It’s Thankful Tuesday. I spent last night participating in one of the great American summer pastimes. I joined my husband, my brother and my sister in law at a Giants/Cubs game. We ate hotdogs and garlic fries. We also drank hot chocolate. Aimee and I covered our legs with a blanket. We wore three layers of clothes, mittens, and I sported a lovely yellow winter hat. Yes, this is month of August in San Francisco. I’ve always been a summer… Read more

There are some poets who will never be kindred spirits and whose poems are usually far beyond my aesthetic yum-sensors. William Butler Yeats is that way. I took a course on him in grad school, the fall of 2002. I learned that he was a genius. That he did remarkable things with form. And every so often, I read one of his poems that stunned me with its beauty. I never returned to Yeats after that class, despite my new… Read more

Tomorrow I will post our new poem for the month of August. But before doing so, I feel it’s time to give “Staying Power,” our poem for June and July (it was a hard one to learn!) a proper send off. In our short time of memorizing poetry together, I’ve never had such a response to a poem in the sidebar. The day I posted it in June was one of my highest blog traffic days yet. It’s a poem… Read more

Over the past couple of weeks, whenever I saw the cover of Rachel Held Evans’ Evolving in Monkey Town lying around my house, my brain would immediately jump into a chorus of “Won’t you take me to / Funky Town!” Funky Town, Monkey Town…who knows the workings of the mind? Other than the disco background noise in my head, reading Evans’ book was an adventure in my own personally charted territory. In fact, while reading her book, I constantly felt… Read more

We’re in the never-ending process of looking for a new apartment. (Thankfully, our time in this one is not quite spent.) And I’m peering into every possible new home aching for one thing (really, two): a washer and a dryer (Not shared! Not requiring correct change!). Yesterday, after walking the courtyard steps (up and down) with August and our laundry load over and over and feeling the bitter rise up my throat, I was reminded that doing the laundry with… Read more

Since Anne Rice’s declaration of her rejection of “Christianity” last week, the blogs I read can’t stop talking about it. (See proof here, here, and here.) It’s not that Anne Rice is (or was?) such a superstar Christian and that the believing world is devastated, it’s that she brought up what many in my generation have been struggling with for years. How many times have I heard someone say: “I follow Jesus but I can’t refer to myself as a… Read more

It’s not raining here. But perhaps one of you somewhere is reading this in a warm town while rain falls romantically on your tin roof. And the air is warm enough that you could walk outside for a little splash in your flip flops. Perhaps I’m nostalgic because this is my first “summer” in San Francisco where it’s constantly in the 60s and I keep forgetting it’s July.  But I just needed to read this poem today and be reminded… Read more

Last month I  complained about my son’s sleep issues. I can’t complain anymore. He’s happily floating on his metaphorical dream cloud as I type this. He no longer cries when it’s time for us to leave the room (thanks Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child!). Instead, in the middle of Chris’ prayer for him tonight, he said, “Bye, Mommy.” I said, “Do you just want Daddy to sing you a song tonight?” “Yep,” he said. Well, okay then. Chris was out… Read more

This morning in our worship service, I opened my leaflet and got all giddy for an 9th century hymn we were singing. (Of course, translated into English and given a modern melody in 2005). I’ve only learned of “Come, Holy Ghost” since we began worshiping at City Church, but I can never get enough of it. Its chorus is everything a weak-faithed, self obsessed, anxious mother needs to hear the Lord sing to her on a Sunday morning. The chorus… Read more

Last Thursday morning, after the Office of Vigils and before Morning Praise at the monastery, I joined the community in a personal time of Lectio Divina. The Benedictines have been practicing this act of deliberate scripture study for 1500 years. It was a beautiful morning—bright, barely crisp, just cool enough in the mountains to require a sweatshirt. I’d borrowed my mom’s bright pink Young Life sweatshirt for the trip. It was big. It was cozy. We had thirty minutes for… Read more

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