I have been faced with an odd sort of dilemma: what to do when a quilt comes back.

  “Pinwheels for Poppy” was placed lovingly back into my hands by my Gramma just last week. I parted with this quilt only seventeen months ago sending it and many prayers in a box to my poppy’s nursing home. It was oddly sized, painstakingly pieced, and meant for one man only. I have been told that this quilt was loved and gave back plenty of comfort.

And now?

Well, it sits awkwardly in one place or another around our room. I cast my gaze to it every few minutes- it deserves more than the tears it brings to my eyes.  I alternate between being thankful that I can have it back knowing what it meant to Poppy, and finding it incredibly weird, eerie even.

So what is a quilter to do when a beloved piece returns to them?

Keep it closed up in a box ? Save it for a maybe-someday-son? Leave it out, hoping that one day the tears will subside?




It is the second day of September.  Lucas and his brother are off vanquishing evil, Gary has settled himself into his new bed, the rest of the house is quiet. Between laundry and other everyday tasks, I breathe. Summer is, thankfully, over.

As you can probably guess from my unexplained absence beginning sometime in mid-June, my summer was full. Too full. Despite the honest truth that there were moments of pure bliss and goodness, my summer was somewhat of a disaster. For eleven weeks, I worked an average of 50 hours, ate most of my meals in the car or at a desk, and had no full days off. It nearly killed me, and often succeeded in wounding my spirit. It cannot happen again. But rather than delve into the depths of my mistakes and the pain of living much too thin, I want to share with you the best moments then move on. I have learned from my mistake and have already put safeguards in place for myself this autumn.

Riverside- Early in the summer, I thought that my hours at the pool were too few. I was wrong, but unaware of that fact. In an attempt to bolster my paycheck I offered to host off-site swimming lessons for COTS. It was an excellent decision. The first few weeks were bitter cold in that outdoor pool with the broken heater and cloudy overhead skies, but it was well worth it to see some kids making huge strides in the swimming. Some of my proudest moments as a swim instructor to date happened in the eight weeks I was teaching at Riverside. By the end, I could hardly believe I would be getting paid on top of all the joy and triumph I felt on behalf of my students.

Four- Lucas and I managed to slip off for a couple of days to celebrate our wedding anniversary in what could only be described as perfect for us. We went to an arcade, drank tea, stayed at an old schoolhouse converted into a hotel, watched Harry Potter, and went swimming.  One of the best anniversaries yet, by far.

Farms- More than any other year in my life I have had to joy of spending some spare hours on our local farms this summer. The abundance of fruit and veggies has made me giddy with delight for this odd little city where we live. I have probably managed to eat my own weight in berries and peas in the last two months. It was also really awesome to share these places with my friends and their friends.

Canada- We just returned last night from a whirlwind trip to visit my family. It was among the greatest blessings I have had the privilege of which to partake. I finally got to visit my mum and dad in their new home and meet their friends (and new cat!). I was so happy to see that they have found themselves in the midst of a community that loves and respects them. I have missed my sister, and saw her for too short of a time, but a great time nonetheless. We even had the rare joy of visiting my dear friends Ron & Becky for a morning.  My only regret is that these people whom I love so dear must live so far away- but perhaps that makes our visits all the sweeter.

I find myself believing that the coming of September should be celebrated with the same mix of exuberance and reflection that is usually saved for January.  This is the only time of year that has ever really felt like a new beginning anyways. The summer, though spotted with some beautiful memories, was too much and I am craving the changing of the season, so to speak.

So, here we are: moving forward, moving on. Leaving ourselves some breathing room for the autumn so that we don’t repeat the mistakes.




eight weeks ago i missed out by not stopping the car at that little country produce stand.
i have been pining over the lost opportunity of wild asparagus ever since…. until today.




