The peace rose planted by my front door has one bloom and sixteen buds. SIXTEEN! I can’t quite believe it! I chose this rose bush the first spring we lived here, way back in 2002, because the house I grew up in had a peace rose planted there. At my childhood home there were roses in an array of colors planted to the left of the front walk: red, coral, white, yellow, even a blue rose (really lavender), and peace. It was this peace rose, and its amazing beauty that comes in varying shades of yellow with white edges and a hint of pink blush, that was the only rose my dad commented on every time it bloomed.

“To shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.”
—Luke 1:79

Before walking Blue this morning, I read this passage of scripture along with a devotion dated July 7. I loved the whole message, but my favorite part was the reference to a “path of peace.” Upon our return home, the dog and me, I photographed the peace rose bush planted to the left of the front walk at the house where I’m the mom. Then I stepped upon the butterfly adorned welcome mat that my sister insisted upon and walked through the front door into home. I’m always thankful for found moments of quiet, calm and peace, since with two growing up fast boys there are many times that noise, chaos and commotion reign. I love those zany times too. I do!

July 9, 2013

my morning playlist

I was standing in the kitchen, listening to Miranda Lambert’s, “The House That Built Me” when my phone rang. It was my dad. Just checking on me with LOVE. After we said goodbye the song resumed playing. That was a few songs ago. Breakfast is next.

June 28, 2013

girl power

I mowed the yard this morning.
I wanted to try out the mower after my dad, nephew and oldest son tricked it out.
Blades sharpened.
Oil changed.
Something with the spark plug for an easy one pull start.
I texted my friend Kim at 12:14pm, “Mowed. Check.”
She texted back, “Good job…and even in this heat.”
I replied, “I’m not a shrinking violet. I’m a crazy daisy. ;-)”
She sent back a, “LOL.”
I’m smiling now, at the satisfaction of a job well done.
Best of all, the day is still young.

June 21, 2013

I’m packing away
a comforter today
the one my Grandma made
to top my childhood twin bed
twas my winter comforter
made of heavy fabric
for extra warmth
with a tangible weight to it
you know
when you’re nestled underneath
you can feel it
even as you sleep
Grandma and Grandpa’s love
always with you
they worked as a tag team
in nearly everything
my sister’s bed
sported a matching comforter
Grandma made two
nearly the same
a lot like my sister and I
for years I’ve said
(a bit tongue in cheek)
“She is the blonde version
and I’m the brunette.”
but beyond our similar look
face shape, smiles bright,
dimpled chin from our dad
we’re more alike than not
on the inside
I’m packing away
a comforter today
thankful
for the warmth, comfort and strength
this decades old blanket
made with Thompson Love
gave me
through the fall, winter and spring
now past

June 17, 2013

This is where I come from.
Sparkly hearts that say, “LOVE” on my parents front door.
They will celebrate 45 years of marriage on February 17, 2013.
Not every year was easy.
The hard ones thankfully few.
Mom told me once, “You don’t divide the love, you multiply it.”
Love Math is her Greatest Gift.
My dad loves GREAT BIG too.
I am theirs.
Forever and always.
This is where I come from.
From my parents abiding love.

February 2, 2013

I walked past this hammock for sale at the store today and flashed back to my childhood summers. On the most special of days my dad would tie the big white hammock between two skinny walnut trees. We’d take turns climbing in to sway gently from side to side. How I wanted to buy a hammock today to recapture the peace and ease of those long ago summer days. I resisted though. No where to store it. No good place in the yard to serenely sway either. Street sounds. Lawnmowers. Basketballs hitting pavement in pre shot dribbling. Dogs barking (not just mine). I’ve landed a hundred miles from the deep, sloped, tree filled backyard at the end of a dead end street behind the little yellow house that I called Home for my first twenty one years. I grew up in a town of 20,000 surrounded by factories, farmland, and highways to anywhere but here. Now I think to myself, “Those were the days.” These were my fleeting thoughts this morning, as I pushed my shopping cart past the hammocks toward the aisles that held stuff actually on my list. The only other thing I wondered was whether my parents, my dad specifically, would like a hammock once again to enjoy on summer afternoons from his screened in porch that overlooks the Mississippi River. You can be sure I’m going to ask him and hope the answer is, “Yes.” My ulterior motives are quite transparent…I want a turn too. ~ Janean

5:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 10, 2012, added two quarts of oil to my wonderful old gal, Lola the Corolla. There is now more than the merest smidge of oil on the end of the dipstick. Last Friday afternoon, as I drove around town with my sons, my empty fuel light AND my oil light were coming on as a WARNING. Thankfully the fuel fill up was in a nick of time and we didn’t run all the way out of gas. Bought oil at the grocery store last night. I’m sure I paid too much, but it was my last chance to see to it for a few days time and it needed to be done. I’m so glad my dad saw fit to teach me how to check and add oil to my car. I remembered to use a funnel this time, so the garage floor doesn’t have an oil puddle. He taught me other cool stuff too like how to bait a hook, cast a line, shoot a gun, gas weld, fry an egg, cook a burger, sew a button on and drive. The two lessons that were obvious at the time, and not veiled in conversation, are:
1. Don’t speed in small towns.
2. Seek the good and shun the bad.
The second was uttered, as we were left the house I grew up in, on the way to college for my freshman year. That was when his dad shared it with him too. My grandpa heard it from his uncle when he left home to serve in WWII. My children have heard it already. More than once. I’m not waiting until they are eighteen to pass it on. They need now. We all do. All this to say, Dads are special. Oil Pouring Writing About Random Stuff Moms are too, even if we do have to say so ourselves. It’s 5:55 a.m. now. Time to make lunches, pack snacks for testing and write a schedule for today because it’s Mom’s Day Off. Granted, I have to go to the hospital to get one. You see, I’m running on empty and need some TLC, just like my old Corolla. I’ll be OK. Just need to be flat and still after the procedure so I’m off work until tomorrow morning when Blue says, “Woof”, or I wake up on my own. Whichever comes first.