Magical Memoir Moments

A Gift from the Memory Sea: A Moment Captured in Another Family’s Photo Album

Our neighbors the Martins lived less than a quarter mile away. Sometimes my brother and I rode our bikes down their long lane, hoping to play with the Martin children: Carol, Elaine, Danny and Davy. After I left home for college, I lost touch with the Martins. Carol’s younger sister Elaine came back into my…

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From the Underworld to the Woodcarver: The Power of Changed Metaphor

When I’m visiting the underworld and the way seems long and dark, I need a new metaphor. The wisdom of Parker Palmer often helps me.  As I struggled with mountains of memorabilia in the cellar last week, searching for inspiration while mildew and mold wafted in the air, I was thinking of Persephone, Demeter, Orpheus,…

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Entering the Underworld: Treasure, Moth, Rust, and Corruption

Last September I responded to the question, “Does Blush have a sequel?” with this blog post, selecting “the box in the basement” as my next project. That phrase was a metaphor, of course. I planned to comb through memorabilia, waiting to hear the gentle siren of the muse.  I underestimated the task. Instead of one…

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My Brother the Artist: Uniting Avocation and Vocation

My object in living is to unite My avocation and my vocation As my two eyes make one in sight. Only where love and need are one, And the work is play for mortal stakes, Is the deed ever really done For Heaven and the future’s sakes. –Robert Frost If you’ve read BLUSH, you met…

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Wedding Blessings Revive the Magical Memoir Moments of Childhood

Weddings produce Magical Memoir Moments by their very nature. They fill us with hope. Parents feel a special joy tinged with sadness. Mothers often weep inside as they embrace daughters. The most popular blog post I ever wrote shares the wedding blessings Stuart and I gave to Kate and Nik in 2010. We instinctively chose…

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Tina, Mary, me, Gloria. Graduation Day, 1970.

The Ultimate Touchstone of Friendship: Witness

Mary, Tina, and Gloria were the main characters in the mini memoir of my life called The College Years. Here we are about to graduate. Tina appears to have the stage. There were a few things we still didn’t know. 🙂 Like all graduates, we had no idea of where we would ultimately live, travel,…

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Graduation Day Eastern Mennonite College, 1970: Elvin Kraybill, me, Myron Augsburger, Conrad Brunk. Truman Brunk

Commencement: Go Where There Is No Path

 “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail,” –Ralph Waldo Emerson. Graduation Day 1970. I was nervous and excited. My friend Elvin and I were the student commencement speakers. We marched with the college president. After that day, we would not see each other…

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Spring Banquet 1967.

When the Lost Thing Appears: The Completion of a Circle

A month ago, I looked everywhere I could think of for Spring Banquet photos. Then last week, looking for a photo of our friend Joel, I found the two pictures that had eluded my search. Here is the date who found the corsage I lost. Sometimes when our minds are totally consumed by other thoughts,…

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Our Friend Joel’s Life Legacy: Eternal Laughter and Love

I had planned to write about graduation. Now it is otherwise. I had planned to enjoy a riotous old age with this man as friend. Now it is otherwise. Our friend Joel, cartoonist, script writer, story teller, died May 8. He was walking with his wife Nancy. The hidden clot in his lung grabbed him.…

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The Red, Red Rose of Memory: A Surprise Update

This rose is 48 years old. When it dropped from my shoulder in the dark, my date promised to come back the next morning and look for it. He found it along the path we walked on College Avenue. Why do I still have this rose? Because my “date” became my husband. And his trip…

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