Category Archives: Weekends

Posts on Saturdays and Sundays

Serene Saturdays #35

Madison is at college, and the younger kids are a spiritual retreat this weekend; therefore, the house is quiet.  Ken and I are lounging around this morning, him Skyping a friend from England, and me relaxing with my computer and reconnecting with the world.  Every time I think I could get used to this kind of quiet, I remind myself that I can enjoy this thoroughly, knowing that my kids will return home soon.  If they were permanently out of the house…it would be a different story.

Anyway, I find myself reflecting on our new life in Dallas.  I am dreaming about how to craft the rhythm that we want, how to stay connected in a city that tends towards isolation, and how to replenish myself by pursuing my hobbies and passions.  Those are big issues to me, but ones that could slip into oblivion if I don’t strategically and intentionally create them into existence.

So this morning, I am thankful for:

*  Bright red pillows on a cream couch.

*  The chill in the air.

*  The space to create and dream.

*  Fall decorations.

*  New beginnings.

I pray that you can insert more of yourself and your dreams into your day today!


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Serene Saturdays #34

We are complete again!  Our eldest came home from college on Thursday. Woo hoo!

For us, the holidays will really begin today, as we get to watch my youngest dance in the  Nutcracker.  For over 14 years, we have been attending the Nutcracker to watch one or both of our daughters dance.  This will be the first time we’ve watched the performance with our eldest sitting in the audience with us.

So that I can really focus on my family for the remainder of the holidays, I am not planning on posting this week.  Therefore, I will take this opportunity to say MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!  I hope your holiday is amazing, playful, and replenishing!

This week I am grateful for:

*  Reading aloud with my kids.

*  A furnace that kicks on.

*  Spanish and Art tutors for my kids.

*  A book study with great, wise, and fun ladies.

*  Getting to watch my youngest in the Nutcracker, sitting next to my eldest, my husband, and our dear, dear friend.  Priceless.

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Serene Saturdays #33

Today has been a might busy day.  Lots of errands, Nutcracker/ballet rehearsal drives, and snacks to be purchased.  Tonight I am hosting a Christmas party for the youth of our church.  It won’t be huge…our church is new and only has a handful of youth.  But nonetheless, I have invested a good deal of time getting things ready for tonight.  I am not normally the party hosting go-to person, but I wanted the kids to have a get together of their own, and thought that I had the emotional energy to do this one!

Because my time is short today, this post will be short.  But I still did want to check in to take a moment to reflect and be grateful.  This week I am thankful for:

*  Christmas ornaments that have so many memories attached to them.

*  Christmas music that also stir memories and nostalgia.

*  Silly Christmas videos.

*  Snow globes.


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Serene Saturdays #32

This week, my family and I went to our city’s Christmas tree lighting celebration.  The city makes an event out of it by having a line-up of local entertainment, having a carnival alongside the tree, providing carriage rides, and having characters walking around to provide picture opportunities.

(Because every holiday celebration should include Ronald MacDonald!?!?!?)

This week I am thankful for…

* Christmas decorations

* Family traditions

* New friends

* Inspiration

I hope that your week is full of memory-making opportunities, and lots and lots of lights!

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Serene Saturdays #31

My Thanksgiving in pictures…

A post-meal game of football in our local park…

This week of family, celebrating, thankfulness, food, football and playfulness has been so refreshing!  I hope it has been the same for you.

As we get ready to drive our eldest back to college and begin the new work week, I take with me a treasure chest full of amazing memories and a heart full of encouragement.

This week I am thankful for:

* The ability to create a great Thanksgiving dinner.

* Family traditions.

* Lots of laughter.

* A family that really enjoys each other.

* The smell of a pine tree in our home.


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Serene Saturdays #30

Last night my husband pulled in from a very long day on the road (thanks to traffic in New York City), traveling to pick up my college daughter bringing her home for Thanksgiving.  I can’t tell you what a feeling of completion it is to have her in our home again.  The cheer that runs through my mind is that we are 6 again!

Today most of my family is going to attend the Yale-Harvard game – a big deal where we are.  Football on a cool Fall day is a great way to start off the Thanksgiving holiday.

Thanksgiving in our home this year will be really quiet.  Over the past years, we have hosted 20+ people with several tables spread throughout our home.  That has come with piles and piles of food, great conversation and lots of energy.  That energy has become as much a part of the holiday as the decorations and place settings.  But with a huge chunk of our friends moving away, we find ourselves starting over.  This year, we will celebrate with two great friends.

We asked a lot of people to join us (we probably made 40 invites to various friends), but everyone is understandably committed to their friends and family. So maybe we’ll just open our front door and see who stumbles in!

As we look at a new landscape of seasonal celebrating, we find that we’re thankful for so much.

* My daughter is back home from college!!!!!!

* Our home is warm and lovely.

* All of us are healthy.

* We have a full refrigerator and the capacity to make amazing food.

* We have great friends spread throughout the country with whom we will be celebrating – even if long distance.

I pray that your Thanksgiving is energetic and peaceful at the same time, filled with family and friends, and a creator of amazing life-long memories.  As you prepare for the festivities, keep you focus on gratitude and love.  You are blessed!

