Saturday, September 29, 2012


My daughter is sixteen. With this rite of passage comes so much worry for me that sometimes I forget to breathe. Like yesterday. She had plans. Plans that didn't include me or her dad. Plans that included friends and her car and night and interstate driving.



I struggled with worry before she turned sixteen. I'm a worrier. Not sure why, but I just am, so any little thing can set my mind into a frenzy. Whether it's questioning something I said or something I did or didn't do. Whether it's worrying about the past or the future or today. Give me anything to worry about, even a wisp of a worry, and I will claim it.

So I'm having to learn how to live in a home that includes a sixteen-year-old daughter with keys and car. I'm having to learn how to give her space to grow up and to be independent. I'm having to trust that she will find her way to her friend's house, in the dark, and that she will be back here the next day. Safe and sound.

I do turn things over to God. Often. Sometimes I pull the worry back from him and stew in it for a little while. But then I send it back to him on angels' wings. When I do this. When I send my worries to God and place them in His hands, I relax. My mind is free from worry. I find peace. I breathe.

And I continue to trust Him with her precious life and tell myself that everything will be okay. I have to, so I can breathe.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Telephoto Tuesday: They Can't Stand Still

these girls! Even here, in this picture, they're a bit blurry. These are some of the girls on my daughter's volleyball team. They've bonded so much this year. They've won some, and lost some, but overall have gotten stronger with each match.

Confession: A student took this photograph. I wish that I had. I'm thinking about getting the girls to let me take some fun photos of them. Hopefully, they will.

Saturday, September 22, 2012


It's the weekend, again. Thankfully. I am so tired by the time Saturday rolls around that I feel like a limp dishcloth just laying around the house. There's school work to do, clothes to wash, and a house to take care of, but instead I sit here on the computer, saying hello, loading photos from my phone onto my computer, and wishing I had more energy.

I'm still searching for balance in my life. I need to exerise, to breathe fresh air, to enjoy the beautiful world around me, but I spend way too much time on work. I often wonder how other teachers do it. So if you teach, please share your secrets. A ten-hour work day isn't enough time for me to get everything done. And that, in itself, is a bit ridiculous I think.

Last weekend I tried to capture hummingbirds in flight but ended up with these instead. I was using my Canon but had a difficult time focusing on the bird in flight. I would focus on the bird feeder, instead, thinking that would be close enough, but the hummingbird was always out of focus. I may try again tomorrow.

It took a while for them to feel safe with me around. I pulled a chair up pretty close to the feeder and waited. They would flit past so fast, I could hear the beating of their wings easier than I could see them.

Happy Weekend!

Sunday, September 16, 2012


years they've been married. This month. And they are as sweet as ever.

Yes, they both are University of Alabama football fans.
Hence the crimson t-shirts with the big A and the big football.

and gardeners.

And wonderful parents to three children.
And to me, their daughter-in-law.

But to my daughter, they are Mano and PopPop.
The names she gave them when she was a tiny thing.
And they stuck.

Happy 67th Anniversary to the most precious couple I know!


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Right Around the Corner

and not too far away from my house is this river. I steal glances to my left and right every time I cross over it. Sometimes, like today, I have to stop, park, and walk back to the bridge to really see the river the way I want to. To see the way the clouds seem to hang, suspended, in the air above it, like they too don't want to leave. To see the way the trees are reflected in the water. To see the ripples from the current as it flows downstream. To imagine what it would be like to take a picnic down to the water's edge... right over there in that clearing.

When I looked down into the water I saw ten turtles sunning themselves. Then, one by one, they splashed into the water. I saw them swimming and coming up for air. I wondered if they had made plans before they jumped in. Were they planning to meet again on the other side of the bridge to sun on those rocks for a while? Or was it time to go home?

It's moments like these that stop me in my tracks and make me appreciate this world. To appreciate the everyday beauty that simply waits to be noticed. And beauty is everywhere. In the city where a lone flower may break free from the cement and stretch toward the sun. And here, in my little corner of the world, where sun-dappled rivers beckon me to stop and see.

Saturday, September 8, 2012



Getting ready to jump many, many years ago.
In my youth.


I've joined Alyce at At Home With Books for Saturday Snapshot.
If you'd like to see more photographs or link up your own, click here.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

To be a bird...

I keep finding myself
looking up at the sky.
And remembering...

That I used to fly in my younger days.
Beginning first by jumping off the roof of our house
when I was a little girl.
This an attempt to convince my parents
that I was too much of a tom-boy
and needed to take dance lessons
so I would act more like a dainty girl.

As a teenager, I longed to fly.
Knowing then that jumping off the roof
wasn't going to get me very far,
I began calling the airport
and asking about flying lessons.

Always too much money involved.

So I waited.

But would call every year, probably close to my birthday.
Always being told how much it would cost
and always realizing that I might never have
that kind of money.

Finally, one year, after hearing the same story,
I asked about skydiving.
It was cheaper.
So I did. Skydive.
Nearly 500 times.

And that was flying.
My body zipping through the air
at break-neck speeds.
Turning flips and linking up
with others to create kaleidoscope designs in the air.

One of my earliest jumps, replete with round chute and Adidas high tops!

I also kept asking about flying... airplanes.
And found out that I could work for flying time.
So I did. Work and Fly. Airplanes.

I gave it up when I had my daughter.
Too much time required to
satisfy my thrill of flight.

On pretty days I still look up at the sky
and think about those times
when my body tumbled
through the air.

In an
Free falling.

I've linked up with Heather at the Extraordinary Ordinary to Just Write.
You can read her latest Just Write post here and find out more about Just Write by clicking here.

Monday, September 3, 2012

I Can't Complain ...

about football season. You see, I knew way back when that I was marrying a die-hard college football fan. Namely, a die-hard University of Alabama football fan. In fact, he chose a football weekend to propose -- at an Alabama game, no less, with his parents in tow as they celebrated their anniversary. By saying "yes" at the game, he pretty much assured himself that I couldn't complain about football season. It just is what it is, so to speak.

Before our daughter was born, I went to all of the games with him. I started off this new interest by watching the TV crews and commentators on the sidelines until finally I picked out one of the players and started following his movements on the field. Stacy Harrison. #1. Because of his enthusiasm, I became more enthusiastic. Enthusiastic enough to even learn their fight song and sing it with gleeful gusto.

I rarely went to games when our daughter was young, but she still has grown up to love the Crimson Tide and these fall football Saturdays. She and I usually travel to Homecoming with him and every now and then we'll take off with him on other football excursions. Like this past weekend when we watched the Crimson Tide face off against Michigan in the Dallas Cowboys Stadium. (That jumbotron is HUGE by the way!)

We just happened to be staying at the same hotel as the football team, so my daughter was spotting players left and right. We even spotted this guy, Gene Stallings, who happens to be one of Alabama's greatest coaches of all times.

This will probably be my only tribute to the University of Alabama this fall. But I thought it was only proper to kind of bid my husband a friendly adieu. His mother understands. She has a pillow in her house that reads, "Pardon Me, This Marriage is Interrupted by Football Season."

Roll Tide!