How to Begin Training Good Workers (spoiler: Don’t say “Go clean your room”)

An adorable little freeloader enters your world. First, he creates mounds of laundry and dirty diapers. Not long after, dirty dishes begin to multiply. Then suddenly, the entire kitchen floor becomes sticky and grimy in 1.9 seconds of your back being turned. Books and knick knacks litter the floor, because your little freeloader has also become a little ten-month-old tornado. Continue reading “How to Begin Training Good Workers (spoiler: Don’t say “Go clean your room”)”

Golden Tones of Late Summer (with kids crying in the background)

The loveliness of the Shenandoah Valley welcomes the change of season a little more each day; days of late summer mixed in with days of early fall. Katelyn and I have been enjoying the scenery on the drive to and from the farm where she and Ethan work on a butchering crew.  So we took a drive out that way the other day, to try to capture some of it on her camera. Yellows and golds are some of my favorite color tones, both inside my home and outside of it. Goldenrod may be Continue reading “Golden Tones of Late Summer (with kids crying in the background)”

God of the Very Small

{I wrote this several years ago. The photos were taken by Katelyn during a family day at the Blue Ridge Parkway, although not the same day referenced in this article.}

“Look at this, Mom!” My daughter ran up and handed me a lacy green fern leaf. We both gazed at it for a moment, a delicate and detailed specimen.

Our family was enjoying a day together with friends on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We had just gazed Continue reading “God of the Very Small”

Lessons of the Field- Part 1

Such a glorious time of year; plants of all types growing and blooming all around. Across the road from our house in the farmer’s field, some kind of golden grain waves in the wind. Don’t you love seeing a fresh new plant burst forth out of the soil? It’s a miracle, and I’ve never met a person who didn’t enjoy the process of planting a seed and watching it grow. It’s a good time to pause and consider this question: “In order for these plants to grow and bloom or bear fruit, what has to happen first?” Think about something Jesus said: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a kernel of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” (John 12:24)
Continue reading “Lessons of the Field- Part 1”

One More Year. Or, in the process of letting go.

Graduation season. A familiar time of year; we send a card or attend a ceremony and offer our congratulations. Only, this year, it’s different. The winds of time are blowing and I constantly hear a little chorus in my head, “One more year, one more year, one more year.”

How clearly I remember Continue reading “One More Year. Or, in the process of letting go.”

Keeping the Joy in Mothering – Part 1

A young mother of three little ones recently asked me, “How do you keep the joy in mothering?” Ah yes… such a question.
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Those days when you go from changing a dirty diaper, to breaking up an argument between the toddler and the four-year-old, to nursing, to looking for shoes, to getting a snack, to nursing again, to wondering where your little boy found those knee-length pink socks he is wearing, to trying in vain to find a clean kitchen towel, to helping the kids do something creative and then wondering why you did it because it only entertained the kids for about 3.25 minutes Continue reading “Keeping the Joy in Mothering – Part 1”