Small Moments

If I were to capture the small moments of my day, to remember in fifty years, I would want to remember…

Bea, talking in her crib. Not ready to get up, but awake, greeting her day.

My MOPS group, doing community, life, and mothering together; Learning to speak and receive truth into our lives.

Sun shining into the playroom; Reading Hafiz while Bea makes “strawberry waffles” in her kitchen.

Stopping playtime so that Bea can pray for her friends – listing her MOPS buddies first and moving on to her cousins and playdate pals, hands folded, eyes screwed shut, thankful for her own small community.

Last minute dinners with longtime friends, letting our kids play together as we end the meal with port and scotch, marveling at how life has continued to keep us together.

Weekly, lively discussions about faith and life, things important and fleeting, meeting over drinks and dinner in the middle of the same restaurant, building relationships that have spanned over six years, watching as we progress in our own theologies.

Choosing to read next to Frank, rather than watch TV, constantly interrupting to share something new, and challenging each other to continually learn.

What are some of your small, daily moments?

Linked up with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday, a time to write without editing for five minutes.



“Come! Come, ‘Ma’oes!” Bea eagerly led any guests to our home straight to the tomato plants, towering over her 11-month self. Once she discovered our garden, and especially the delicious cherry tomatoes, Bea wanted to share her wealth with others. At any given moment, her small mouth would be stuffed with red (and often green) tomatoes, as though the plant would suddenly wither and she would have only what she had squirreled into her cheeks.

Tomatoes off the vine
Tomatoes off the vine

Many guests over the summer bonded with Bea behind those tomato plants. You knew you were part of her pack if she led you to the raised beds at the back of our yard. This small act of hospitality reminded me how simple giving to our friends can be. People were delighted to share her tomatoes, and not just because she was adorably offering them. I don’t think relationships require much, and I often need to remember that generosity and hospitality can start with simply sharing a few cherry tomatoes off the vine.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday, a time to sit and write without editing for 5 minutes.


I’ll be honest: This prompt was tough for me. The word “hero” often causes me to cringe; I feel it’s so overused. The local news segment on everyday heroes invariably include the categories of teacher, soldier, firefighter, grandparent. People rarely cite their accountant, dentist, garbage collector, or lawyer as their everyday heroes.

Frank feels I need to broaden my definition of hero. I tend to think the title should only go to people who catch babies falling from burning buildings. He’s more generous: People who nobly influence our lives are heroes. The teacher who helps a child understand that quarter past 1:00 is not 1:25; the garbage collector who leaves the bin standing upright; the dental hygienist who takes the time to gently scrape the plaque away, rather than digging at it. My view is that they are simply doing their jobs; His is that they are taking the time to do the best at their job.

Since I am a goal-oriented person, and since I love the art of handwritten notes, I decided to take this as a challenge. Over the next few months, I want to look for true everyday heroes in my life and write them a thank-you note. Maybe it’s about time the garbage collector knew how much I appreciate an upright bin.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday, a time to sit and write without editing for 5 minutes.


I’ve never been one to have a best friend. I even feel funny calling Frank my best friend (probably after reading Committed…) My friends fill different needs in my life – some offer encouragement in my faith journey, others are practical problem-solvers, others joined me in motherhood and offer grace and encouragement during this season.

One of my friends, Robyn and I have known each other since our freshman year of high school. We went to different colleges but both ended up back in Denver. Years ago (5 or 7 maybe?) we started walking once a week after work. The parks have changed over the years and there have been a few breaks – holidays, the month after Bea was born, but we have remained consistent. We even trained for a 5k run together. (And I was firmly reminded that I’m not a fan of running.)

Robyn is an amazing encouragement. During our 2-3 mile walk, we talk about everything. We process, we vent, sometimes we problem-solve, but mostly the other listens. It’s so encouraging to be with a friend who has the gift of listening. What an encouragement! To let the other simply be with her processing.

