I never wanted to work in the fast food industry. I had been pretty good at getting cashier jobs at stores when I needed income when I was younger. At the time, I had a job doing work-study at the college I was attending. It helped, but I needed a little more to cover other […]

Bruised Apples

The air was muggy and damp as we walked along the dirt path surrounded by trees. I walked with a small cohort of pre-teen and early teenage girls, presumably of whom I was in charge. As one of the youngest adult women at our tiny church, I had been asked to accompany them to the […]


I laid in my bed in the dark, in the early morning hours. Without even opening my eyes I could tell that it was not quite light enough for the sun to have risen. There was no chirping of birds or sounds of traffic. It was simply the quiet nothing that surrounded me in a […]

Mr. Paul and the Pumpkin Fudge

For many years we attended First Lutheran Church. We definitely met people there who we loved and enjoyed spending time with. I probably didn’t connect as well as I could have with many during that time. I was one of those church members with several small children in tow. That experience can be its own […]

Chasing Tomatoes

In the summer of 2002, I was fresh out of college with my bachelor’s degree. I was working a full-time job at a local non-profit during the day. Steven was working second shift at Virco, full-time.  Alex was just a couple months shy of being two years old.  We decided to try working opposite shifts […]


The car had been acting up for several days. Why was it that once you paid off a vehicle, it started having problems? It seemed like every other month some crucial part needed replacing. As a couple of young married college students, working and going to school and struggling, the car stuff added a layer […]


“Mom, have you ever had beets?” Oliver asked me one day while I was standing in the kitchen.  I eyed him curiously, as he stood there with a thoughtful look on his face. “Yes, I have” I answered him neutrally. “Did you like them? Because I want to try them!” he said excitedly. I didn’t […]

Kitchen S’mores

One of the most important skills I’ve ever developed as a parent is the ability to make S’mores in the kitchen. The S’mores came about as a coping mechanism. I don’t have special memories from childhood attached to the delicacy. Oh sure, we would roast marshmallows on sticks over the fire camping, but our finances […]


The gentle tones of somber music drew me into the room where the others were gathered. A collection of soft liturgical melodies gently floated on the air. The man in charge spoke somberly and decisively to the others assisting him for the service. “That goes over here!” He said, pointing to the casket. He directed […]


When a human being experiences trauma and has no way to safely handle the stress of it, the trauma bounces around inside them. It causes damage like a bullet that ricochets around with no exit, tearing flesh and wounding with every movement.  Sometimes those who experience this exercise the trauma in an uncontainable explosion of […]