Tuesday, June 10, 2014


This morning daylight woke me far before I had wanted it to. I think my next house will need better room-darkening window treatments for early summer hours. I had wanted to sleep in. As I lay there in bed, I was trying to get a handle on my feelings, my mood for the start of this day. It was a surprisingly blank slate.

The decision to do something fun with the kids today settled in my mind. I wasn’t feeling sad or happy and I didn’t want to swing towards the former. I got up and began to make tea and get ready to read my Beth Moore devotional when my sister called.

Alisha lives in Florida, as does my other sister, Bethany. Both of them aren’t really phone people, which is a shame. My conversations with them are delightful. I crave conversation over text. They do make an effort sometimes in their busy schedules to chat with me while they sew for their thriving Etsy business, Mahalo, or care for their families.

Bethany, me, Alisha - August 2008, Badlands Nt'l Park

We haven’t always been close. Our friendship has evolved through the joys and trials of sharing our lives as married women and moms. Our deepest connections were made through the incredible journey they took with me when my youngest daughter, Lucy, had open-heart surgery at just five days old. My sisters are amazing in a crisis. They are calming and faith-filled. They are irreverent and full of laughter. I came to fully appreciate the incredible women they are during Lucy’s amazing journey.

Last night I got to chat with Bethany. We shared some laughs and talked about her bustling family of seven. Soon our talk grew serious as she shared with me her heart for her new job as children’s minister at her church. She’s done this job before. She has a passion to see children understand deep spiritual truths in fun and interactive ways. She has a gift for teaching and she was sharing with me some of the challenges she faces at this new church.  I was thrilled to be able to cheer her on. She can do this. God has gifted her to do this! She will be amazing.

Today Alisha helped fill the blank slate of my emotional day with stories. Oh she tells good stories. She always has a spin on some errand or project she’s been doing that makes me laugh.

Alisha sometimes reminds me of a woman in the wrong decade. She’s part Audrey Hepburn and part Rosie the Riveter. You would not be surprised to find her in a long skirt riding a vintage bike with a basket filled with flowers and French bread. But you also would not be surprised to find her reroofing her house or retiling a bathroom.

Today, when I needed a course set for my day, she was a good navigator. We laughed about family inside jokes. I listened to her latest excursion to Home Depot where her winning smile and cute figure somehow seem to get her lots of help. These poor male employees have no idea she does 90% of the Home Depot shopping for her family. She’s not helpless. She shared with me the amazing recent encounter she and Bethany had paddle boarding when a real, honest-to-goodness manatee swam right up to them and surfaced!

In the background I could hear her ever-growing kids bustling about, getting ready to start a big project. She has one at home from her first year in college and this fall will have two in high-school. My nephew, Joshua, sent Aunt Jenn-jenn a hug across the phone lines. His voice is no longer that of a little boy. Her daughter Anna was getting ready for work. Her youngest, Amanda, was prepping materials bought on that Home Depot trip for a secret project she can’t wait to reveal on Facebook herself. I’ll not tell. But I can’t wait to see the pictures when she’s done.
I love the women my sisters are—strong and fun and serving Jesus in the day-to-day of their lives. I cherish our conversations and our visits. And I’m thankful that today, God sent me a delightful conversation with Alisha, unhurried and filled with laughter. Now to enjoy some banana bread my girls made for the first time all by themselves and continue with this delightful day.

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