Wednesday, July 22, 2015


I’ve got nothing, nothing for you
All was spent for others’ care
I dug deep, but I am empty
And such mines are everywhere.
Every gem and golden nugget,
Every sonnet, every song
I have given to the children
So, pardon, if I’ve done you wrong.

I’ve got nothing, nothing for you
I have paid a pricey fare
To tread upon a different planet
View the castles in the air
And yet I do not regret it
Though in poverty, I leave —
Of more worth than what I’ve given
Are the gifts that I receive.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Time Flows

The clock pours out its empty string
Of numbers - stringing me along with
Promised meaning - meaning I will know
Where all these strings of numbers go

Time flows like everything else
So slowly - else I’m swept away when it
Move quickly - quickly learn to breath
Whether I’m drowning or dying for the water to seethe

The clock is a paradox of purpose
Self-trapping - when we purpose it not to
It’s freeing - freeing us to learn to live
With the contradictions that its numbers give.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Naptime Reflections - Missing My Makeup

For me, this is a season of sacrifices. Most often they are little sacrifices, but they really challenge me nonetheless.

Yesterday I was telling my husband that it feels like I haven't put on makeup since my first daughter was born in 2012. With two littles, I've pushed doing my hair and makeup every single day to a pretty low spot on the priority list. I do miss having the extra time to do it - it's a wonder what a straightener or a little powder can do to make a woman go from feeling frumpy to fabulous.

There's a real tension here, because we obviously shouldn't be relying on makeup to make ourselves feel good, or in an attempt to impress others. In addition, the Bible says to let our beauty be of the inward variety. At the same time, that doesn't mean there's something inherently wrong or sinful about a little honest primping. We just have to make sure we have the two types of beauty rightly ordered in our minds.

Anyhow, these are just some thoughts I've been batting around. Agree? Disagree? Beauty can be a sticky subject...but maybe it doesn't have to be. I just haven't solidified all of my thinking on it, yet.

All that to say, maybe at this time of life I'll just have to be content with having washed my hair and put on chapstick... :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Naptime Reflections - Feelings & Hard Things

I had a great conversation with my mother-in-law about hard things. Hard things like the death toll in Nepal. Hard things like loved ones going through a horrible struggle. You fill in the blank.

My mom-in-law works on Christian curriculum for orphans overseas. She's been to several countries and continents and seen the devastation in the children's lives firsthand. Being an emotional person (like I am), she talked about how hard it is not to take work home with her, and go to pieces over the difficulty she sees in everyday life, not understanding why God allows it.

She told me, essentially, that she's learning that faith is an exercise of the mind. We have to discipline our mind so as not to let the feelings take over - not quash the feelings or pretend they aren't there - but to hang on tight to what we know to be true about God's character. It reminded me of something a Bible teacher shared with me in 6th grade (oh, so long ago).

It's the fact-faith-feeling train! Haha. But really, "fact-faith-feeling" is a pithy representation of an ordered way to think. It means that feelings should be in submission to what we know as fact (from Scripture) and what we hold to by faith. This is my personal lifelong challenge and - I suspect - a challenge for everyone at some point in their spiritual walk.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Naptime Reflections - T. Swift

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the part of the show where I micro-blog about topics on which I'm thinking, probably mostly during the time when Ellie and Kate are napping. Thus the title. I'm so clever, I know. 

I don't listen to Taylor Swift's latest album, "1989," anymore. 

I'm a big fan of Taylor Swift's album-before-last, "Red." So naturally, I was excited when her new album arrived, and listened to it voraciously. 

That is, until I began singing it around the house...and my little mini-me started joining in the fun. 

"Boys only want love if it's torture/don't say I didn't say I didn't warn ya," I belted out in my best pop voice, until a little echo issued from my oldest daughter, Ellie, who is less than three years old. "Boys...!" she sang, and suddenly, I really heard the lyrics that were coming out of my mouth. I reviewed the rest of the album, and found myself appalled with the messages I had been pouring into my brain - and my child's brain - as I crooned Taylor's tunes. 

This is my disclaimer that the content of T. Swift's latest album is not appropriate for children. There are many instances where the lyrics are nakedly sexual at worst, and worldly at best. I am a firm believer in discernment in media. We imbibe messages from what we read, watch and listen to whether we are conscious of it or not, and so do our children.  


Loud music plays, punchy and proud
And I sit, nervous and cowed
Left in a world that doesn’t need me.

One wants to be seen, to be adored
Rather be hated than to be ignored
This is how I live when I’m losing.

Say, what is my true goal, if I have one?
For loves and priorities die with the sun
Sin and solace descend with the darkness.

The music plays, fervent and free
And I sit, and contemplate me, for
Thought is a world that will always take me.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Naptime Reflections - Facebook is Bad for Me

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the part of the show where I micro-blog about topics on which I'm thinking, probably mostly during the time when Ellie and Kate are napping. Thus the title. I'm so clever, I know. 

