Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Spring Baby

Twenty Six years ago at precisely 11:26 PM, I made my way into this world. I'm just barely an April baby, and so happy I made it. April is such a lovely birthday month, and one which I share with 3 cousins, 2 aunts, and countless friends. 

Birthdays have always been a big deal in my family and I have so many sweet memories, thanks mostly to my mom who worked so hard to make us feel so loved on our day.

When I think about my birthday, though, there is one in particular that comes to mind, and always encompasses that birthday feeling. My 6th birthday.

That day was a Friday and I was going to spend the weekend with my grandmother for my birthday. I chose to wear my favorite dress. A blue flowered number with frills, bows, and layers of polka dotted ruffles peaking through. The day was warm and bright, and we had recess outside. My little limbs could barely still themselves with the excitement of my special day! 

I imagine that night at my grandma's we had salmon pie, one of my childhood favorites. We talked like grown ups do and I got to take out my grandma's porcelain doll she's had since childhood. Us grand kids had a room upstairs, but the heater made scary noises and  I always begged to sleep with grandma in her bed, instead. Safe with her beside me, I didn't wake until the morning, pulled from sleep by the loud insistent chirping of a spring bird. 

It is that moment I think of every April 30th, when I wake and remember it's my birthday. I remember that chatter of cheerful birds returned after a winter away, as loud and bossy as the sun streaming through the windows. I remember the thrill of a sleepover and waking snuggled next to my grandmother and a day filled with whatever adventures we had planned. It is a morning of sunny spring promise and the best kind of birthday feeling!

Sunday, April 28, 2013


Boston has been in the national news lately for the sad events surrounding the marathon. I have been on the emotional roller coaster with everyone and shaken by the reminder that we are not invincible, but I have never been in more in love with my city.

I think it is a small mercy that these horrific days occurred just as Spring was throwing off the last cold hand of Winter. She, a whirlwind of energy, life, and fragrant blooms waiting to grace our scarred streets with her beauty.

These last weekends, for me, have been filled with visits from family, sweet time with dear friends, picnics in the park, and even a little tan! I've also apparently eaten an inordinate amount of pizza during these adventures based on the above photos. . . 

A trip to the country and my old home in western Massachusetts this weekend (ahem, complete with some Antonio's pizza) left me feeling refreshed and ready for the week. As we drove along the rural roads, windows down and hands and faces in the clean air, I wondered how anything could be better than the awakening of Spring. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

A Great Day

"Make it a great day or not. The choice is yours."

Every day, from the first day of 6th grade all the way through our last day in 8th grade, my middle school classmates and I would hear those words coming from the morning announcer as we languished in home room. We would snort, roll our eyes, snap our gum and recite it silently along with her.  

"We knowwww" someone would inevitable moan, leaning back hard in their chair, pen sweeping in meaningless doodles across a notebook.

It was a joke. Nothing our adolescent minds could capture with any sincerity.

But, this morning, as I awoke with a tension headache already building, thinking of another week at my job filled with too much work and no help, that phrase popped into my head. 

As a child, I thought our teachers were silly and irrelevant. I thought they couldn't come up with anything better to say. But I think what they were saying is something very important, that I forget too often. We can spend a lot of time each day blaming other people for why our lives aren't going the way we want, but that won't change a thing. Life is hard and always changing and never the way we picture it. I think what our morning announcer was telling us was to take responsibility for ourselves. We don’t get to choose the world we live in, but we do get to choose the way we react to it. We choose the lens through which we will view our day, and we must make that choice every, single day.

With that command echoing in my head, I didn't linger in bed despite my anxiety about the day. Instead I got up and spent time reading my Bible and storing up peace for a long day. I rejoiced in an open seat on the T for my 45 minute ride in. I counted bursting Spring buds and red-breasted robins as I walked in the Public Gardens during my lunch hour.

My circumstances didn't change, but my perspective did.  Despite the piles of work, the lack of support and the potential to be a no good, horrible, very bad day. . .today was a great day because I decided to make it one.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

He is Risen!

What a busy (and fun) weekend this was! Easter weekend is one of my favorites of the Spring. We get to celebrate our risen savior who died so that we may live. And this year, Easter also happened to fall just 3 days after my younger sister turned 21. There was much joy in getting to celebrate both these special moments with my dear family and friends.

On Saturday, I joined some of my family for a combo birthday/Easter brunch, and on Sunday spent the day worshiping in church and then having friends over for an Easter Feast! I roasted a chicken and whipped up mimosas while everyone pitched in and brought delicious side dishes. It was a beautiful weekend, and I'm so thankful for God's provision of everyone I spent time with this weekend. 

Oh, and I also had the opportunity to make an Easter themed cake for dessert on Sunday. My favorite!