Twenty Years

The connection was cosmic. It was as though God had specifically designed us for each other. Maybe He did. We loved every bit of each other, and accepted each other’s imperfections.
My baggage we more obvious than yours. I carried it proudly on my back like an over prepared hiker headed for a long journey. You tried to carry it for me, I was stingy. You offered to help me let go of the unnecessary, I insisted I needed it. You patiently waited, walked beside me while I whined about how heavy my load was, and allowed me to decide when to put it down.
Children were born. We found ourselves blind and wandering in a land between what we were told to be and what we felt we were created to be. We made mistakes with our kids and with our friends and with each other. We learned forgiveness. We experienced grace. We begin to practice mercy.
Twenty years have passed. We sit on the front porch, coffee in hand, and watch the fog roll away off the fields as the sun rises. We turned our lives upside down, traded it all in for a new life in an old place. A place where we could start again, a ‘take-two’ on the scene, where we live loyal to our God and His plan.
{This post is a participation in Daily Post’s daily prompt. Today’s prompt can be found hereIn keeping with my goal of writing 15 minutes each day, I have only allowed myself 15 minutes of free writing. }

Just try

I always wanted to try.
I couldn’t stay after school.
It wasn’t a class that led to a profitable career.
I should have started in high school, so it’s too late now.
I should have done it in college, so it’s really too late now.
My daughter always wanted to try.
She’s a homeschooler, not many options around.
*keeps looking*
I’ll give it one last try, in this new town, maybe someone will let her try here.
In a blink, we both tried. Clueless, and terrified, we tried. Way beyond our comfort zone, we tried.
Man, let me just say, it’s everything I always wanted it to be.

*images from 246 The Main, community theater in Brookneal, VA. Hunchback of Notre Dame and Catch Me If You Can.

A shirtless boy

beginningWe gathered our hammocks, books, collection jars, paints, cameras, and snacks. This beautiful Sunday afternoon was going to be spent relaxing down by the creek, deep in the woods. The men folk had already begun cleaning up the path. Papa and Grandma were now able to ride the golf cart down to meet us with bottles of water, a rescue of sorts when we all realized we had packed everything but drinks.
The creek area was still very raw. Fallen limbs and saplings cluttering up our space. Clean up for around the creek was in the plans, just not today.We cleared what we needed to in order to hang out in the trees. David and I stretched out in our respective cocoons, listening to the children play.
The eldest sat upstream, where the dog had yet to stir up the water, and painted. The next oldest went downstream, where the water was a bit deeper and chased frogs and salamanders.

The youngest daughter stood in the shallow, muddy bits, digger her bare toes into the muck, thrilled that the 72 degrees meant she could leave her shoes on the bank. Little man kept watch for wild creatures. He walked logs and chased frogs. He made regular trips back to Momma’s hammock to make sure I was okay.

It was almost hot outside. Way too hot to be February. The sun was so delightfully warm that I had shed one of my layers of shirts, allowing my bare arms to soak in the suns rays. The brightness of my book pages almost making it difficult to read.
I was snuggled so deep into my hammock, deep into my book that I didn’t notice the small but thick cloud that was creeping ever so slowing between us and the sun. The small breeze, that had been a pleasant sensation in contrast to the sunshine’s warmth, quickly turned into a biting chill that left me longing for a sweater. I pulled my recently removed shirt up over my chest and arms, and made jokes with David about how quickly the weather had turned. As David was assuring me that it was a small cloud and my warmth would return quickly, a small t-shirt appeared over the edge of my hammock.
“Here Momma, to keep you warm.”
I peeked over the edge to see my sweet boy standing there, shirtless.

Five Minutes Over Coffee: writing prompts

5 Minutes Over Coffee: 3rd Grade

All my drafts require deep thought and more than five minutes.
All I had this morning was five minutes.
So, I asked a writer friend of mine for a journal prompt. She quickly replied “3rd grade”.
So here goes…
The third grade was the year I earned my first trip to the principal’s office.
No, I was not the one in trouble.
I should probably explain that in the 3rd grade, we didn’t have individual desks. They were big tables, for two, pushed together so four kids sat facing each other. Looking back, they were set up in a wonky kind of fashion. I know this is a writing prompt, but I had to write it out really quick. X’s are other kids, D and P and Me are the kids being discussed today.
Well, stickers were the thing back then. If you aren’t old enough to remember how very, very important stickers and stickers books were, then you’ll just have to trust me. Stickers, and how many you had in your very important, very cool sticker book, was a thing. It was one thing to have plain stickers, but to have scratch-n-sniffs, or holographic…. now, that was cool. But few things out ranked a super cool Puffy Sticker. Oh yea, puffy stickers were traded like crack in my elementary school.
Now, this kid Paul (P on the diagram), had recently become the owner of a SHEET of puffy stickers. He was willing to share, or trade. Sounds awesome, right?
When you pair it with his knowledge that I had a crush on David (D, the boy sitting next to me), it becomes less awesome. See, Paul wasn’t willing to trade with me for a sticker. He wanted me to do something. Something vile. Something no third grader should ever be asked to do.
He told me that if I wanted a sticker, I had to…..touch….David’s…..elbow.
I wanted to die! I mean, I couldn’t just touch his elbow!!
The teacher saw me getting upset, and tearing up.  She asked me what was wrong, but I didn’t want to tell her. I mean, I didn’t want to get Paul in trouble. I didn’t want David to know what Paul had asked me to do. I didn’t want David to think I didn’t want to touch his elbow. I didn’t want David to think I did want to touch his elbow.
She invited me into the hallway, where I spilled my guts. We all ended up in the principal’s office and we all ended up with a nice long lecture on how we shouldn’t try to coerce other people into touching other people’s anythings, ever.
Not even elbows.
I never did get that puffy sticker.
-Just Lisa
P.S. If you’d like to participate in Five Minutes Over Coffee, just snag that graphic and leave me a link in the comments. I’ll share it on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #5minCoffee