Water Off a Duck’s Back: How Forgiveness Protects Me

duck mallard wings over white duck

The day after my birthday, I woke up abruptly around 3am: “Forgive.” I was hoping to go back to sleep and let these “random synapses” pick a different word. Like, maybe “rest,” God? “Rest” is a nice word at 3am. That didn’t happen, so I was left with “forgive” rolling around in my head, at 3am. “Let offenses... Read More

Irish Determination

irish sign 16 slideshow

Ever since my younger sister, Annie, learned to talk, she has been paving my way to adventures I never would have attempted on my own. I remember when she called to invite me on a trip to Ireland. “What??!? You get a trip to Ireland for graduation?” I shrieked through the holes in the now-obsolete receiver. “Mom and Dad only got me a ring!” “Well,... Read More

Sunset Horseback Lessons

horseback lessons 2 big smile-2

I happened to catch the end of this, as the sun was going down… My husband had decided to give the older two kids an impromptu horseback riding lesson. My daughter was just slightly thrilled… In case you didn’t catch that… THRILLED! My oldest (and he does have the oldest child personality, even though he’s only the oldest by twenty fear-fraught... Read More

Runs Like a Deer

deer run 1b

I love the Fourth of July!! It’s my favorite gathering of family and friends all year, next to Christmas. But first thing this morning, I got to see the best fireworks display I’ll see all day: I love sunrises. I should see them more often. I’m back to running (truly running, not just walking). I dragged myself out of bed this morning and headed out the door,... Read More

Coincidental Snails

snail 10 dark

Some days feel like God is pushing me along… I’ve been training for a 5K and had hoped to participate in my first one within a few weeks. The training started better than expected! But when school let out, things slowed… to a stop. Last week, my husband booted me out the door (as tenderly as possible, of course) to go run! Having a mind of my own, and feeling groggy... Read More

Blood, Guts, Gore, and Brownies: Processing Grass-Fed Chickens

chicks in pen

My husband and I were up until 3am last Wednesday night, processing 32 massively oversized grass-fed chickens. Unfortunately, the chicks don’t hatch out of their shells, neatly plastic-wrapped in packages of white meat for me. This spring, our family has been redefining backyard chicken-keeping, by putting them in the front yard. I think it is the only relatively flat piece... Read More

My Cross Training Session

Jack 12 dog watches geese

I’ve taken up running this past week – which you already know, if you’re friends with me on Facebook. And you already know that my husband bought me some dedicated running shoes… And that I completely shocked myself yesterday morning, by running the distance of a 5K! I’ve been wondering what to do for cross training, on the lighter exercise days.... Read More

Fluffy, et al. Settle into Farm Life

cattle 12 scottish highland bull

I’ve posted before about my struggle to settle into farm life… …which must seem idyllic to some people, considering the number of families in our church who are moving to little acreages in the country recently. It’s just a lot of work, especially for a family with four very young children and a dad who works the equivalent of two other jobs. And it’s... Read More

Pearls and Priests (and a Hoof Trimmer)

oyster 8 shell flat scoop

I’m not proud of myself for this, but several weeks ago, if you had visited, you would have found me curled up on the sofa, throwing an impressive pity party for myself. I was afraid I had irritated a friend, exactly the type of thing that can color my entire world gloomy. Black confetti was raining down, and mentally I was poking pins into any upward-bound thought bubbles. This... Read More

Born in a Barn

fuzzy calf 14 red calf at hay feeder

When my husband and I first married, he was the type to hike up Pike’s Peak, his chin-length blonde hair temporarily pulled out of the way, then come back down and strum a little guitar beneath the Rockies. After we got married, he started hunting and cattle ranching. When he takes up a new venture, he never does it in a small way. At the risk of being too honest… this... Read More