Slowly- very slowly- we are all being coaxed outside by promises of sun and of warmth
and the allure of brightly coloured flowers.
(it’s still pretty early for summer in my opinion though) 



isn’t it funny how the weather has been tragically beautiful and my kitten more cuddley
but the time to enjoy both is so rare and so fleeting?

sometimes it is just wonderful to be done
(when the due date is six months past, but you know love will overcome all that time) 

like two ships passing in the night: there is little time for tea but i am finding myself loving him more in the moments we find between activity.

we drove more than twelve hours round-trip so that i could have  tea with my best friend.
it was exactly what i needed and it was the best cup of tea i have ever had.

yesterday was moving day. today as i reminised how my sister and i used to fight over who cleaned the toilet on cleaning day: no one faught me on the subject today.

The vague nature of this blog has become aparent as of late. I suppose that you could blame it on my limited time (there are only so many hours left in a day after working two jobs and taking care of life) or perhaps on my new fascination with habit– a blog in which the simply stated is beautified with everyday photographs. Would I fault those things? Maybe a little, but not really. The realitive silence and simply stated here is quite honestly a reflection of the stillness in my mind as of late.

But, in the interest of not leaving you, my loved ones, in the dark, there should be more said. And here it is:

I write this surrounded by boxes [half-full], a cat [currently ignoring me] and a cup of tea to bolster my courage. The boxes, now numbering above 20, began about a month ago. It was a warm day in late February when a letter arrived in our mailbox declaring our rent woul dbe increasing; we had the choice to stay and pay or leave. More than anything I wanted to stay, but realistically that rent would be too much for us to handle without getting into financial trouble. We pondered options which ranged from difficult to implausable and all were turned down. Thus, we knew that we would need to move on from this place.

I spent days, perhaps even weeks, scouring rental adds and mortgage options in our area, but came up empty handed when each lead was followed to its end. Our current apartment was the best option, but it wasn’t an option at all. I then spent days trying to figure out how we could press ourselves to the limit to make enough and make it work, but quickly realized that we were already reaching the breaking point when it came to energy and patience. The endurance at our limit would prove to last two, maybe three months at most, before damaging us somehow.

There are just somethings that are not worth that kind of prospect.

(Here is where I may get slightly philosophical on you, but it is in the interest of honesty and explaination- besides, what is a little philosophy among friends?)

I have never liked nor admired the phrase “Two steps forward, one step back”. To me it has long seemed incredably foolish and terribly unnecessary. But I have learned that, sometimes, you really do take two steps forward only to realize that it was one step too many and you are now required to muster up as much humility as can be attained taking that one step back. This is what has happened to us. Or, rather, this is what we are in the process of doing: going through actions that lead down a path of hopeful humility  in that one step back.

Just as a new wife is eager to please her new husband, so is a wife rejoined with her husband after an extended absence. A year ago I was anxious to move out of the generous hospitality of my in-laws home and into a place of our own. My own. Desires, seemingly pure (to care for my husband, create family, become independant together) became something other when they drowned out the voice of God in our lives. I greatly doubt that moving into our own apartment was plainly against God will: the process was blessed and has been often in the last year. It was, however, more for me than anyone else. I desired to be a good wife, but ultimately got caught up in idealism and not biblical definitions.  At the heart of the matter there was selfishness and pride.

We took our steps forward at my insistance, and now we must take our step back in humility.

And there it is: when you no longer know what to do, it is time to go back to the last thing.

With the generous offer of my in-laws, by friday we will be moving back both proverbially and physically to the last place. We have an assumed timeline of 6 months to collect ourselves, re-centre ourselves, save money, and then take one step forward at God’s leading alone. The timeline, unlike the purposes, is flexable and subject to change.

The decision was difficult, the process is proving somewhat easy but only because I now recognize it as undoubtfully necessary.   I have found packing the boxes to be an oddly formed version of catharsis. Above all, my thoughts have become settled, void of worry, rich in peace. The whole process is rather beautiful in a heartbreaking way. It is good because God is good and He is faithful even to the end.

So that is life right now.


a tea for everything

More Pictures

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