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Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

Magic came early this spring! 

My kiddo, who was supposedly doomed to a vegetative state until his predicted death by age 4, went to the Tim Tebow prom last month with a classy “typical” classmate in a hott pink dress, who donned him with a crown and made him king for the evening.

He turns 17 this April.

Security on the main floor was tight as a drum. We peacock-proud parents, along with well-wishers and assorted spectators, were relinquished to the balcony Atop the main floor of a local Episcopal reception hall balcony. 

Parents reconnected. Teens connected. Souls and dreams flourished…


Dear God, thank you that there is a place in Heaven and here on earth for everyone. 

Help us remember that regardless of health or illness, strength or infirmity, life or death, earth or Heaven, sane or insane, righteous or sinners, we belong to You. 

During this Lenten season, Lord, let us wrap our brains around Your concepts of letting go of convention and embracing what is different, foreign and changed.

Transform us, God, into what You would have us be for You, not for men or earth or the lives we know here on earth.

Shine Your mercy on us, Father, that we might slow Down and cherish every moment, with the faith of Your promises beyond.

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wish for us all to be as happy and blissful as this ceramic-figured window dressing in New Orleans during Mardi Gras:


Thanks, God, for seasons of bliss, mirth and joy.

Please, Lord, help us figure out how to carry this feeling into every dark corner, crevasse and cave…that we may endure and prevail over any hardship we may encounter. 

In this Lenten season, God, please help us to find the happiness and victory that come as a result of the reason for this season. In our imperfections, may we inch towards lauging in the face of fear. 

Let us humble ourselves at the lightness of life which arises out of cruel death itself. Let us emerge from the ashen grave with victory!

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Swarming starlings like to congregate just inland from my beach, frequenting the harvested cotton and peanut fields. They are easily spooked by passing cars and en mass, rise like a black curtain – a Hitchcock-like shadow of birds:

The birds darken our skies every November. But today, happy spring shadows bring blossoms of new life and colorful promise, yielding fresh hope and energy!


Thank You, dear God, for bright, new life springing from darkness …for the hope You provide that carries us out of the shadows of loneliness and near-death, and rocketing us forth into a fresh cycle of light, connection, hope and renewal. 

Thank You for being on each and every walk with me – and for my bloggy buddies, too – through every season, storm, shadow and silver lining. 

God, You rock!!

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Happy New Year to my friends and fellow bloggers…

Please join me in welcoming 2017 with some resilient sea-horsey sentiments, inspired by my new bloggy friend plainmama (yes, paint AND prose are just a couple of her many talents).

Consider the seahorse (species pictured are native to our Gulf coast) as we face the new year – may we be that creature which uses motion to stay the course, in which flexibly goes with the flow of the ocean’s current…confidently stretching ourselves to greater possibilities while instinctively coiling interdependently for anchoring:


Tranquil amid perpetual motion,

Simplicity dominates life;

Beauty and harmony in its movement,

The husband is the wife.

(Interesting side notes: The Latin genus hippocampus (hippos=horse, campus=sea monster) – the hippocampus is the deepest part of our brain governing memory, the part that looks like a seahorse deep within and is the first to go in dementia…and also flatlines when adrenaline rushes during a perceived threat, trauma or hardship. The sea horse does not stay with the same mate for life (fluidity!) and the female dumps thousands of eggs on the male at once because less than 1% survive…which is why I did this photo shoot since it is so, so difficult to keep seahorses in captivity (and octopi, a future blog topic) – carpe diem, baby!

Hey, God, thank You for another year of buoyancy amid the current and for keeping us in motion that we don’t get stuck, trapped or drowned – that You keep us moving amid the current of the universe without fail.

Fluent, fluid and flexible! Yes, God, please stretch uS to the ceiling of our potential while taking great comfort in the sanctity of each other….grounded and heaven-bound, all at once!

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The path to Christmas at our house seemed a lot like the one for which the day itself celebrates.

This year has been a long, hard journey…only to get to the end to find no room at the inn, in many ways.

The year has been a story of disabilities, disasters and way too many losses….but also one of perseverance, sharpening and victories, often disguised as hardships. I am highly confident that 2017 will be a year of rebuilding and grace.

So, there weren’t as many gifts under the tree this year, and many of them would have blended in with the latest Fruit of the Loom commercial….which may sound bleak for American children in this day and age – at least at first glance.

But in our culture of entitlement, I think it was just what the children needed to learn some valuable character lessons. 

Less yields more appreciation and a deeper sense of valuing “Stuff.” Less is just what was needed to drive home some salient points we parents otherwise try to teach our children with varying degrees of success. 

I can safely say it is much harder to teach some of these lessons unless a child experiences the sting of disappointment, of going without. A little humility yields great things!

There were lessons this morning in climbing out of a pit, of garnering one’s creativity and ingenuity to generate solutions to get where you want to be, to realizing your dreams. To being the one to make your own dreams come true instead of relying upon others and the world to make it happen FOR you. 

Actually, kind of like the very premises our country was founded upon!

Instead of a spirit of downtrodden weakness, a prevailing spirit of hope, faith and love.

And it didn’t come in the form of an expensive gift, it was not proud, it did not boast. There were no clanging cymbals.

My friends, God was right when He said the greatest of these is LOVE. This gift sat in at the back of the tree in a little silver, unmarked box, having gone mostly unnoticed until this morning.

The very youngest child patiently waited until all the gifts had been opened and he quietly padded over to his mother, the one in the room whose name was not on any of the gifts (because it’s all about the kids, right?) and he handed her the plain  tin box and eagerly waited for her to open it. 

His light blue eyes danced with anticipation as she carefully opened it and joyously received the greatest gift of all:


And Merry Christmas with love to you all! 

May God bless you richly with His love…but don’t look for it at the 5 star resort in the top-floor suite. It can be found in a quiet valley of solitude, where things are simple and lowly, sweet and holy.

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Can you see a few different paths in this photo?

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Crooked path my life has wrought,

A straight one just could not be sought

 

Had I walked a path so straight,

The views might not have been so great

 

I got to see both here and there

And felt like I went everywhere

 

Thank you, God, for varied ways

And different trails yet to blaze

 

The shortest route may seem the best

But zig-zag paths are truly blessed!

 

 

 

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Where I live, the concept of a New Horizon draws many a soul each day. 

They flock to these shores resolving to make a fresh start, a golden retirement, a new identity or a temporary escape from their reality.

Living by the sea, however, still necessitates daily grind. Laundry and dishes don’t go away, things break and need fixing and, bless our hearts, there is no escape from this fine, white sugar sand tracked into the house daily…but I am NOT complaining!

So my new horizon for 2017 will be to to see my world anew through the eyes of our visitors – to actually pause to BREATHE deeply during the breathtaking sunrises and sunsets. To be more mindful of the beauty surrounding me. To engage the 5 senses and escape back into my world here, anew.

2016 has been a year of tremendous transition in my life, and I bet in yours, too! 

I invite you to join me in rediscovering yourself and your calming peace in 2017….let us look through the lens together and see nothing but awe-inspiring beauty in the year to come.

Let us get out of the grind and into the moment!

Thanks, God, for an amazing year, for getting us through 2016 and delivering us to the doorstep of 2017. Thank You for all the things You’ve shown us and taught us. 

And most of all, for all the gifts, promise and beauty surrounding our lives. May we never get caught up in the grind and always see each moment of each day as a “present” from You. 

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