Turtle Soup

I sat down winded.  I’d rushed to get to youth group Wednesday and needed to catch my breath.  The kids were lining up to get their dinner so I had a minute to collect myself before I had to be sociable.  The dinner I’d inhaled at home felt like dead weight in my stomach. It must have shown because the minute she sat down, Chloe the group’s most inquisitive member said, “Does your stomach hurt Kären?” Chloe would never lean over and ask me anything quietly so now all eyes […]

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Better In the Morning

It was a gray day.  The weather suited my mood.  I felt blah.  Exhausted after Christmas week and fighting a cold I wasn’t in the New Year’s Eve spirit at all.  Normally a productive day, which I’d had, will snap me out of it but that wasn’t the case.  The pennies that met me everywhere I went were greeted with only a faint smile. I had one last stop to make at the grocery store.  Chase needed something to finish one of his creations.  I couldn’t help but think about […]

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Black Friday

Yesterday bringing in the newspaper took two hands—one to carry the news portion and the other the bundle of ads.  In our town that means the news weighed less than a pound and the advertisements a good five pounds.  It was a lopsided workout to be sure.  The ads went straight to the recycle bin.  I try not to go shopping on Black Friday.  Not because of any ethical considerations but because I don’t like crowds of people.  On a day when I’m tired from having cooked and cleaned for […]

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Eye Contact

They know what I’m going to say.  It’s not very original but when you’re face is obscured by the camera you can’t just smile and hope to solicit one back.  So, off my tongue it rolls, “Look at me and say MOMMY!” over and over until we get a decent shot. Last Saturday was the day for this familiar refrain.  It was time for the annual Christmas photo shoot.  Every year the boys dread it but this year I threw them for a loop when I said, “We’re not going […]

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Home Ec

In 7th grade I failed Home Economics.  People don’t believe me when I say this but it’s true.  Why I thought of that today when I was checking the air pressure on my tires I don’t know.  Maybe because it was cold and my mind was on soup?  Or maybe because I was handling a car-related job with ease and never took auto shop? Once inflated my tires held the road a little better and I felt pretty smug.  I came home and threw the penny I’d found at the […]

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Gift

“Do you use Avon?” she asked. “No.” “Why not?” Her question caught me off guard so I didn’t have an answered prepared.  However, I knew that my teenage friend Chloe wasn’t going to settle for half an answer.  Her sister sells Avon so this was too important. “I have really sensitive skin,” I said. “So?” “So, I don’t want to change from what I’m using that works for me.” I could see where this was heading and tried unsuccessfully to change the subject.  Chloe wasn’t going to let that happen […]

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Sophisticated

Words have a way of sticking in your heart like a single drop of Crazy Glue to your skin.  In time the sting wears off but there’s always a residue left behind. Last year I had one of those experiences with Chase’s art teacher.  He hadn’t been signed up for her class but the woodshop teacher had, “serious concerns” about a kid like Chase being in his 3-D design class.  So, to meet his fine art requirement the art teacher agreed to spare her colleague and create an independent study […]

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A Fan of You

I got myself out of the house at 7:00 AM which is unheard of on a Sunday morning.  I’d set out early to buy the week’s groceries before church.  Luke was coming over after service to watch his beloved Eagles play their second game of the season.   He could watch in his dorm but Chip Kelly’s offense would look better in high def at home and the snacks are free. Not even coffee makes grocery shopping that early easy but I managed.  At the check out the clerk asked me […]

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See What You Want To See

As I started to walk past her she motioned with her head toward the floor.  Her eyes locked on all the change.  She knew I would stop and pick it up. It was quite a bit—a dime and several pennies. “How many is that now?” she asked. “A little over 23,000.” “You’re kidding me?” “Nope.” Then it started.  A rant from Stephanie I’d never heard before.  In the few years she’s worked at our neighborhood store I’ve gotten to know her enough to be on familiar terms. I know what […]

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Viral

I swore last year I wasn’t planting one.  Then spring sprung and before you know it I was at the nursery buying plants—all the time knowing the potential for heartbreak was great. I started early and carefully hardened my Early Girl’s setting them outside daily for ever increasing amounts of time.  While I was doing that I aerated and fertilized the soil.  Next I installed a drip system and built covers for the plants in the event of a late freeze.  For once maybe I’d thought of everything! With every […]

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