a few of his favorite things

"my favorite things"

Long, long ago, before I knew anything at all about love language, I put together this collage and framed it as a birthday present for my dear man. I was sure he would love it. Trouble is, pictures are MY love language, not his. Now . . . I had so much fun taking pictures of all the things he loves (with film) and having them made into prints, then cutting and “waxing” them and arranging them to fit the frame that even all these years later it doesn’t bother me that he received it kindly, gave it a thorough look, and set it aside. Eventually I took it to the attic where it lived undisturbed until scanning it was an option.

Gotta love technology!

Meanwhile I learned all about love language. Daily back scratches supersede photo collages on my man’s list, I know that now. And most interesting to me is how little has changed since my early days as his wife. He still carries a hacky sack in his pocket, he still loves gadgets, coffee, smoking meat, old cars, his kids, his piano/guitar/trombone, funky lamps, his dog (though a different one), biking, hot peppers, and best of all—he still likes me!

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true romance

Before I left for work this morning I confirmed with my Valentine that we don’t buy or make each other cards and we don’t buy each other Valentine gifts and we don’t waste money on flowers or chocolate and etc. Right. Confirmed. Instead we make a plan for a cook-and-stay-at-home meal, which, since I am at the office all day, he will be mostly responsible for preparing. Right. Confirmed.

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It’s Tuesday, so I stayed a little later at the office to scan some pictures while Mauri rehearsed with Newberg Brass in the studio. When I got home I found this on the cookin’ room table. Um. I thought we had a deal. Still, I thought it was lovely — a balloon, some candies, and a movie coupon . . . for one?

“Thanks for the special surprise you got me,” I told my Valentine. He sheepishly explained that it was actually a surprise for him. See, he had his teeth cleaned this morning and along with walking out with a new toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss, he was given a special Valentine surprise. Our dentist gave him candy.

But that isn’t all.

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Michelle brought donuts to team meeting this morning as a Valentine treat and put the leftovers in the office kitchen. Since I hadn’t eaten one earlier I justified taking one home and then oh well why not two? (I promise, they tasted better than they look in this picture.)

So for two Valentine grinches, we ended up with a not-too-shabby celebration anyway.

We really do love each other, and each other knows it.

Note to self: Schedule teeth cleaning on Valentine’s Day 2018.

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after school

Granddaughter Sage lives on the other side of town but goes to school one block away from us at the same elementary school her daddy attended. She won a lottery position in a dual-language school that teaches her Spanish along with English.

“I already know English, so it’s really only Spanish I’m learning,” she told me today. We had an after-school “Gus date” so we could finish the loop-loom potholder she started several weeks ago.

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With our remaining time we colored together and talked, then I watched her follow perfectly these step instructions to draw a butterfly. Now that she’s nearly six (two weeks and three days) I can see us enjoying more after-school craft-and-make-things Gus dates.

Maybe you have ideas for me.

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winning loss

Gilbert Christian

Marissa’s soccer team was disappointed to not make it to state this year (and her last year to play for Gilbert Christian), but I prefer to think of all the games they won to get to the semi-finals.


Here’s our winning granddaughter Marissa with her parents, who both look a little cold in this picture. Do you mean to tell me they have to wear jackets in Arizona? Are those clouds I see?

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Courtney is only one of I’ll say many delightful young women at Hillside Fellowship, and more specifically in my women’s Bible study group, “Women of Hillside.” We meet on Saturday mornings but have been on a way-too-long break for the holidays. This morning was our first time back, and we were all r-e-a-d-y to be together again. Clearly, I am the oldest in the group and there are two other “olders,” but all the rest are young mothers or young professionals. One of these days I’ll take a picture to show you.

We are all on Facebook, so I get to see the parts of their lives they are willing to share.

Courtney and Aaron

I don’t have Courtney’s permission to use this picture with her husband, so I’ll give only her first name. She has a blog, so I’m probably safe in assuming she isn’t internet shy.


On Facebook she shared her interest in “doodling” (she calls it), and later offered to practice her skills (she doesn’t call it) by doodling a Bible verse for us. I couldn’t miss out on an offer like that?

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Nice, huh? She gave it to me this morning. This is its temporary “frame” until I can find one more fitting. I was careful to not put holes in it.

If you could listen in on our depthy discussions, you might find renewed hope for the future of Christian womanhood—as I do.

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declan’s big news


It’s been officially announced, so I finally get to share Declan’s announcement!

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surprise visitor

This afternoon this happened:

Yup, I looked up and Taylor was standing at my office door.

T showed up

He’s in Oregon on business, on the road from the Portland airport to Corvallis.

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Since he arrived hungry, we went to Abby’s Pizza so he could eat and I could sit across the table from him and grin.

After lunch we went to 514 to see if maybe Mauri was back from his outing. Sadly, he was not; but T got to look around at all the work we’ve been doing around the homestead.

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Back at the office T got out of the car to give his mama a proper goodbye hug, and off he went.

I haven’t wiped the silly grin off my face yet.

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