Tag Archives: hummingbirds

magic in the storm

IMG_6517aAll night the wind blew and the snow fell. We had not seen this kind of storm for years, maybe even a decade. We were house bound, except for a few walks around the house to shovel the walks, to make sure the bird feeders were stocked and the hummingbird feeders were not frozen.

On this morning I woke before the rest of the house. This was not unusual, I like the quiet of the house in the mornings. But this morning  I needed to bundle up a bit and take out the hummingbird feeder before I settled in with my cup of coffee. I stepped out on to the front porch with the feeder, and was met by Mr. Hummingbird. He sat and fed while I still held the feeder. I ever so slowly reached out my hand and stroked his back, he looked up, and continued to feed. When he had his fill, he flew off.

It was still storming all around me. I stood transfixed, in awe at the gift I had just been given.

Isn’t this just like God? With a storm raging all around, God gave me a very magical gift. Maybe if I stop raging back at the storms of my life and look for them, I might just fine that my most magical moments come in the midst of the storms.IMG_6584a

My word for 2014

IMG_5937This year instead of resolutions, which I haven’t done for years anyway, I decided to pick one word to practice and ponder all year. This year I have chosen Thankfulness. This word really is so many other words; grateful, thanks, praise, gratefulness, thanks, gratitude . . . it is a pretty easy word to find enough to read about and ponder all year.

I also wanted a word I could put into action, not just to be thankful, but to show thankfulness. I think this can be acted out in many ways also, remembering to tell others in my life how thankful I am to have them. Show how thankful I am for what I have by sharing it with those who are not as fortunate.

I wanted a word that I could put into action in my everyday life, including work. I wanted a word that I could involve others in. This word Thankfulness, has been my word for about 20 days. (I got a slow start, this whole thing of Christmas and New Year’s falling in the middle of the week really threw me off this year.)

At work I posted a large sheet of paper on my door, my goal was to write one thing every day on my way into my office that I was thankful for. I invited others to join it, what a treat that has been. Every day there is something new on it that I did not put there. Funny things and serious things, it starts my day with such joy. So many people have joined in that I have had to add another sheet.

I am also doing my best to post a quote or Bible verse, every day on Facebook. I search through my photography for a photo that I love, then look for a quote that fits. This means I am reading many quotes every day that inspire me. I am also studying the word for my devotions.

My goal in all of this is that by the end of the year, thankfulness is so woven into my fabric that it is not just a habit, but truly a way of life.

I do have so much to be thankful for . . .

Angel’s Wings

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This was my first view when I walked out side this morning. It made me think of angel wings. Today, two years ago, my son, my first born, woke up in heaven.

I mourn for me, for my daughter, for our family, but rejoice for him. I rejoice in the fact that I will see him again, someday. Some days, that does not feel like enough, I would love to talk to him, hug him, just be with him for a bit. I would love to tell him one more time that I love him, it occurred to me this morning that those were the last words we spoke to each other. In the end, it is enough. It’s enough to have the hope of heaven and the reunion that will take place.

I carry a strange mix of emotions, a deep sadness and pain, for the loss, but at the same time an amazing peace. I take comfort in the little reminders all around me that God loves me, he knows my pain. I feel his love through angel’s wings in the sky, hummingbirds buzzing my head, the sounds of sparrows quarrelling over who knows what, family and friends that surround me, the beautiful smile of my daughter, and the warmth of my husbands embrace.

Even though I miss Jason more than I can say, I have a peace, a deep peace that is deeper than the pain, and at the end of the day I know with all my heart that God is good all the time.

My new life . . .

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A lifetime ago, I skipped my way through spring and ran toward summer, arms open wide. My hands in the dirt, anxiously waiting for those little green sprouts to peak up through the brown dirt. My excitement about growing things and being outside in the sun knew no bounds.

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That was a lifetime ago, in my new life, I run toward summer, but there is a sharp pain in my chest. I push on; I love this time of year. My heart hurts. I stop and take a deep breath; the pain does not go away. I push on, skipping, running. The pain is still there. I push on.

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I want to love summer in the carefree way I always have, but the reality is that I will never again skip through spring and run toward summer in the same way. There will always be the pain.

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In this new life I continue to look at the amazing things that spring and summer bring with a sense of awe and wonder; the sounds of hummingbird wings, the smell of honeysuckle, and the feel of the sun on my shoulders. I will still skip and run, but the wonder of summer is tempered by the pain in my heart, in this . . . my new life.

Letting go

This week has been a tough one. Even after trying to process why all day yesterday, I have  not been able to put my finger on any one thing. I have been moody, and tears have been just a  blink away. But I think I have narrowed it down.

The rain has started, after a long beautifully sunny summer and early fall. Thursday evening, we put summer away. Tim did what was probably the last mow of the season. I moved any furniture that was outside to the inside. I zipped up the swing. I cried. For some reason I am not ready, even yet, to put summer away and let fall take its place.

I have moved my weekend early morning routine to the attic. I love this space, but I miss the garden and the hummingbirds.

I realized yesterday that I have not taken pictures of this beautiful fall we have been having. I am already sorry for that, the colors have been brilliant. The leaves have hung on longer this year, probably because of the dry weather.

I know by clinging to summer I have missed some of the beauty of fall, but I don’t seem to want to let go. It feels as if something precious is being ripped from me.

As I finish this post, I am watching the most beautiful sunrise unfold from my attic window. I am sitting in my grandmother’s 70’s orange rocking chair, wrapped in a blanket made by her for me. It is kind of like a hug from heaven.

Today I will practice letting go, I will say good bye to summer. I will practice embracing this fall that will soon turn to winter. My hanging on does not change the fact that the seasons are changing, it just makes me miserable.
Today I let go, a little more.

Precious Nuggets

This morning I am sitting in the garden, I am realizing this may be one of the last mornings I will be here in this quiet place. It is a bit chilly. It makes me a bit sad. I love sitting here listing to the birds, watching the hummingbirds flit around. I will miss this routine.

A good friend of Jason’s posted this on his Facebook wall for his birthday. “She was no longer wrestling with grief, but could sit down with it as a lasting companion and make it a sharer in her thoughts.” – George Elliot.  She went on to write “Jason, you are missed. Not in storms of weeping, not in cries of pain, but in quiet ways on everyday.” – JW

I did not see it until yesterday. I am not sure how I missed it, but the timing of seeing it yesterday was amazing. I had just been thinking over this last week, that I seem to be having more sad days, not really even whole days but moments. I have been trying to figure out why. It dawned on me yesterday.

Tim and I took a drive to Tillamook, with the ultimate destination Lincoln City for a concert in the evening. Whenever I go to that part of the coast I can not help but think about the many times Chelsey, Jason and I toured the cheese factory there. How Jason loved cheese curds. When I am near there, I always want to stop at a little fruit stand near Beaver. We stopped yesterday, and as I wandered around I wondered to myself why I was there. This fruit stand is not particularly a favorite, the service lacks something. It is disorganized, and expensive. As I was looking and trying to figure out why I always have to stop there, I remembered. This was one of Jason’s favorite stops, not because he loved fruit or veggies, but they have a hot sauce bar with about 30 different sauces to sample. Jason loved this, he would stand there and sample and sample and sample. Eventually he would pick a favorite and buy it, but oh he loved his hot sauces.

I realized in that moment why I am having these moment more often. It is not just that this is the one year, it is that for many months as memories came to me I would wrap them up and put them away to be looked at another time.  Precious nuggets, to be dealt with later, I could not give them more than a quick glance. I was sure I would unravel.

I am finding now that I am unwrapping some of those memories, one or two at a time, looking at them, feeling them, enjoying them.  I will take these precious nuggets, examine them,  polish them, hold them in my heart, and proudly display them on the shelf of my mind. Yes, they will make me sad at times, but they are too precious to keep locked up. This is part of my healing.

A Million Ways

I think about this all the time, the million ways that God show me he cares for me and loves me. I wish I could explain the way I feel when I walk around the yard. It is almost a holy feeling, the presence of God in all that surrounds me. I think that is why I take pictures, I want to capture it and share it. I wonder if others feel it like I do.

I am sitting in Jason’s garden this morning, watching the hummingbirds feed. They seem to have come to some understanding since yesterday morning. Yesterday they about took my head off a couple times fighting over the “territory”. There are 3, with one very dominate, mouthy one. She normally does not tolerate the others feeding. She chases the male off most of the time, but this morning she seems to be okay with him hanging around. The third one comes and goes briefly, no guess to whether it is male or female. For that matter I am not really sure which is male or female, I just imagine the mouthy one is female. 🙂 In these birds, that give me so much pleasure, is one of the million ways I feel God’s presence and love.

I see and feel Him in so many things that I experience just in my yard.

Yesterday He sent me a little love in the form of a video from my nephew, it is an amazing tribute to Jason. You can find it here. (Collin did all the vocals in this.)

Yesterday morning I felt like I was sent an other little love note from God, I came out to Jason’s garden and found this little guy. Jason collected frogs. It felt like a little postcard from God, reminding me of the million ways he loves me.

There are so many ways, Chelsey, other family, friends, friends,  too many to count . . . millions. One of the big and everyday ways I feel God’s love is the gift of this man. I love him more each day and can not imagine having gone through this last year without him. I thank God everyday for bringing him to me and allowing him to love me.

Not a day goes by that I do not feel God, and the million ways.