This One Is For You, Mom. With Love.

In recent months I’ve written more about my dad as we (and I) navigate the waters of grief and loss. Which makes sense, but might give you the sense that he’s more important to us than our mom.

You know I was on the launch team for the Gutsy Girls: Strong Chrisitan Women Who Impacted the World. When the author asked if any of us on the launch team wanted to write about a person we know who is gutsy, my mom instantly came to mind–you’ll see why in the post.

What I didn’t know, is Amy (the author) selected the piece about my mom to be the lead off piece in the series!

How appropriate.

Mom, the line of people who love and admire you is long, far longer than you realize. But as is befitting to your values, the front of the line is crowded with your family. It has been our rare privilege in the months, that are moving into years, since Dad died to walk with you and continue to learn from you. We love you.

This picture was taken on Sunday — Mom with her youngest granddaughter.


Will you please follow me to Amy Sullivan’s site? Our mom is worth a click :).

I love you. And I know Elizabeth, Laura, Del, Sue, and the girls are right there with me on that sentiment. You are a gutsy girl.

Reminders from Your True Culture {Eden!}

Two years ago I blogged through the month of October. It is by far, my favorite series. As I read over the list, a place deep within me exhales.


Long-time readers know, I am taken with “the language of Eden” and how it was supposed to flow out of us; instead we speak the language of Eden Lost.

For just a moment, can you picture spending a day in Eden prior to the fall? A land without brokenness, sickness, debt, hunger, stubbed toes, escaped curse words, rush hour traffic frustrations. Instead, a land of generosity and freedom and contentment. As foreign as that may be right now, a part of us whispers, yes, yes, yes. Now that sounds like where I want to live. Who I want to be. How I want to interact.

I know that I need reminders from Eden and I bet you do too.

You might be in a very un-Eden-like place right now. Come in, you are welcome here. This isn’t meant to be a place for just the happy, clappy (though if that’s you, you’re welcome too!). I am so used to Eden Lost (and how could I not be, tis my home), these reminders are meant to be just that … reminders. And encouragements. And maybe challenges. But I’ll leave that last one up to you and the Holy Spirit. This isn’t meant to be a backhanded scolding. No, we get enough of those.

If you want more of the back story on how my interest in Eden was sparked, you can read about the view from the 17th floor and a sign at my gym.

(1) This is day one. Eden is a place of:

(2)  LOVE






(8)  TRUTH





(13)  UNITY






(19)  FAITH


(21)  JOY




(25)  HOPE




(29) PEACE



Follow up posts: Building a bench {for a conversation}

What can a photo add to a post?

An invitation to slow down and remember

A picture of God’s heart

Exhale, oh my soul. And breath.

Which reminder did you need today?

When the Shoe Is On the Other Foot {Will You Advocate For Men?}

Today I find myself in a surprising position. Normally I’m frustrated with the lack of support and advocating for women in ministry. Am I willing to stand up and support and advocate for men when resources for them may be lacking? Today I’m over at A Life Overseas with my monthly contribution. One of the […]

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3 {More} Headlines You Might Have Missed


The headlines of late are sobering and saddening. And though certainly worthy of being given space and time and attention and prayers, they are not the only news. I repeat. THEY ARE NOT THE ONLY NEWS. I don’t want to be the kind of person who lives in denial of the pain and suffering around […]

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An Update On My Book {Spontaneous Applause Appreciated, wink}

Gutsy Girl

I finished at 9:45 p.m. Saturday evening and sat staring at my computer. Is it really done?! After starting “the book” over four years ago, setting it aside–thinking it wasn’t going to be puslished–for 18 months, and having it edited and reworked three times, the writing and editing is done. Finished. I really can’t believe […]

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How often do you interact with your rivals?


I became enamored with the (U.S.) Civil War and Abraham Lincoln in 10th grade when I was required to read The Killer Angels  by Michael Shaara (author, not my teacher). In case you’re not familiar with it, it recounts the Battle of Gettysburg and since then I’ve probably read another ten books or so related to Lincoln or the […]

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Pebbles of Remembrance

Pebble of remebrance

I was sitting outside drinking my morning tea when I noticed a shift had occured. This was not a huge aha moment. This was a quiet tuning in to how I felt about an upcoming event and it felt … different. The shift was in a positive direction and nobody but me would notice. On the […]

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4 Areas You Are Disconnected and God’s Response

Where are you

The theme at Velvet Ashes this week is “Connect” and we’ve launched our fall Connection Groups — which is like a small group for cross-cultural workers. This post first appeared on Velvet Ashes, but it’s one we all need. *****   You have been there. I know this without us ever discussing it. The maddening […]

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3 Reasons You Need to Read this Chinese Food Memoir

3 reasons food matters

I just finished Shark’s Fin and Sichuan Pepper: A Sweet-sour Memoir of Eating in China by Fuchsia Dunlop. It came out in 2008, so I may be late to the party, but if you’re like me and hadn’t heard of it, I recommend it. Dunlop first came to China in the early 90s and then moved to […]

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The blurry line between fiction and reality

A recent article reminded me of a piece of fiction I wrote for a writing course as I tried to visualize the growing problem of bride stealing in China. Not ‘Leftover Women’ but ‘Leftover Men’ Are China’s Real Problem said, “Leftover women are no cause for concern – it is the ‘leftover men’ that are China’s real […]

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