Thursday, June 20, 2019

Grace at Home No. 342


Hello, friends, and welcome to this week's Grace at Home party.

I've been AWOL a lot lately, and this past weekend was the reason. I haven't processed everything yet, but here's a summary in one photo:


That's my son Will and my new daughter, Christiana, at the Naval Memorial Chapel in Pensacola, Florida.

Y'all. Our lives will never be the same, and I'm so glad!

I'll try to write about everything soon. Right now we're still weary from travel and celebration, but now we have a lifetime to reflect upon this wonderful event.

So what have you been up to? I know there are all kinds of ways you're making your homes places of grace, and I want to hear about them!

I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  Note that if you link a post here, you are giving me permission to share your post, including a photo.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter


Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Turn, turn, turn


When I was a tiny girl, a group called The Byrds recorded a song written by folk artist Pete Seeger. It was called "Turn! Turn! Turn!" Maybe you've heard it:

To everything
Turn! Turn! Turn!
There is a season
Turn! Turn! Turn!
And a time to every purpose
Under heaven.


You may recognize those words from the third chapter of Ecclesiastes, one of the Bible's books of wisdom. The Byrds' popular song echoed the words of the King James Version:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;

 a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

No one would argue with the wisdom of those words. The tricky part is remembering them, don't you think?


I've written before about how quickly time passes. In fact, I firmly believe that a better motto for parents than Carpe Diem is Tempus Fugit. Not every day is worth seizing; some we merely survive. But wow, does time fly.

Here's one of the first pictures ever taken of me and my oldest son, Will:



Just three weeks after this photo was taken, I took baby Will to visit my mother. Very vividly now does a scene come back to me. We took Will for a walk in his stroller, and as we walked, my mom told me that I should savor the moments of his babyhood. "Turn around," she said, "and he'll be leaving." Then she quoted one of those sweet Kingston Trio songs she always loved:

Where are you going, my little one, little one?
Where are going, my baby, my own?
Turn around, and you're two
Turn around, and you're four
Turn around, you're a young girl
Going out of the door.

At that point I still had the swollen tummy of a new mother, and I could hardly imagine fitting back into my skinny jeans, much less having that little baby big enough to leave. So I did a pirouette on the sidewalk and giggled at my mother. She just gave me one of those wise smiles and said, "Wait and see."

My mom left this earth nearly 20 years ago, but I've thought of her words often through the years. She was right.

I turned once, and he was 10 years old.



I turned again, and he graduated from college.



I turned once more, and he was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Navy.



One more time, and he began training to be an aviator.


There will be more photos of Will made this week, but they won't feature my son with his mom. They'll be pictures of him with this beautiful woman:


On June 15, this boy of mine—no longer a boy now—will walk down the aisle in Pensacola, Florida, and vow to love, honor, and cherish Christiana as long as they both shall live.

Turn, turn, turn. Really and truly, tempus fugit: time flies.

Sometimes people ask me for parenting advice, and there's one piece I'll give. You know that phone you're holding? Don't hold it so much, except for one thing. Use it to take pictures. 

Capture the moments, for soon—very soon—they'll be memories.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Grace at Home No. 341


Welcome, friends! I'm glad you're here for our weekly Grace at Home party, where we celebrate all the ways we make our homes places of grace.

Summer has come to North Carolina with a vengeance! Last week brought us temperatures in the 90's. So I was delighted to see lots of summery posts in last week's link up.

If you're like me, you enjoy all things patriotic in the summertime. For some great patriotic decor inspiration, you should check out Penny's Vintage Home.


If you're looking for ways to add patriotic decor to a porch, you'll be glad to see what Paula at Sweet Pea has come up with. Paula is the master of using vintage items in her decor in every season.


If you're looking for ways to spruce up your indoor decor for summertime, you'll be glad to see that Carol at Comfort Spring  has rounded up 15 free summer printables.


If you have children at home, you may have already run into those feelings of not knowing how to keep kids occupied in the summertime. Nicole, Mama of Many Blessings, offers a long list of fun (and cheap!) summertime activities for kids.
If you're looking for ways to get dinner ready without heating up the kitchen, the Instant Pot may be your best friend this summer. Sarah from Must Have Mom has rounded up a bunch of pork recipes for the Instant Pot. I'm looking forward to trying some of these.


Dr. Michelle Bengtson offers both her real-life patients and her readers wonderful advice and a consistent message of hope. You'll be glad to read her post on healing from John 5: Do You Want to Get Well?


Thank you to everyone who joined last week's party! I'm so grateful for everyone who participates.

Now it's time for this week's link-up!  I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  Note that if you link a post here, you are giving me permission to share your post, including a photo.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!
You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter