Saturday, August 11, 2012


Last night, I found myself in just an angry, grumpy place. A week's worth of bad news, bad luck and bad timing basically caught up with me. I kept trying to remind myself that none of what was going on around me was my turmoil, and yet, when you live life with others...sooner rather than later, the things that affect them are going to affect you too. On the heels of a friend having her 12 year old threaten suicide, another friend losing a job, and the news that a youth worker has been charged with luring kids online...I find myself at a loss to calm the internal anger that roils within me.
I may have been asking a bit more of Tetley tea when I finally stopped pacing the floor and poured myself some tea called "Clarity", grabbed a favourite book and headed out to the front porch to just sit and reflect on good things. I listened to my kids running up and down the street in the dark playing "Mission Impossible" with the neighbours and I was mindful that we live on a street that "feels" safe and yet, I can't take for granted that it is. What I am thankful for is the homes on the street that we know are safe places for our kids to run in and out of and that there are adults there that watch out for our kids. It's not foolproof but what is in this world?

I know that there is a verse in the Bible that says we should focus on whatever is pure, and noble and right. To be honest, last night, I couldn't focus on it. I couldn't put together even a short list of things that I could consider pure or noble or right. I have been reading this great little book on life and love called "Love Does." Really, it's a great book simply because the author is a friend of a friend and everything I hear of him? It's that he lives as he speaks. This is the story of how he lives...with love in action. So, that was my back up plan last night. If I can't think of pure or noble things, I'll read about someone who can. And does. Isn't that what we all want? To be someone whose actions back up their beliefs? Why is this so difficult?

I went to bed feeling a little better than I had all day and yet, I woke at around 2 am to lightning silently flashing behind the curtains. I remembered that I had left my lanterns and book out on the front porch so I threw on a sweater and went out to rescue them in case rain was coming with the lightning. I sat out on my rocker for a while, in the middle of the night, as the wind blew in and the lightning flashed and I wondered where the thunder was. Leading up to the storm, for about half an hour, there was just lightning and sound, no rain. It was like anyone with their eyes closed or their curtains drawn, wouldn't have known that a storm was approaching until it was right upon them.

I sat out until the first rumbles of thunder made their way onto the horizon and large drops of rain began to blow in ahead of the storm. I could see a large, looming wall of cloud and rain when the lightning flashed. It was coming quickly so Charlie and I made our way back into the house to watch it from inside.  In the darkness of our street, one other neighbour, a young guy who lives behind us, was also out on his porch watching the storm approach. From his back porch, he was sheltered from the first approaching drops of rain and I knew that in a minute, it would come over our house and hit his yard full force. I watched from the darkness of our kitchen as the rain made it's way through our backyard and towards him. I watched him scramble as the first drops hit him, to grab his papers, his drink, push in his chair and head into his house. 

Sometimes these things just sneak up on us. Sometimes they just blow by.
I love a good storm only because it clears the air and refreshes things...but I fear them too. I fear the damage in their wake. I fear the power they have to render us completely helpless.
I hope that the storms that are battering those around me will have the same benefits, and that the damage in the meantime is minimal.  If there was choice of teas last night, I would have taken "Denial" or "Blissful Ignorance" but unfortunately, neither of those have been on the menu.
Maybe the next one will be called "wisdom".

I was hopeful this would live up to its name....

All we can do, is "do". Love with actions and in truth.

One tiny corner of the world last night where there was
a sense of peace, even as the storm raged around us.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

All Over the Map

This morning, I was simply making coffee, like I do each day. I'm lucky in that each morning, I enjoy it out on our patio in the sun.  Summer is beautiful in Saskatchewan and it's nice to be home. Honestly though, once the travel bug hits, it hits hard. I think there's something about seeing and experiencing other cultures that makes you feel alive. I know that our time in Africa felt like living. Minute by
Of all the places we talk about visiting "one day"...I know that they all pale in comparison to my desire to be back in Zambia and Zimbabwe with our friends there. This morning though? I was all over the map...and hadn't even finished my coffee yet.

Coffee from my friend, Sylvie, in Rwanda

A favorite mug reminds me of one of my favourite countries

One of Jason's ambitions...Harley Davidson mechanic school in Phoenix

Amazing beauty all over the world that beckons.