Facebook is bad for me. It's not bad in and of itself, but my actions concerning it just tend to be bad. Every time I get on for an extended period of time, I have ample opportunity to see how great everyone's lives look compared to mine, how pretty everyone looks compared to me, how much fun everyone is having while I'm at home. I bet that I've been the recipient of these comparisons, too, which makes me either want to laugh or cry, depending on my mood (today is a laugh-while-crying sort-of day). 

The truth is, I don't need to scroll through my newsfeed and be all up in other people's business anyway. It has no meaningful, positive impact on my life. Sure, I might know which college acquaintance is having the next baby, but I also think I'd probably survive without such information. I already have software that kicks me off Facebook after 10 minutes, but I might have to change it to 5. It has not proven to be something that encourages me to godliness - not that I believe everything has to have a direct "spiritual" value (watching Cutthroat Kitchen, for example...heh) - but my spending time on Facebook has been a temptation for me to indulge in discontent, idolatry and materialism. Yuck.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Naptime Reflections - Fatigue

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the part of the show where I micro-blog about topics on which I'm thinking, probably mostly during the time when Ellie and Kate are napping. Thus the title. I'm so clever, I know. 

This is a stage of life in which I am constantly very tired. For one, Kate (10 1/2 months) still wakes up 2 or 3 times per night (don't ask me why, because I don't know). Add this to the general tiredness that comes with parenting littles, and you can bet there are days, such as today, where it's all I can do to interact with my children with an iota of patience or good humor.

Days like today it helps me to remember the Incarnation; specifically, that Jesus Christ, who became fully human, was certainly pushed to his limits of fatigue at times. He knows what it feels like to have fraying emotions, or the temptation to snap or just throw the towel in. He knows the will-breaking power of sleeplessness. He knows the unpleasant throbbing of a headache. All of that, he experienced, and yet was without sin. And now he sits at the right hand of God interceding for us. I'm so thankful that Christ, as he prays for us, is no stranger to the mundane things with which we can struggle so profoundly. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Naptime Reflections - Death

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the part of the show where I micro-blog about topics on which I'm thinking, probably mostly during the time when Ellie and Kate are napping. Thus the title. I'm so clever, I know. 

We're going to open this new blog series with a nice, easy topic. #sarcasm


While we were driving to church last week, Chris caught me gazing out the window distractedly.

"What are you thinking?" he asked.

I had, in fact, been looking at the gravestones in a nearby cemetery. "Oh, ashes to ashes; dust to dust," I answered, feeling embarassed. I blushed and tried to justify myself. "Not to be morbid or anything."

Chris quickly stopped me, pointing out that culture likes to call anything to do with death "morbid," when in fact death is a regular part of, well, life. Plus, thinking about it can be good in a number of ways. Not least of which is that it can temper our tendency to idolize things such as youth, beauty, and material wealth. Particularly as Christians, our theology of death is pretty clear-cut, and is fraught with hope, given our belief in salvation and the sovereignty of God among other things. Of all people, we should perhaps be least afraid of the topic.

That's all for now. Peace.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

When I'm Alone

Another haiku, because my brain is tired. 

Hopefully I’ll be
As sturdy as a pine tree
Dropping this large load

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Rest Ache

The ice-stars rise to the surface of my heart and crack
Slowly, slavishly, crackling, they break and leave
Rivulets of tears in their place.
There are peeps of yellow blooms through my eyelids.
Golden-orange sun on blowing rivers of green.
This, my heartache. This, my symphony of rest.
Heartache. Rest ache.
Heart rise. Hope rise.
Chest fall. Rest falls.
Let it be, as you called forth the blossoms,
Snowy on the mat of green and grey you built.
You built. So let it be
Eyes open all way, always
Upon the open field of
Eternal Spring.
Lord, I call out and
cry out and
sigh out, to
let it be.

and Soon.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Darkness Marching & Lullaby for Lovers

Hi, friends. Well, my poems this week are not great, but I said I would post them, so here they are!

The first one I scratched out while I was listening to The Hobbit soundtrack. You're allowed to laugh at it.

Darkness Marching

Blood-pulse steps --
Dark pocks above the parapets --
Stains upon the sky --
Here we come to die.

Okay, okay. I know. Catch your breath. This one you may also laugh at, though it's less funny. I find myself at a loss for how to write about real love. I was fine at writing saccharine verse about unrequited crushes (as I mentioned in the last post), but now that I'm married and it's twenty million times deeper than anything I've experienced before, the words don't want to flow as easily. So laugh with pity, at least.

Lullaby for Lovers

Sleep, my lord, a gentle sleep,
A silence deep where you can rest
Apart from churlish cares of day
Crouching, rock-like, on your breast

And I, beside you, heart awake
By edge of Dreamland, vigil hold
To ruin what weapons I bear -
My sins that slay with edges cold

In hopes that when the dawn peeps in
I will not further break what’s broke-
And be only a balm to you,
As worthy as my vow bespoke.

