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  • The Truth You’ve Got To Know About After Easter

    On Monday, April 21 st, 2014

    That first call was from the hospital. Right about the cracking dawn on Resurrection Sunday, her whispering on the other end of the line. Two weeks so far. Not that we all aren’t counting or anything. Who knows how many more weeks my sister has in front of her, how many more clattering hospital trays of soggy toast and watery jello and runny eggs? Takes about 40 weeks to unfu...

  • The Best Gift for the Overwhelmed:
    Sometimes You Need Joy-in-a-Box

    On Monday, April 07 th, 2014

    A bird flew straight into the kitchen last night. Perched right on the top of that weather van on the mantle. And I looked up from the sink and thought it was you right there, your heart pounding right there out of your chest. It’s hard to be overwhelmed. What if we could do that — hand each other Joy-in-a-Box? That one overwhelmed swallow flew in a wind...

  • What We’ve Got to Tell Kids About Living Extraordinary

    On Monday, March 31 st, 2014

    So yeah, you won’t likely find it making the headlines of People Magazine. But that shouldn’t stop real people from really knowing. Marjorie Knight told me when I was nine. She turned to me while we were hulling a heap of strawberries over her sink, and her white hair caught all this afternoon light and her gravelly voice rolled over those words like smoothened stones: R...

  • One Simple Secret to Effective Time Management This Week

    On Monday, March 24 th, 2014

    When I turn down Creamery Road, I pass, yeah, surprising —  the old creamery. Pass the the creamery that’s now abandoned, the window eyes all punched out. How did they all look, those silvery pails of milk that once lined up by the door, their tins lid hats pulled on tight, so not one white drop spilled. But isn’t as much milk lost through a pinhole here, a p...

  • When You’re Tired of Kids Complaining: 15 Ways to Happier, Grateful Kids

    On Monday, March 17 th, 2014

    How long do I really have to figure it out? How long do I have to figure out how to live full of joy? So my husband might find himself married to a woman he loves being with. A woman who knows how to laugh at the days to come? So our children have these memories of a mama who smiles easy, listens long, makes jokes and praise and all these good days out of crazy messes. So the...

  • how to learn the language of happiness

    On Friday, March 14 th, 2014

    There’s sun on the snow and in the morning porridge bowls. The boys argue loud, who knows about what — sometimes we don’t understand each other. Sometimes  we’re speaking the same language but we aren’t. My father always says he’d never be able to talk if someone tied his hands. I don’t know about that. I just start cl...

  • What To Do To Get Your Rhythm Back

    On Monday, March 10 th, 2014

    There wasn’t a morning that she didn’t flick off her bedroom light and find it right there on the edge of the table outside their bedroom door. One round vitamin C that he’d leave out for her, before he went to the barn and his udder-dripping sows. Like he thought she could just take it and keep the day from being infected with grief. Like there was a way to i...

  • The Real Root of Brokenness that We Forget to Talk About [or When You Want to Turn Your Life Around]

    On Monday, March 03 rd, 2014

    It’s after I cut the squash right open. The two halves split and quartered there on the cutting board. After the paint brushes are washed out, after the pawns of chess game are all returned to their squares, after the potatoes are baked and served, the dinner plates are pushed back empty. The Farmer splits the Word right open then and that’s when I’m ...

  • Don’t Read This. But READ THIS. Because WHO WOULD HAVE BELIEVED THIS would happen?

    On Thursday, February 20 th, 2014

    So there’s this 19-year-old cutter who laid down the blade in her hand and brandished a pen. And Mrs. Stoope, this 78-year-old Michigan grandma who has seven sons, her hair wrapped up in a white bun and has this Bic blue list she’s scrawled in her own hand, numbered now up over 10,000 graces. She always keeps a copy of the book on hand too, Mrs. Stoope who’s handed out ov...

  • [After the SuperBowl]
    Why It’s Good to Think About Losing This Week (Because This is How You Win)

    On Monday, February 03 rd, 2014

    In the middle of a stiff winter wind, she asks to go to the beach. That’s where she says she wants to celebrate the turning of her calendar year. To stand on the frozen snow and turn her face directly into whatever is coming this way. We’re the only ones there. Nothing can mean nothing, and everything means something. Yes — everything. We walk the long boardwalk, o...

  • How to Live When You Only Have So Much Time Left [Pt. 1]

    On Monday, January 27 th, 2014

    Yeah, who knows how long we’ve got? Somebody answer us that. Somebody get up on your tipsy soapbox and wring just that out of a grimy, holy world. Flip over your neat little nursing chart and scan the scans of our broken hearts that somehow just keep on beating brave and you run your finger along all the fracture lines and just tell us that — how long have we got. ...

  • When You’re Desperate for More Than Barely Surviving Your Life

    On Monday, January 20 th, 2014

    On Saturday night when the snow falls large, like feathers from heaven’s tick, I kneel in the muck of the barn and milk a sow. Rub her udder, warm and swollen right heavy round, nudge at the vessel fullness of her, and wait for her drip. Wait for the sticky whiteness of her dripping sweet, the snow piling without a sound on the roof. When I’m bent over her udder wi...

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