Today I cleaned out a drawer that should have been cleaned out two years ago.  It had all sorts of nails, screws, and misc hardware in it that we acquired when we moved into the house.  Sometimes I’m amazed at the level of ick I’m other people are willing to ignore!

So my method of dealing with this nasty drawer was to sort through all the metal type stuff and either throw it away or shove it in a can.  I happened to have a nice empty can on the counter waiting to go out to the recycling, which worked out perfectly.  After cleaning a while it dawned on me:  I’ve officially become my dad.


My dad was an awesome guy.  He was hardworking, always helping someone, loved God, and he thought I was awesome.  What more could you ask for in a dad?  He grew up in poverty and one of the things he learned was saving.  He saved everything. And I mean  Later in his life he had Alzheimer’s, so he saved even more things!   I remember sorting through some of his stuff and finding napkinsrandom ones, from restaurants, weddings, etc.

Anyways, in his workshop he had coffee cans.  Shelves full of coffee cans.  A few plastic jugs were also interspersed (with the tops cut off to enable more storage).  The cans and jugs were filled with screws, nails, and tons of other miscellaneous things.  One of his famous sayings (which eventually became a family joke) is when you’d ask to borrow something  he’d say he wasn’t sure where it was because he “put it up somewhere.”  This “put is up somewhere” phrase meant he had no clue where it was but he’d eventually find it, often long after you no longer needed it.  

When I saw my can filled with metal miscellany it hit me…he and I are definitely related.  

It’s an honor to be related to him.  I can pack a box, vehicle, suitcase, etc. like a champion.  I used to say my dad could pack an entire apartment into a pinto (the car, not the horse).  From him I received my love for people as well as my sense of humor; while the nature of my humor is different from Dad’s my humorous streak comes from his branch of my family tree (he loved practical jokes, where I have an affinity for sarcasm).  But I also inherited his ability to save.  and save.  and save.  Ridiculously random things that I’m sure will be needed someday.  (And they are needed just enough to reinforce the habit.)

However, I would like to point out an important distinction:  My can is not a coffee can.  It’s a panko crumb can.  A panko crumb can filled with crap miscellaneous important things is way cooler than a coffee can filled with crap miscellaneous important things.  So I’m totally different from my dad.  Definitely not a pack rat.  (And no, you do not need to ask my husband.)



So here’s to Dad.  I love you, miss you, and would give anything for a few more days with you.  And I am most definitely your girl.  🙂



Several years ago I developed a passion for bird watching.  It’s a simple thing I found to be really centering, so to speak.  I discovered bird watching was a way to find beauty anywhere because they are everywhere.  For example, it might seem like a dirty part of the city, but birds are still there.  An empty field…more birds.  Near my hometown there’s a wastewater treatment plant that is a great place to see unique types of birds!  Spotting a bird reminds me of the beauty God created.

This morning I went for a walk around the lake pond near our house and discovered a visitor.  I didn’t have a camera with me other than my phone (which is horrible for pictures), so I went back later with my 3 yo.


One of the awesome things about being a parent is introducing your child to the world.  Helping them discover is truly an amazing experience.  I don’t usually try to ‘bird watch’ with my kids around, other than in our yard, because kids generally don’t love to sit quietly.  Or walk quietly.  Especially if they see a pine cone.  or a bug.  or a stick.  or a leaf.  or anything else remotely interesting.  While this trait is absolutely fantastic, is doesn’t lend itself well to bird observation.  Okay, that’s not entirely true.  It does allow one to see how quickly birds can scatter and hide….

On our way to the lake my son and I had several discussions about being *quiet* so we wouldn’t scare the big white bird. I also gave him a pair of binoculars so he could study nature on his own.  I have to say, despite being three years old and generally loud, he did very well on our walk!  I was able to get a few pictures of this beauty:


American White Pelican


American White Pelican.
And turtles.



…until my sweet boy forgot to be quiet.  Here is the Pelican flying away.




So we looked at the turtles instead.


My fellow birdwatcher.




For as long as I can remember Fall has been my favorite season.  The smell of the fallen leaves (though not so much the raking), the colors on the trees, the cooler weather, apple cider, spice donuts, etc.  Plus hay rides, pumpkins, bondfires….bliss.

Moving South has definitely put a damper on the Fall season.  However, when we moved here I was thrilled to learn that there are many trees with colorful leaves.  Not as colorful as at home, but still beautiful!  (The bonus of Fall in the South is knowing winter isn’t that long and Spring will soon be just around the corner!)

Yesterday afternoon I had a chance to go for a walk, without children, and savor a little bit of Fall.







And turtles.  Okay, not so much a Fall picture, but I took it on my walk because it was cool to see.  Every log, stump, etc. sticking up out of the water on my route had a turtle on it, soaking up the Fall sunshine.  It was a beautiful day.



Happy Fall!!


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