The arabesques

Drew had these roses waiting for me when I returned from Bethesda. October 2016

Drew had these roses waiting for me when I returned from Bethesda. October 2016

The arabesques a hope can do… 
     the dances dreams can make…
the patterned pain a mind may shape…
     before a heart will break

Joan Walsh Anglund

Despite the risk of heartbreak, hope is a better way to live. I really believe that.

I am so thankful you are with us here. Your presence is a solace for which I’m deeply grateful.


  1. Dear Julia, thank you for sharing the beauty of the roses and your life, and the sweetness of Drew’s gesture and love with us.
    Prayers for you, when times seem dark; the Lord of Light is holding you gently in the pam of His Hand.

    • Thank you Susan! I appreciate your presence here. BTW I got the lovely book for Grady, and can’t wait to give it to him! I have pasted your letter inside so he will know the legacy behind it. Hope we can get together soon!!

  2. Cherie

    Dear dear Julia, I wish I could help you through the pain. You have my deepest sympathy and love as you and the family go forward. I LOVE YOU!!

    • Thank you Cherie. You are helping me through the pain just by being here and being you. ❤ ❤ ❤

  3. LB

    I can’t just “like” this because I love it so much. The thoughtfulness of Drew, the perfect quote, the beauty of the roses, and that you are here on WP. Thinking of you always, and loving you, too.

    • Thank you Laurie. I know that in years to come, when I look back on this time of great sorrow and grief, I’ll remember that you are one of the people who was with me in so many ways. I’m so grateful for you!

  4. Our love and prayers will continue to be with you, my dear sister.

    • Thank you Carla. Can’t wait to see you! I am so lucky to have been born into the same family as you!!!

  5. Ann

    Julia, I agree with you. Likewise, when we truly, wholeheartedly love someone, we open ourselves to the risk of heartbreak but the resulting joy is worth the risk.

    I shed tears with you and send you love and hope.

    • Thank you, Ann. Despite the heartache, no regrets! I’m so grateful for your presence here.

  6. Carolyn

    Prayers and love to all.

    • Thank you Carolyn. We love you!

  7. What a thoughtful Drew. Sending you my love and hugs to hold you through.

    • Thank you Marlene. Those hugs are more appreciated than ever! Sending giant happysad hugs and love to you too.

  8. You’ve raised two fine young men, Julia. The roses are beautiful and hopeful, casting a soft light into the day.

    Holding you in my heart as you grieve your great loss, humbled by your extraordinary world view. xo

    • Thank you Alys. I always feel that Moms who have sons have a special window into my life. You are a blessing, now and always.

  9. Sheila

    Dear Julia, I share your heartbreak in hopes in some very small way it will soften your pain and comfort your hurt. With our love, Sheila

    • Sheila, everything is better because we share it. The sad and hard times are more bearable, and the good times are way more fun. Thanks for being here. It really does help! ❤ ❤ ❤

  10. Amy

    Our hearts are heavy with you and for you. God bless you all. I love you.

    • Thank you dearest friend. Leaning on you is making all of this much more bearable.

  11. I continue to pray for you and your family.

    • Thank you, N — we need and appreciate the prayers, and your presence here!

  12. Rita Thompson

    My sincerest condolences.

    My sincerest condolences.

    • Thank you, Rita. I appreciate your presence here, and your kind thoughts.

  13. MaryAnn

    Julia: Thinking about you everyday and keeping you close in prayer!
    I love you,

    • Thank you Mary Ann! We love you too — and if Matt was awake right now, just the mention of your name would put a BIG grin on his face as always!

      • MaryAnn Clontz

        What great JOY that gives to me!

        • ❤ 🙂 ❤

  14. Raynard

    Julia sad news to report. After a short stay in rehab our beloved Ella Jean Thomas AKA Aunt Jayne departed this life. She was a fighter and a trooper till the end. Funeral arrangements are pending as her last wishes to be buried in NC next to her late father and sister Mary’s mother. We will keep you posted and ask that you keep us in your prayers blessed

    • Raynard, I was so saddened to hear you had lost Ms. Ella. What a beautiful and kind lady. I am so grateful I was able to meet her, if only briefly. I also am grateful that you and Mary opened your home to her when she needed you most. It is so wonderful that she was able to live with you and have you and Mary care for her. I know you will miss her terribly and we are keeping you close in prayer. Thanks for sharing Ms. Ella with us. Also thanks to Mary and you for the beautiful card you sent us.

    • Please add my condolences, Raynard. I SO enjoyed meeting Ms. Ella while I was with Julia!

      • Thanks, Carla. I’m so glad you got to meet Raynard, Mary and Ms. Ella. Plus you took the photo that has the all-time highest views in a single day on the blog! 😀

  15. Judy from Pennsylvania

    Beautiful roses. A beautiful love, shared.
    Holding you and Jeff in prayers.

    • Thank you, Judy. The card you sent is beautiful. I so appreciate your presence here.

  16. kemathew

    My thoughts and prayers are with you as you go through this tough time in your life.
    May God keep you in His mighty hands and give you peace , courage and comfort.


    • Thank you, K. E. We are so grateful for the prayers and kind thoughts!

  17. Carol Hoyos

    Philippians 4:11:
    “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” To me, it is a peaceful acceptance that I will experience both hardship and good times. But my trust, faith, and hope are in God, whose steadfast love and mercies are “new every morning.”

    • Yes, I love Lamentations 3:22-24, and also Psalm 143:8 — and the entire book of Philippians! As one of my favorite old hymns says, “How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord, is laid for your faith in his excellent word.” Thanks for bringing me reminders of that.

  18. Love you!

    • Love you too! And you KNOW Matt does too!

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