Sunday, April 26, 2015

april 26, 2015

Jane and Preston came to church with us this afternoon. 
The power kept going out and finally went out for good. 
The meeting finished with all of us 
in the congregation singing "Love One Another" 
to the piano instead of the usual organ.
All of us sitting there in the dim and darkness.
It was an experience that hasn't left me.
Simple, beautiful, and intimate.
And powerful in a way I can't really describe.

We came home and I fixed a spaghetti dinner.
Made the pie this morning.
So good still a little frozen.

Since we ate our dinner earlier than we usually do, 
I indulged in a good, long nap this afternoon.
I dream so vividly and sometimes 
the dreams can get pretty bizarre.
In this one, there was a loud noise 
that rattled one of my teeth loose.
It was a golden tooth that I set aside and later couldn't find.
Someone at church had moved it and it was lost.
Wonder if that means anything.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

april 25, 2015



...and a proposal!!

Congratulations Jane and Preston
on your engagement today.
We are overjoyed for your happiness and forthcoming union.

More details to come!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

april 22, 2015

how i love you, mom.
your life is a precious gift to me and countless others.
more than you could ever imagine.
wishing every happiness, joy, and peace to you on your special day.

xoxo always

Friday, April 17, 2015

april 17, 2015

If someone should ask me, "What does the soul do?" 
I would say, It does two things. 
It loves. 
And it creates. 
Those are its primary acts.

~Sue Monk Kidd

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

changing, practicing, and pursuing a passion

feeling an increasing quiet,
an ongoing struggle
to pull out words 

wondering and soul-searching
how this space,
this expression of self
has taken shape
and will evolve
as i continue to change 
and evolve.

for now,
it feels good and right and even necessary
to follow my passion
to continue to capture and share images 
of my world--

photos alone
and perhaps, 
some days,
with words
when truly moved or inspired

i guess i just needed to give myself the permission to do so

thanks for sharing the journey
with me



So inspired with a Netflix documentary I found Sunday called Monk With a Camera . Extremely interesting for me, this rare combination of topics and passions, this thing I have for both photography and Buddhist monks.

Reminding me that if I want to become a really good photographer, as well as have a mindful life,

I must practice.

And just like a pianist must practice his scales every single day, it truly is essential that I take photos, open my eyes every single day. Have my camera always by my side. This film a gentle admonition and answer that no thing, no moment is too ordinary to see and to share. 

Even if I don't have the words.

Thursday, April 9, 2015


smiling:: Gary is studying Middle Eastern Studies/Arabic at his university. He, along with twenty other students from B.Y.U. were selected to attend the National College Model Arab League this week in Washington DC. (Their group is representing Saudi Arabia.) I'm so happy (and, I must say a very proud Mama) for him being able to participate in this experience, but also to have the chance to visit our nation's capitol. (His third visit-- once when we visited as a family when he was about 11 years old, the other time as a teen when he represented Utah at a youth leadership conference.)

I woke up early this morning, as usual, and was on my iPad. Lucky me because of the wonderful opportunity and timing of Gary getting on Facetime with me. How he woke up at 5:30 this morning all ready to set out on a walk from his hotel to the magnificent Japanese cherry blossom path of Washington's Tidal Basin. How he wanted to show his mom the beautiful spring blossoms he knew she'd love and has longed to see. 

Later, he sent me these pics. And this is what I responded:

Awesome!!! I'm so happy for you!!! Tears in my eyes and a big smile on my face. Enjoy every minute of this wonderful experience, Gare. I love you, mom

eating and drinking:: dunking toast in a my new favorite hot beverage: almond milk + turmeric + cinnamon + Dandy Blend + raw honey. So good.

outing:: a little Spring Break adventure yesterday with Eliza and Isaac. Took the "Frontrunner" train up to Salt Lake (first time for me, but not the kids); sitting up high on the double decker second floor. People watching is always fun. New scenery is always interesting, too. Walked in the chill and drizzle to the shopping district. Wandered around a candy store, watched that sweet Cinderella film at the movie theater, ate sweet potato fries and veggie stir fries for our lunch, looked at the cool exhibits at the planetarium, killed time at Barnes and Noble before heading back (me trying to keep up with the pace of running children) out in the rain to catch our soon-to-be-departing train back home. Holding Isaac on my lap part of the way (even though the seat next to me was empty), him nestling with arms and legs draped over me on the couch later that night. Falling asleep in each others arms.

I cherish days like these.

listening::  Like the Dawn: The Oh Hellos. Listening to this over and over. So beautiful. Eliza introduces me to the best music.

reading:: The Dance of the Dissident Daughter (Sue Monk Kidd), A God Who Looks Like Me (Patricia Reilly)


watching:: discovered the PBS series Wolf Hall the other day. A new Masterpiece production to enjoy and look forward to every week. A way to ease my Downton Abbey withdrawals, I guess.

remembering:: this image I captured a year ago this very day. A nearby field and tree I've photographed many times through the years and throughout the seasons. I always looked forward to April's carpet of small purple blossoms; almost reminding me of a field of heather. A special place along my running route that brought me a lot of beauty and a lot of peace. 

Since I haven't been running this year, I thought I'd take a drive by the other day. Sadly, this cherished view no longer exists. The field recently plowed over and tree toppled, all making way for a new subdivision development. Especially heart breaking for me to see this proud tree that stood out there all alone for who knows how many years through rain or shine; its glory finally surrendered and laying helplessly on its side. 

With this and other changes in my environment, I realize that change is inevitable. Change is the one constant. To live is to change. Grateful, most of all, for the precious gift I've been given to open my eyes; seeing, capturing, and recording the beauty that's all around me. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

10 things

1.  having the kids come home for Easter weekend.

2.  not being able to be with Sam to celebrate his birthday yesterday. Heart-ache.

3. sneaking too many Cadbury chocolate eggs from Eliza's Easter basket. Where has my self-control gone?

4. a wonderful 30 year reunion with friends who I love and consider my family.

5. Spring Break for the kids this week. Nothing planned, things pretty low-key around here.

6. A proud and happy shout out for Jane getting promoted to team lead on her Manderin job at doTERRA.

7. My dad joining Facebook. So fun!!

8. Easter Sunday family reunion with Keith's cousins. How good it was to sit around the table listening to stories and childhood memories.

9. Physical therapy finally coming to an end. What will I do with all this free time? The yard and garden are calling my name...  

10. I posted this photo of myself last week on a private Facebook group I'm in. A few days later a woman contacted me (seeing my maiden name of Ficklin in addition to the photo):

 This is a long shot, but, we saw your DYT photo online. Here is a photo of my daughter and great aunt, who is, long deceased. We thought the family resemblance is uncanny. Her name was Helen Ficklin. Does this at all sound like we possibly could share relatives? Especially since we feel you look like these two ladies! What do you think? Thank you for your time!

So fun and so freaky!! We all couldn't get over how crazy it all was. Even Keith who I thought would be kind of skeptical really was amazed at the resemblance. My sister seeing this on my Facebook wall commenting: "I am freaking out! The lady on the right looks amazingly just like you!! Actually, I thought it was you and I was so confused by the post. My jaw hit the ground when I reread it and see that it's someone else. She is a twin!" 

Fascinating in that we not only share the same name (I'm sure that we are somehow related as Ficklin isn't a common name), but absolutely amazed at how much this woman's daughter and I look alike. 

Wow. Just WOW.