I Give Thanks…


I give thanks when I see resilience in action.

-A parent helping to support their child through college when he had to pay his own way through school.

-A parent goes on to be a thoughtful grand parent and great grand parent when her parents died when she was in high school, and she had no one to support her when she was raising her children.

-A college professor who brings his undergraduate students together to paint a house for a neighbor when he spent his childhood living as a missionary child with only one parent in a country in Africa.

-A teacher who never took a trip outside of the U.S. quietly financially supports several students to take a school trip to Europe.

I love catching people in quiet moments doing for others what was not done for them in  fresh, new ways and with no regrets. This is what I call pure hopefulness.

I took the above picture at sunrise this morning in Reno, Nevada.

Happy Thursday!

Artwork Made by Rachel


Artwork Made by One of My Students ~Rachel, Grade 8,

In sorting through my teaching things in the garage, I found this cool water painting. The painting has such a playful, cartoon, and bubble gum young feel to it.  I give thanks for Rachel…I hope she is enjoying her adult years of life now.

I loved the playful work my students turned in for art assignments.  There was something thoughtful and playful happening at the same time.  When it came to grading these kinds of assignments…I was looking for something original, creative, and made by the student.


Regarding The Garage Cleaning

I’ve made about 8 trips to the Marion County Recycling Center to literally throw unused metal, mixed paper, cardboard, computer towers and monitors, plastics, paint cans, and batteries in collection containers.  Each time I leave the recycling area…I take in a big breath, because my car is empty.  It feels wonderful.  Slowly, I get a rush of emotion like some people do when they come off of an amusement roller coaster… I think to myself, “I want to do that again.”  Clearing out areas of the garage has been dirty and messy and not without its sentimental moments. Slowly though, a glimmer of hope is taking shape, because there are new things to come, new ways to use this over sized two car garage with a work shop area. I can feel the intuitive part of my thinking beginning to turn over new ideas.  Letting go of my notebooks from high school, college, and my notes from teaching has reminded me of my desire to learn new things.  These ideas haven’t taken any concrete shape yet.  All I know is I want to study, take more classes, and learn more things.  Perhaps with a third or fourth degree, I will have my future all worked out. In the mean time, thanks for joining me on this journey; this has been a true journey of discovery.

I think bloggers are like the radio DJ’s I listened to in the past. Radio DJ’s  were these people that had a command of our time and of our entertainment.  People who had a connection with their audience through one sensory organ…hearing. Larger than life people…people with humor and bravado.  People who always surprised me when I met them, because somehow their physical person didn’t usually match the person I thought their voice sounded like in my mind.  The dissonance always threw me, until the DJ would talk…and then I would be soothed by the sound of his or her voice.

My guess is if people who read my blog met me in person, they would experience this same cognitive dissonance.  People, like life, rarely turn out to be what we thought they would be like.

One of the reasons I am a blogger is because I have felt a tug on my heart to find the joyful and beautiful things in life and share what I’ve found.  I look for that sweet moment each day when I’m struck with how beautiful this place is, or the sweetness of a person I’ve met, or the craft work of someone’s hands touches me. I look for or an event that both lightens and warms my heart at the same time.  These moments lift me out of my daily life and have created a joyful path for me to follow over the years.  The sharing of these moments is the purpose and shape of my blog.

Thanks for taking in what I’ve been discovering about life.

Happy Sunday!






Letting Go Update


Picture taken by Ben Guenther

“When the spirit does not work with the hand there is no art.”  -Leonardo daVinci

I want to share an update on my Lenten challenge of getting rid of unused items and cleaning out the garage. The work of sorting the garage came with the job of going through the boxes of my teaching material.  In my school materials, I found this picture taken by Ben Guenther who was one of my students.  He turned in this picture on a poster board for an art assignment back in the day.  I think this picture is striking…and I like how Ben caught this butterfly in such a majestic way.  I have more student art work to share in upcoming posts.

My Lenten cleaning challenge is about 60% complete. I have successfully moved about 5-10 big pieces of furniture to a relative who needed furniture.  It was fun to watch the 2 Papasan chairs, a couch, a work table, a set of bunk beds, a set of Corelle dishes, extra silverware, linens, etc, all loaded up on a truck.

I am planning a garage sale, a delivery of TY stuffed animals to my daughter’s house in Reno, a delivery of teaching supplies to a fellow teacher friend, a trip to the recycling center and a trip to the city dump.  After I’ve sorted through the garage, I am looking forward to parking a car on at least one side.

By far the hardest things for me to let go of are the boxes of my children’s art work and school papers.  I have a strong connection to that time of life.  It’s taken me years to let go of these papers.  Once I realized my children don’t want their special drawings from 1st grade, it struck me it really was time to let them go.

I’m determined to stop holding on to things and live in a more present and a more minimalistic style.

This process of “Letting go” has been very cathartic.

Happy Monday!