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Finding Hope in an Unlikely Place

I started running around the neighborhood to train for my marathon back in November. Over the months I watched Christmas lights get strung up on homes and trees. I noticed as the neighbors dutifully took them down come January, though I still see some hanging lifeless and dull. I smelled the delicious scent of burning...

When a Meal Is a Masterpiece

This year, I gave my husband the gift of an Italian cuisine cooking class at a local cooking school for his birthday. We spent the evening creating a meal of white bean tapenade smeared on crostini, porcini roasted beef, and bianco risotto cooked in saffron and vermouth. Together we sliced and diced vegetables for the...

The Story Worth Living

April showers bring May flowers, at least that's how it used to work. Around here the weather patterns seem to have shifted a bit since I was a young girl. This year we had an April snow shower that brought more snow than we saw all winter. A week later the April sunshine pushed the thermometer...

Finding Hope in an Unlikely Place

I started running around the neighborhood to train for my marathon back in November. Over the months I watched Christmas lights get strung up on homes and trees. I noticed as the neighbors dutifully took them down come January, though I still see some hanging lifeless and dull. I smelled the delicious scent of burning wood in the evenings and the welcoming aroma of spicy fish stew one morning. When...

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Living Out of Abundance, Not Scarcity

Do you ever feel this need to live life in scarcity mode rather than one of abundant offering? When I open up our fridge I begin rationing out the food out of fear that I will use up everything too quickly and be without. But what happens in my attempt to control and operate out of scarcity? Food spoils and goes rancid.   Could my attempt of control and mode...

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Learning to Live the Interruptions

In the last few weeks my heart has taken to skipping beats again. The lub dub lub dub that pounds faithfully hour after hour now has a new rhythm. Like a jump start, a thick thud lands in my chest, sometimes making me cough like someone has thumped their first against my sternum. I had tests done a couple years ago when this first started happening. Blood work, EKG’s and...

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When a Meal Is a Masterpiece

This year, I gave my husband the gift of an Italian cuisine cooking class at a local cooking school for his birthday. We spent the evening creating a meal of white bean tapenade smeared on crostini, porcini roasted beef, and bianco risotto cooked in saffron and vermouth. Together we sliced and diced vegetables for the radicchio fritelle, and quartered strawberries for the crowning glory of the meal, a mascarpone torte...

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The Story Worth Living

April showers bring May flowers, at least that's how it used to work. Around here the weather patterns seem to have shifted a bit since I was a young girl. This year we had an April snow shower that brought more snow than we saw all winter. A week later the April sunshine pushed the thermometer well past 80 degrees. But even with the crazy weather patterns, the day still came...

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One of the Most Offensive Things God Asks

Water splatters on my shirt as I scrub the last bits of garlic, tomatillos, and cilantro from the Cuisinart with intensity. The crunching sound of a key pushing into the lock pulls focus from the kitchen sink to the front door. I quickly turn off the flow and before I can dry soapy hands on a dishtowel, she walks into the house. Glowing. My daughter, Murielle, is home for a...

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The Art We Make at the Table

This is a story of two tables. The first is round. The wood is dark, and the square pedestal is cracked. We bought the table as newlyweds. We spent weeks hunting for chairs to match. The six chairs we found were always a little wobbly, but the warm, wood color was just right. It needed sixteen years, but we did, eventually, grow to fill those chairs. Jonathan and myself. Two...

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Art For The Heart

I can't keep up with the piles and stacks of her art that find their way to my night stand when I'm in the shower, or the ones she sets on the kitchen counter top in the middle of the mad-rush to get dinner on the table. She's always creating something, and always quick to give her art away.  We tell her repeatedly that she has a bent for it--that...

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The Crooked Path Towards Faith

In December 2006, I jumped into the River Cherwell, a river in Oxford, England, that crosses University Parks on the north side of town. It was the end of our study abroad semester and a few friends and I had the wild idea to jump off a low bridge into the water on one of our last days of class. We were twenty years old and had survived a semester...

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Storied Dishes

After we got engaged I couldn't wait to finally get to choose an everyday china pattern and register for gifts. (How in the world was that almost 30 years ago?) I didn't need to choose fine china; I had inherited my mother's Malden by Oxford, simple, rimmed in gold, and stunning. I'm one of those who believes kitchen art begins with pretty dishes. A spectacularly set table doesn't necessarily have to...

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