Author Archive: Julia

A big contribution

“In all your relationships, you’re never too small to make a big contribution, and never too big to make a small one.” — Mardy Grothe Thanks to everyone here who visits here!  You have given to us in big and small ways over the past year.  I thought all of us could use a mental …

Continue reading

No greater challenge

“There is no greater challenge to statesmanship than to find a way that such sacrifices as this statue represents are not necessary in the future.” — Richard M. Nixon, referring to the U. S. Marine Corps War Memorial Anyone who has been through cancer treatment knows that war is a very good metaphor for the …

Continue reading

The most glorious messes

“One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.” ― Andy Rooney I don’t know whether they should get credit or blame, but Mama and Daddy made all their kids into adults who love Christmas. I guess there’s …

Continue reading

Joy is what happens

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” ― Marianne Williamson We don’t tend to think of airports as comfortable or happy places, but this video might change your mind.  During my years with USAir, I often thought how the airport gates were a setting that …

Continue reading

Consolation brought me joy

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.” — Psalm 94:19 Here in the northern hemisphere, December is the month of consolation, when the cold and decay of nature’s landscape are offset by the joys of celebration and gratitude.  Today we thank you for the cheer and solace of your kind thoughts, …

Continue reading

Home is not where

“Home is not where, it is whom.” -Christianne Dettmann As most readers have figured out by now, I’m no longer posting two weeks in advance, but taking it day by day as I am able.  Since my days are mostly spent in hospitals lately, I have a bit of a one-track mind.  In any case, …

Continue reading

Out of suffering

“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.” — Kahlil Gibran This photo is rather odd, but it seems fitting as a symbol for where Jeff is now, on his 55th birthday. He’s in a place of past nightmares and trauma, somehow surviving (thus far) life-threatening complications …

Continue reading

I am grateful

“I am grateful for the beauty in the midst of suffering. I am grateful for the treasure hunt through the minefield of life.  Dangerous or not, I don’t want out of the minefield.  Because truth, and beauty , and God are there.” – Glennon Doyle Melton As I write this, the day before Thanksgiving, Jeff …

Continue reading

Nevertheless

“The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts.  No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving.” — H.U. Westermayer I was unable to find out anything about who H. U. Westermayer was, though I did find others asking the same question. While they were similarly unsuccessful …

Continue reading

A hope

“Grieve in places the world does not forgive.  Rejoice in places the world does not notice.  Live with a patience that the culture cannot sustain, and a hope that the world cannot imagine.” – Krista Tippett Thanks to all who visit this site, and  especially to all of you who have grieved, rejoiced, and hoped …

Continue reading

Following the paths

“If you are ill or facing adversity, you can begin to heal yourself by following the paths others have followed. Forgive yourself and others, live with hope, faith and love and watch the results in your life and in the lives you touch. Remember that success and healing refer to what you do with your …

Continue reading

Not destroyed

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” — 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 (NIV) It’s a bit frightening, being this close to the edge of suffering and death.  It’s not territory we chose to explore, but even from here, the view …

Continue reading

A blissful perfection

“There is a blissful perfection in even the smallest, most mundane facets of everyday life, and appreciating this is an important source of happiness…Humans adapt to any type of experience, but scholars suggest that we’re less likely to adapt to tiny pleasures because, by their nature, they are unexpected and different each time they occur.” …

Continue reading

No shortcuts

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” — Beverly Sills It may be a long and winding road, but it’s filled with beauty, discovery and enchantment. Enjoy the journey! One year ago today: Unlock the Fullness of Life This post was first published seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo …

Continue reading

Children and dogs

“Children and dogs are as necessary to the welfare of the country as Wall Street and the railroads.” — Harry S Truman In fact, I’d say they are even more necessary. I’m so grateful for them! One year ago today: Unknown blessings Pasha, this will be our first Thanksgiving without you.Now and always, we miss …

Continue reading

Peculiar and inexhaustible influence

“Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn–that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence…” — Jane Austen Monday, …

Continue reading

Pleasure in the pathless woods

“There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, There is a rapture on the lonely shore, There is society, where none intrudes, By the deep sea, and music in its roar: I love not man the less, but Nature more…”  —Lord Byron There’s something very calming about nature that neutralizes the toxic overload of a …

Continue reading

Only with gratitude

“In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer Have you ever had a friend who seemed to give you much more than you gave her or him?  At times, we feel helpless ever …

Continue reading

What is good

He has shown you, O man, what is good.     And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy     and to walk humbly with your God.  Micah 6:8 One year ago today: Even in Darkness (written the day we received the most devastating diagnosis) This post was first published seven …

Continue reading

Remembering: Beyond all reason

“God does not die on the day when we cease to believe in a personal deity, but we die on the day when our lives cease to be illumined by the steady radiance, renewed daily, of a wonder, the source of which is beyond all reason.”  – Dag Hammarskjold Update one year later, 11-16-13: There I …

Continue reading

Remembering: Something in the autumn

There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood — Touch of manner, hint of mood; And my heart is like a rhyme, With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.  — Bliss Carman Autumn reminds us of the brevity of life as the lush blossoms of summer fade …

Continue reading

Remembering: Little advantages

“Human felicity is produced not so much by great pieces of good fortune that seldom happen, as by little advantages that occur every day.” —Benjamin Franklin Just as it’s often the minor irritations that distract us and wear us down, so too the power of small blessings can transform our lives.  The trick is becoming aware of …

Continue reading

Remembering: Promises to keep

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep.  But I have promises to keep,  And miles to go before I sleep…”  — Robert Frost It’s tempting to be drawn into our own ruminations. Trouble can be an isolating experience, and solitude is a seductive force, both healing and dangerous. If we withdraw too long or too …

Continue reading

Remembering: How the light gets in

Ring the bells that still can ring Forget your perfect offering There is a crack in everything That’s how the light gets in.  — Leonard Cohen Update for 11-12-13:  After 365 different posts, this one remains one of my very favorites.  I have had that quote on my refrigerator for years.  And the photo of …

Continue reading

Remembering: If you can…

Lines from one of my favorite poems, If   by Rudyard Kipling: If you can dream – and not make dreams your master; If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim; If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same; If you can bear to …

Continue reading