Seeing Stars and the Holy Trinity

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I love apples! Seriously. Love them almost more than chocolate. Biting into a warm, crisp, just picked apple is only one step away from doing the same in summer with tomatoes. Living in Michigan, where apple production ranks number three in the States, the harvest of this fruit peaks in late September through early October. [Read More...]

Taking One Step When a Full Stride is too Much

Grandmother's Table, September 2013

Clearing Away (September 2008) I looked at my grandmother’s small kitchen table and found myself saddened by the mountainous mess. Boxes of soup broth that never made it to the basement pantry support crumpled paper bags and window curtain hardware. There were small jars of organic grapefruit juice, a pint of ammonia for the laundry, [Read More...]

Black Birds Landing

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A murder of crows swooped loud and large into the back yard. Their boisterous cawing drowned out the traffic noise from the other side of the house. The littler song birds flew away— in fear or possibly annoyance. Whatever morning peace existed departed with the winged invasion. The crows, and there were maybe twenty, landed [Read More...]

Perils of Digging Potatoes

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I’ve been a city-dwelling gardener all my life. I’ve worked on  overgrown lots that hid a multitude of sins, to old suburban back-yards with compacted patchy lawns. When I would begin to transform a landscape I would be unsure of what would be unearthed; one year I dug up a lawn chair. Gardening was done [Read More...]

Hummer at Work

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It was mid-morning and the sun had finally dissolved the fog from the cool damp night. I saw that some of the leaves still glistened with dampness. Making the bed I pulled the white and periwinkle quilt up and over the pillows and glanced out the upstairs window. The blue Rose-of-Sharon grows just below. Moving about [Read More...]

Cardinal at My Window

Earlier in the spring I was blessed with two nests of cardinals in my yard. Cardinals are very territorial birds but for some reason these two families shared the space congenially. The two nests of fledglings gave way to a small flock darting about the Locust tree and flowering shrubs. One late-summer morning a flash [Read More...]

Please Return Me to My Cell

Tom and me

The Catholic Writers Guild conference last week was a huge success. This was our fifth year and we have doubled in attendance. My job at the conferences was volunteer coordinator. This year was particularly challenging: I had put my back out days before, then three volunteers quit due to family emergencies or illness. I had [Read More...]

Gayety in the Garden

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Those of you who have been following my blog know that it has been a challenge this season tearing out my gardens that I have lovingly attended to for over twenty-five years. What remains are flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, and lots of bare soil needing mulch. Not so long ago problems with my back laid [Read More...]

Doubt in the Family

On the cover of the 2012 July issue of Magnificat is a painting of Anne and Joachim, Mary’s parents. In looking at this image it occurred to me that there may have been a lot of doubts in this nuclear family. The elderly Anne and Joachim were childless. Legend tells us that on one particular [Read More...]

As Long as Nobody’s Watching

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As long as nobody’s watching, I’ll dance. Don’t for a minute imagine that I’m a “good” dancer. The simple truth is I can’t not move to music. It began before I was a year old. My grandmother said if music was on I would wiggle and sway when I crawled, when laid in the crib, or [Read More...]


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