Now that tax season is approaching, Frank and I have been talking about our schedule. I’m part of 2 monthly book clubs, a weekly book club, and my weekly walk with Robyn. When thinking about things to cut back on during this busy time, I can’t imagine foregoing the encouragement they all offer, but especially those walks – that time of doing life with a friend is such an encouragement.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday, a time to sit and write without editing for 5 minutes.


From my corner of the couch, by the window, I see…

A bookcase, overflowing with art history, travel, mountaineering, poetry

Books that reflect who we were and where we hope to go

Knickknacks moved to higher shelves, out of the reach of small hands

Because I don’t want “no, don’t touch” to dominate my day

Dusty finger prints on … everything

Because, who has time?

Pine needles left over from our Christmas tree, even though I swept three times

Our tree with the fewest decorations, but probably my favorite because it reflects us most

Daisy, curled up next to the couch

Our first “child,” who is so patient with her new role as “dog” in our home

Three place mats at our table

Because Bea is too old for a tray on her booster seat now

A china cabinet, filled with wedding china and my grandmother’s dishes

Because, even though we don’t use them often, I love being reminded of special occasions

What do you see, from where you are?

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday.


I was an extremely good kid growing up. I very rarely got in trouble at school, and was only written-up once, in first grade. My friend, Anthony got into a fight with another boy (whose name I can’t remember) on the playground. I stood in the tanbark, watching the two 6-year-olds push each other. I don’t think it lasted long before the yard teacher, who was also Anthony’s mother, marched over. The boys were separated and the one boy was given a “pink slip” for fighting. I was given one for watching. It never occurred to me to contest the fairness or to tell my parents that night. I was too embarrassed.

The next day, instead of playing, we each chose a library book and sat on the wall, watching our peers run and jump. We were supposed to read, but I cried the entire recess. The boy scooted over and patted my arm; he was used to missing recess. He told me not to worry, but I was inconsolable.

Thinking back on that moment, I am amazed at the grace that boy offered. I never played with Anthony after that day and I can’t remember the other boy’s name, but his gesture has stuck with me. I need to remember this moment in times when I forget to offer grace to others; when I need it most for myself.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday.


“There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.”

Edith Wharton

Some days it is easy to be the candle – to give light. When Bea and I are reading together and she “reads” the words she knows in her books, I am encouraged to model for her a love of literature. When we are cooking together as a family or playing. Sometimes I feel like a candle with my friends – encouraging, listening, being an active participant in their lives.

Other times, I am exhausted and all I can do is reflect the light. On those days, when Frank reads with Bea, I can affirm the words with her, even though I don’t want to snuggle in. Maybe it means letting someone else in our community take on a friend’s needs; that I can be supportive without actually, physically being there.

I can get discouraged when I don’t feel like I am “the candle” all the time and this quote is a wonderful reminder to me that, even as a mirror, I am still reflecting light. Our Advent reading the other day was John 1:8, about how John was not the Light, but he was simply a witness to the Light. That being “simply a witness” is enough.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday.


I grew up in a conservative town, went to a conservative church, and was surrounded by conservative ideas. When I graduated from high school, I wanted to experience something completely different – something as far removed from my home as possible. I picked a 4-year university located in the heart of Paris. Paris is anything but conservative. I learned new, exciting world views, from religion and politics to social justice and living out my faith. I found a place that welcomed the questions that had not been so welcome in high school. I grew and changed. And, I missed my home. After four years, I returned. Not to the same town, but to the same state. I realized that, while I needed to go, experience, question, discover, I also needed to come back, digest, process, and settle in.

Now, (ten years later!) with a family and a house it’s not as easy to just pick up and leave when a change is needed. We’ve had to figure out how to explore and discover while physically staying here. It seems challenging at times, but I find it’s still so important to allow my ideas, my point of view, and my set ways fly to a new perspective.

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker‘s Five Minute Friday.