Field Notes

 

How We Prepare Him Room

How We Prepare Him Room

Zipping my jacket to my chin, I picked up speed in hopes of generating more body heat. Before long it would be warm—possibly even hot—but that would be later. For now, the October sun hadn’t been up long enough to chase away the overnight chill. Earlier, when the...

Navigating by Faith When We’re Disoriented by Life

Navigating by Faith When We’re Disoriented by Life

At the switchback, I paused for a breath and surveyed the landscape. Interested as I was in the spruce and fir trees dotting Lamar Valley’s faded grass, what I really wanted was to see how far my husband and I had come so I could figure out know how much further I had...

Our Seasons Aren’t As Simple as They Seem

Our Seasons Aren’t As Simple as They Seem

Summer’s green is wearing thin. Before long, it will give way to the colors of autumn. Between the arrival of unrelenting heat and a steady green march across the lawn, some years it seems we go straight from winter to summer without stopping for spring. This doesn’t...

Gifts & Graces | Summer 2022

Gifts & Graces | Summer 2022

For more years than I care to admit, July 1 has settled in with a heavy sense of loss. Summer, I believed, was almost over. This is as unhelpful as it is untrue. How can a season that was born just days before be nearly at its end? Maturity is teaching me to take on...

Gifts and Graces | Spring 2022

Gifts and Graces | Spring 2022

One practice I use to keep me oriented to the features of the landscape of my life is to list the season's gifts and graces. It's a simple way to fix my eyes on the good so I can do my part to foster a hopeful perspective and healthy mindset. The list is intended to...

One Way We Find Our Way

One Way We Find Our Way

“This way, Babe.” Late the night before, my husband, J, and I had checked into a hotel in Nebraska. Now it was morning, time to resume our road trip. I stepped out of our room and turned to the right, which, apparently, was wrong. “Really?” I asked. I was sure this...

How We Build Strength for Tough Times

How We Build Strength for Tough Times

“It’s easier if you walk along the edge,” my husband said. We were taking on unfamiliar terrain. I knew how to hike the packed dirt trails in the midwest and the mountains. But in Utah’s high desert where my KEENS tossed up a spray of sand with every step? Not so...

Winter Gifts and Graces

Winter Gifts and Graces

Of the practices I use to foster a hopeful perspective and healthy mindset, keeping a list of the season's gifts and graces is the simplest. Somewhere along the line, I started rearranging it into a bell shape and now I can't really stop. This season's gathering of...

Now is Not the Time to Wait

Now is Not the Time to Wait

Every winter, I direct a troupe of middle and high school actors. From the very first year, there has always been that rehearsal. If you have ever worked with a group of kids, you know what I mean: mass distraction, constant talking, and management issues of all...

Gifts and Graces | Fall 2021

Gifts and Graces | Fall 2021

  I have a long history of believing the way it is today is the way it always will be. This is especially true when I find myself traveling tough terrain but it spills over into easy stretches, too. Maybe you can identify.  As a mindset, it doesn’t serve well. It...

Choosing an Adventurous Life

Choosing an Adventurous Life

Two Octobers ago, I paused on the bank of the Gardner River and wondered just exactly why I would choose to be standing there in a swimsuit in twelve-degree air. We’d been there before–at least, my husband, two older kids, and I had. At that particular stretch of the...

How to Guard Your Heart

How to Guard Your Heart

A long, long time ago—forty years last month—my parents took my little brother and me to Yellowstone. If you’ve read around here long, you know my life has never been the same. (Thank you, Mom and Dad.) One of the sights I most remember from that first visit is...