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Serene Saturdays #29

(Picture taken at the Yale Golf course.)

What a lovely week it was!   For the majority of the days, the weather was above average and perfect.  The kids and I skipped part of school on Tuesday to play a quick game of tennis.  It was a great time to be a resident of the northeast.

Having started with saying that we skipped school, though, we actually got a lot done in school this week.  That is a good feeling – to be able to look back on the week and know that you accomplished a lot.

This coming Friday we’ll drive to Pennsylvania to pick up our eldest from college.  I can’t wait, and figure that I might just have trouble concentrating on anything but getting to have her join us again.  It is good that this last week was productive, because this week just might not be…

This week I am thankful for:

* A string of beautiful days to drink in

* The way the leaves, as they collect on the streets and sidewalks, bounce around.  That makes me happy.

* A spontaneous lunch with my husband.

* Candles that smell amazing.

* A warm scarf around my neck.

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Serene Saturdays #28

A freak fall snowstorm has thrown my little state into disarray.  The problem was that, because our ground is already saturated and tree roots are weak, and because there were still a full set of leaves on the trees, when the snow fell, an unbelievable amount of trees fell, and tree limbs were broken off.  That caused electrical lines to be severed, and therefore massive power outages – at its peak, over 850,000 households without power.  Even after a week, there are still over 200,000 homes without power.

When Topical Storm Irene hit in late August, my family was without power for 6 days.  While being off the grid for almost a week is devastating to life (refrig and freezer food ruined, the cost of having to eat out all meals because you can’t food prep in your home, no information coming into the home, freezing showers, laundry taken to a laundry mat, etc.), it isn’t the same as having your electricity off when the temps drop well below freezing.  This state has been consumed with the attempt to restore power, and supporting those without it.

Thankfully, our home didn’t even flicker.  The shoreline got much less snow than the rest of the state did (5″ versus 20″), but we’ve followed the news of those seeking refuge in shelters and schools that have been opened up to the public for shelter.

My Saturday posts are typically about the week’s wrap-up, and dedicated to gratitude for things that have passed or are coming.  This week has brought to mind so many items for which I am grateful that I can’t even count.  I am grateful for the big things (our heat remaining on, our health being great, having enough food, undisturbed water supply, our stove working so that we can prepare cheaper/healthier meals at home) and for the small things (a car’s heater that works, warm coats, lights on after dark, TV/computers working, being able to Skype with my college daughter, etc).

So, this week I am ALSO grateful for:

* A fun Halloween, and the celebration of our neighbors.

* Having our dearest friend, Eric, stay with us for a few days.

* Temperatures that warm up enough for us to believe that it really is still fall (and not winter yet).

* Good books.

* Such looming financial needs that only God can reach down and provide for.

I hope that you have a warm and electrically charged week!

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Serene Saturdays #27

This morning’s Saturday post is a little later than usual because my husband and son hosted a neighborhood event that dominated our Saturday morning routine (which includes me getting away to write).

Almost a year ago, my younger son was moved to initiate a grassroots effort to transform neighborhoods by rallying people around one challenge a week. The challenges can be anything from writing a letter to thank the firemen in your area, to spending one afternoon during the week to pick up trash on your block.  The challenges are varied, and have been issued from him since December of last year.  He has members in three countries other than the US, and several states represented within the US.

The neighborhood event that we hosted this morning was to promote his website,, and to provide our neighbors another chance to gather together to build community.

A week or so ago, our son placed flyers on all of the doors on our street for 3 blocks inviting the residents to gather in front of our home where we would serve them breakfast.  We borrowed a huge griddle for pancakes, whipped up some scrambled eggs, had coffee, orange juice and donuts, and greeted our neighbors as they arrived.

Our son sharing his vision for Act 1 happened very relationally without a huge announcement, just shared person to person.  It was neat to steward his dream by gathering people together to hear his story.

If we look cold, we were!  When the date was set weeks ago, who knew that today would be the earliest snowstorm I’ve seen since living in the northeast.  Just minutes after we packed up, cleaned up, and said goodbye to everyone, it started to snow.

This week I am thankful for:

* My amazing neighbors

* My family working together to champion each others’ dreams

* Discovering new web pages that are inspiring

* The distraction of snow

* The house smelling like Apple Bread

I pray that you find a comforting, warm place to replenish this week!


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Serene Saturdays #26

As anticipated, this has been a fantastic and full week!  It began with the visit from a long-time friend from Dallas who now resides in Seattle.  Such a great time of reconnecting.

And then on Wednesday, a dear family that moved away recently came for a visit and brought our college daughter with them for a long weekend.  I have been in a continuous state of smiling, whether from silly moments and fun adventures, or just from the full feeling of knowing that we’re all together again.

As a family, we went off on our own to create a dream day for our daughter.  She wanted a day composed of all things fall.  That included apple picking, pumpkin picking, going through a corn maze, and carving pumpkins.

I’ve already decided that at the end of this week, when everyone heads back to their places, I’m going to need my own sticker that says, “I survived watching everyone leave.”

This week I am thankful for:

* Friendships that feel like family

* Fall activities

* Carved pumpkins

* A family that really enjoys each other


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