Live Interrupted

13 posts
The Table Of Suffering

She lost her baby that fall. It was early in the pregnancy, but there had already been celebrations and joy at the positive test. Then there was blood and aching and sorrows that sliced them open. Our baby came two months later, the little girl we were planning to adopt. And it was too early. Way too early. I sat in a NICU holding her impossibly small hand and praying...

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Rest and Ratatouille

In summer, metaphors are as plentiful as buzzing bees. Here is one with its nose buried in a hollyhock. Here are half a dozen more darting among the clover. Summer is a gradual unspooling, and I see the picture of it everywhere: rosebuds unfurling, pea vines and morning glories curling and uncurling. Summer is for slowly, but surely, unclenching our fists, letting our hurried shoulders drop, and leaning in toward...

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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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The Bountiful Feast

“Is anyone joining us tonight?” she asks as she counts the plates for dinner. The fact that she doesn’t know this answer points to the varying numbers that gather around our little faux wood dining set. “Just us tonight,” I say, and flip another tortilla in the cast iron pan. There’s a stack of 15 tortillas on the plate and I’ve rolled out the last one. We won’t eat 16...

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Slow Chewing And Small Sips: The Beauty Of Small Gifts

I have missed more than one rich moment to view life through a wild kaleidoscope lens, to experience beauty, wonder and awe, to play hostess to the fragrant details of the world. To slow chew, sip, and savor goodness. I have been my own worst enemy. I’ve stuffed the invitation, the one which says “come be dazzled” and “come live lavishly”. The gentle pastel watercolor invitation tossed onto a stack...

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New In Town

I realized I’d never find the salad tongs. Surrounded by boxes, I flung the thin white paper we’d used to pack our dishes across the kitchen, digging into every tight corner of cardboard to find the missing utensils. This was to be the first night serving dinner on real plates since we’d moved after two weeks of only paper and plastic. I’d bought new taper candles and arranged a fresh...

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In the Habit of Hospitality

I am allergic to goals and averse to resolutions. I love to dream, but I prefer my dreams in rosy shades of vague. Details and action plans make me tired. Oh, January. Oh, month of optimism and ambition. I love you. But I do not trust you. * Or, perhaps, I do not trust myself. For though I am no setter of goals, I, too, long to turn over that...

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Invisible Hospitality And An End-of-Summer Cake

Ten years ago, she confessed to me that hospitality wasn’t for her. The tasks that brought me life brought her only unbearable stress. She sloughed off a burden of expectation that wasn’t hers to bear. She said no to hosting friends for dinner and said yes to so many other good things. * Today, that same friend is mom to a houseful of kids. They arrived through birth and adoption...

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Practicing Spontaneous Hospitality

My plan was to run into and out of Goodwill. I was searching for mid-century barware. The thought of finding it as a gift for my husband had my hunter-gatherer adrenaline rushing. As I stepped out of my car, a woman approached me from behind. After I recovered from being startled, I realized she wanted to note that she and I were driving the same model, year and color Subaru....

9 4
What Hospitality Looks Like in a Castle

As a writer, I abhor a cliché, and I am no fan of idioms and proverbs. I prefer my words fresh and perhaps a little startling. I like words that wake us up and rattle our usual ways of thinking and seeing. We say if these walls could talk, but what if the creaky floorboards have more important things to declare? We say a man’s home is his castle, but...

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