If in our sleep, love, I can kill
The things that make ring false this line -
“I love you most” - you know I will.
Until then, rest, by God’s design.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Poetry x4

Greeting, friends!

I've always loved writing poetry, and as part of my weekly time out, I've taken up composing verse again for the good of my soul. And it has been good for me. The main difference between my poetry now versus what I wrote in middle and high school is the breadth of content - where my old work consisted mainly of maudlin love poetry, my new work embraces the freedom of topic that is necessarily a part of writing. I'll post the last four weeks of poems here for your consumption, and try to update my blog with the weekly verse from here on out.

Also - Whoever can figure out what "Two-Faced Am I" is about wins a gold star and a smiley face.



Odes to beauty are reserved for lovers.
And why must this be? For a beautiful heart
Is most bright to behold. And for beauty, I die.
The heart of my friend ‘cross a grey expanse.
Words I grasp for with eyes, but misty they are
Sans breath and sans form. And for beauty, I die.
What things life paints on the endless canvas.
Colors infinite! But the shades of my soul
Are too far to dip my brush in. And for beauty, for beauty,
I die.

Two-Faced Am I

Two-faced am I, wherefore I know well -
My true heart estranged, I shiver sickly inside
And exhale with ugly rattle, a pebble in a shell
Composing words while understanding I elide.

Devious I am - I, deviant, divisive, devise
Ways to exalt myselfishness, selflessness mime
Mud-blind with my defectiveness, let ailments arise
And call them harmless, as if ’twill buy me time.

Penitent am I, cowering ‘neath black cowl of sin -
Loving, brightening (trying) the corners of a little heart
My failing heart you can’t hear dully thumping here within,
Thereby mirroring hope I cherish, end to start.

The Writing Excuse

The curse of fatigue
Is the atrophy of art
Says wife and mother

Sonnet of Ink

Upon meandering, brimful brooks of light
And rampant tempests breaking at the seams
And hov’ring over mellow shades of night -
The mediocre, sick for morning’s beams -

Scrolls outward, line of black for beauty’s birth
And inward, gentle curve for linguist’s life
And skyward, transcendental in its worth
Into the depths of hell for dormant strife

Some souls it scratches out with patient nod
And some it outlines, present but unknown
And some it grabs with passion of a bawd
To claim the lusty fare for it alone

The latter one am I, ne’er to be free
Perhaps you saw ink-colored blood in me?

Thursday, February 12, 2015

I Hate Goodbyes.

Rather amusingly, the last time I posted here was right after recovering from a lovely family-wide stomach bug...and guess what. I just recovered from another one. I know, I know - exciting details of life.

Hi! How are you, reader? How am I, you ask? Well...I don't know. Good...I guess?

I say "I guess," because this whole period of life, while not fraught with any tangible chaos, is an emotional chaos of a major s t r e t c h i n g time. Like, a bend-over-backward crazy-yoga-pose-level stretching time. Parenting - nay, life - is not for the faint of heart, and so often my heart wants to indulge faintness. I am brought back to my feet by the Lord, my supportive husband, and the people at church who are like family to me, but the perpetuity of the process is way tiring. 

I'm just a little dramatic and lugubrious right now because something just hit me: I'm halfway across the country from one of my best friends, and now my other best friend, who currently lives right across the street from me, is moving halfway across the country in three weeks. My immediate family is in the same dreaded state to which this friend is moving; my beloved in-laws are even further away than that. So as the reality of this friend's move hits, I find myself feeling rather alone. 

I'm not good at saying goodbye. It takes me - it takes everyone? - a long time to form deep relationships in which I fully trust the other person involved. Somewhere in adolescence, I taught myself that most people can be trusted up to a certain point, but after that point, no one can be trusted. To build a friendship in which I can bare my soul to the other person without fear of some selfish motive prompting negative repercussions...that is a ruby-rare, pearl-priceless thing.

Kids are really good at making friends! Sometimes they even dress to match!

I have much growing to do in the area of trust - I know I do. Being easily endeared to people in general is not the same thing as trusting them. So if you think of me, pray for me during this time, and pray for my friend and her family in the midst of this move. And if you're a friend of mine, please be patient with me as I learn to trust you more. The good thing about having a few people I fully, genuinely trust is that I know I am capable of fully and genuinely trusting without the world imploding. So, as I grow in godliness and maturity by the work of the Holy Spirit, I will hopefully risk deeper hurt in order to gain a chance for deeper fellowship, deeper joy, and deeper love. Until then, do bear with me.

What about you? What are some things that help you cope with missing loved ones? Shoot me a comment, message or email and give a girl some tips.

Until next time, dear reader.