Wednesday, October 18, 2017


We have two giant maple trees in our backyard. Silver maples? In any case, while they both look lovely in fall, the leaves on the wester of the two (you know . . . more west than the other one) always become just shockingly, unabashedly RED. SO so red. Completely and boldly. (The other maple is a bit more interested in nuance and subtlety [or maybe just isn’t quite as confident and showy as the other].) From the couch in our living room I look up through our highest windows and see nothing but these dramatically red leaves pitched against blue blue sky. It’s the most lovely thing in the world. And I don’t know what it is about fall leaves – maybe just their fleeting nature – but I find that my adoration and love for them is always rimmed with panic over the fact that their being here means . . . they will soon be gone. The only time I feel this sensation more keenly is with one of my brand new newborns. And it’s just leaves! Is it more than leaves? Is it that whole constant ill-fitting nature of earth life? The one where our spirits chafe against the unfamiliar nature of endings when we are built to feel and keep every good thing eternally?

I don’t know. Maybe I just really love fall leaves. When I’m looking at them I find myself doubting that I could ever grow accustomed to them or take them for granted like I often do with their green summer selves.


Of course those top pictures didn’t actually showcase that particular tree – just general backyard fallness; and these last pics showed our maples a few weeks before the color change (along with Summer . . . who, every single day, takes off whatever I have put her in . . . in favor of summery tops, and several layers of shorts and skirts). But the pictures seemed close enough to whatever I was trying to express.


Anyway, we went for a little hike with the kids between conference sessions several weeks ago. Hiking with three toddler/babies always begins full joy and excitement. That lasts about 15 minutes before both Mette and Summer are crying and refusing to walk and insisting that only I will do for holding them. Nevertheless . . . it’s good to get out with our little crew. (Even if we have to send Abe to go find the van and drive it to meet us at an early exit off the trail rather than finish the whole hike as planned. And don’t worry. That face he is making in the first picture below is just in jest. Mostly.)

In any case, happy fall y’all!

Photo Oct 05, 10 38 00 AMPhoto Sep 23, 7 31 51 AMPhoto Sep 23, 7 32 45 AM

I’ve Missed Writing . . . and a little bit of etc.

Oh goodness how I’ve missed writing. I’d love to spend a portion of every day gathering words and trying out various combinations to see how I might best express some feeling or experience. Very often I find that in the writing of something I’m better able to make sense of and feel appreciation for it – all this living business . . . and all this thinking business. But, as it is, I am only able to choose a small smattering of unnecessary activities (partially due to the busyness of life . . . and partially due to my own accidental wasting of time that could be put to better use) and so I tend to rotate the activities that I give that extra time to. Unfortunately, when I’ve spent too much time away from writing and recording, I find myself confronting such a mental room-full of unorganized material that I can hardly make heads or tails of it -- can hardly combine it in any meaningful way. I can’t sift or organize it all properly into keep and throw away piles and so I just . . . nervously open the door to the whole room . . . unsure if we will see the important bits or just the clutter.

Photo Sep 20, 6 56 06 PMPhoto Sep 20, 6 53 59 PMPhoto Sep 20, 4 33 13 AMPhoto Sep 20, 6 58 19 PMPhoto Sep 20, 10 28 25 AMPhoto Sep 20, 11 24 53 PM

It’s nearly Halloween. Halloween seems to have somehow become the mark in the year when, and always with surprise, I realize that we are really into the routines and normalcy of our school year. Somehow we’ve found our new normal without ever even knowing how it happened exactly.


I worry so much about figuring everything out, doing everything I need to do, and raising these kids right. And yet . . . it just goes on happening the tiniest bit each day. And I am always looking back in slight wonder over how it all happened despite me and my frettings. There are some regrets of course – missing things gone by, not having done my best with or appreciated fully certain other things. But, for the most part, it seems that most things turn out just fine, my measly efforts have been enough (or magnified beyond their own small level) and my worrying was unnecessary.

Photo Sep 13, 9 09 16 PMPhoto Sep 13, 9 15 15 PMPhoto Sep 14, 2 06 51 AMPhoto Sep 21, 7 02 50 AMPhoto Sep 18, 11 06 29 AMPhoto Sep 18, 11 44 07 AMPhoto Sep 22, 2 38 22 PMPhoto Sep 22, 2 39 45 PMPhoto Sep 30, 1 25 26 PM

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