Love is all you need

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

It’s Ash Wednesday, too, the beginning of Lent. Interestingly enough, the three pillars of Lent all relate to love relationships.

Prayer: strengthens your relationship with God and helps you to focus on how you can serve God through serving others.

Fasting: involves your relationship with yourself, as it helps you turn from selfish habits and things that disturb your inner peace.

Almsgiving: (not, as autocorrect wanted it to be, “skydiving”) lets you reach out and build relationships with others in need, whether they need something tangible, like food or shelter, or just need our compassion, concern, or forgiveness.

I love Lent. I don’t always do very well at those three important parts, but even making the effort makes a difference. It’s like a spring cleaning for your heart, a chance to look at whether you have been relating to God, to yourself, and to other people in the most loving way possible.

Some say that these three practices are like the three legs of a stool. I’m cool with making it a chair and adding skydiving back in.

Fry Day (I’m in love)

In addition to all the other consequences of Quinland being gone (an empty space in our little family, a lonely dog, and a lot less laundry), I was really missing all of Q’s friends. Some had gone away to college, some are going to school here in Portland, others are still in high school, but without Quinland to pull them into our orbit, I was afraid we’d lose touch.

You see, we have been blessed to have a huge bunch of young people in our lives — and our home — over the years. These kids are amazing. They are smart and kind and funny and thoughtful and loud and creative and just basically awesome. However, they are getting a little too old to be called “kids,” so I decided they needed a new name.

The term kid comes, of course, from young goats, so I decided we needed another baby-animal name. Puppies? Kittens? Lambs? (Picture me as an elderly British woman.) These all seemed too babyish. Cubs? Calves? Goslings? No, no, no… Then I remembered when we raised salmon in my classroom back in days of yore. The eggs hatch into creepy-looking alevin, and then develop into little fry. That was it! Same meaning, but without the same juvenile connotation. (And besides, this is the Pacific Northwest! We love salmon!) Although Quinland might have preferred joeys, the Young People I Love are now officially called Fry. Continue reading “Fry Day (I’m in love)”

Senior portraits- Class of 2017

My incredible child just finished his last year of high school. Avid photographer that he is, he took some senior portraits for a couple of friends that turned out really well.  For example, here’s Colin:

The top left is my favorite; Colin chose the bottom right one for the yearbook. Photos by Quinland; lack of high-quality resolution by me.

And here is Quinland himself: Continue reading “Senior portraits- Class of 2017”