives far away, former co-workers who make a quick comment and lift me up.  On a daily basis, I  am gently reminded of the oodles of good eggs in my basket.

The gratitude circle around me is astonishing.  If you ever feel alone in this great big beautiful world, may I suggest start writing a blog.

The writing helps sooth your soul. Writing gently reminds you of all that you have. gratitude

Writing a blog gives me a place to work out life.  People raise their hands and offer a suggestion or idea.

That moment when you have downsized and think oh no, what have we done?  This is too small. I need to tell someone.  (Come to find out, it is perfect & lovely and you just needed to “talk” about it.)

The exact second you see a sign that says, Make a Wish and you know you want to share it with your circle of campers.

The moment in time, when you make the biggest decision in your life…….you know it is the right thing to do, for you, it is just so damn big & scary.  Slowly, word by word, blog by blog you reveal the choices you made.

If you ever, ever feel lonely, start a blog and tell people you are: 

a home school family

read magazines back to front

a vegetarian

study one hour a day

you politely & sternly said no thank you to chemotherapy and radiation and chose a different healing path

Readers come to your rescue.  They pat your hand and tell you it will be okay.  They bap you up side the head with a pillow and yell, COME TO YOUR SENSES!  Sometimes readers know magically what you need and leave a heartfelt comment that for some silly reason makes your eyes water.

Writing a blog was suppose to ease my soul, calm my spirit, empty my brain so I could sleep.

Funny thing happened on the way to a good nights’ sleep.

Writing has swung open the window and let fresh air in, lightened the mood & makes it easier to breathe.

There are a bazillion things to write about and I have only covered 1,000. Apparently, I have oodles to say.

Writing gives me a place to shout at the top of my lungs all that I am grateful for.

As I write day by day, as if by magic my circle of friends grows at that same pace.

If you are on the fence about writing a blog, let me give you a gently shove.  You will love that you jumped in.

I am extremely grateful for the folks that have pushed my swing, held my hand, listened to me, disagreed with me and loved me…… and I am mighty appreciative for a good night’s sleep.

Heartfelt thanks to my followers, my friends.  I started this blog for me, however, somewhere along the path, it slipped from helping myself to gently becoming an honor and privilege in sharing this journey with you.

You guys, thanks kindly,  for holding my hand and agreeing to wear wearing cute shoes and not eat canned peas.

You make my world more sparkly, you lift me up and I am truly grateful.

Today, I will use a teal glitter pen and write in swirly font on a square slip of white paper (I will most likely doodle all over it)


1,000th blog post

1,000 things to be grateful forgreen hydrangeas

In this together, friends.

We will chat tomorrow.








54 wishes



Of course you can’t tell anyone what you wish for, for fear it won’t come true.

During the middle of a wonderful weekend adventure, we stopped for lunch.  We chose a table near the window.  Looking at the people coming and going, counting happy dogs  added a sweet touch to our day.

Tacked to a pole, I spied this sign.

Make a Wish.

Who put that sign there?  Why?  Wacky and Wonderful for sure.  I thanked the universe for such an amazing soul.

While I won’t tell you what I wished for, I will tell you I was a bit greedy.  I made 54 wishes!!! Yes the sign read, made A wish.  Since it was my birthday, my interpretation was make 54 wishes.



The day spent on Vashon Island, swirled & twisted and gracefully unfolded into the most loveliest of days.   I made and let fly 54 wonderful wishes!!!

A day spent with Mr. Right, in the great outdoors refilling our spirits and making wishes.

Grateful, very grateful for another birthday.  Now, the trick is to fill a whole new year with Grace and Goodness. A gift given to me. I get to add the glitter and paint and make the year ahead sparkle.

Ferry ride + beach + lighthouse + balance + wild flowers + cappuccino + rocks + holding hands + sand + bookstore + lunch + making oodles of wishes = Happy Birthday adventure.