How to be broken.

You hold everything in, believing the lies you had to tell yourself to stay quiet and silent for so long, so you could cope with the weight of your heaviness.

You carry it, mostly alone. You can let someone else in, one at a time, wrecklessly. And spray paint your story across all kinds of relationships in the hope that someone sees the entire thing so they can tell you what it really means.

You hold on to all their words about you. Turning them over until they become the recipe for your survival. You are thirsty. This is your living water.

Then you stop.

You might be sick. You might be weak. You might be running and fighting and surviving but never thriving. You are on borrowed time.

You know this. You can see your shadow and you’re terrified of her. She has been waiting for you, she wants you to come home to her.

You keep going. You aren’t giving up. Not now, not when you’ve worked this hard to be this afraid. These wounds are now your proof of life. You’ve come this far, no way in hell you’re turning this ship around.

But then, she breaks you. In the middle of all the noise, she gets louder. She’s come for you. It’s time.

You tear wide open, unzipping yourself from before; you sing her song of desperation and let her tell you what to do next. She demands the one thing you’ve been keeping secret. How you’ve been reading lines for this very moment, casting yourself as the understudy for years while no one was really paying attention:

She says … “Remember.”

And then you do.

When the leaves start to turn

Here’s how I want to talk about things from now on:

Like we mean it.

Like there’s something bubbling on the stove, resting in the oven, growing in the garden. Like we have purpose and patience. I want to hear you cry after you’ve burst yourself wide open in laughter, I want to see you savor what it feels like to hear the waves.

I want to be a people who gather when there’s a harvest and sit when there’s a wake. Fall does this to me, so does rain. When my little charges scatter and it’s down to me and the pantry and the bruised pages of my favorite cookbooks, and coffee. I want so much more for you and me, for us. To be together, but like, really together. I want to get drunk on knowing this will never end.

Weekend up north with Penelope

Homemade donuts

Night 1, Day 2 of Summer Road Trip West

Randomly stopping on the side of the road to photograph fields of kale 👌#jodiandpenroadtrip

Pan-fried Polenta with runny eggs and tomato jam.

Deep Lake Campground

Weekend up north with Penelope

Platte River Campground, Fall 2016

Remind me of this when I forget, which might be often. Or just every January.

I want you to be ridiculous. I want you to say YES to the weird stuff. You’re not having any fun? Change that. We can absolutely be sojourners on this ride, and we can be missionaries to our neighbors – or we can pack up everything and move across the pond. Let’s do it all. Let’s not wait another day to start living. Your bank account might never be wide enough for the dreams you can dream but may your heart always be strong enough for the weight it will carry.

You can’t afford a trip to Europe? Do you know someone who’s been? Invite them over to tell their stories and ask to see their photographs. Make food you might taste over there and drink the drinks you envision yourself having. Sit outside in a garden. Call the visitors bureau and ask them about the city. If you can’t call: research, here I’ve done some for you … Travel ideas for Italy. Pinterest is a thing: use it.

Streets of Madrid

Go there, do it. Even if you can’t literally go any where. Enlist help from someone who loves hosting, ask them to show you or help you, invite friends (new and old) to enjoy a night on the canals.

You don’t have to own a boat, rent one; it doesn’t even have to have a motor. Or you can ask a friend or family member who owns one. Buy the hat for the captain, sit down, play the music, and watch the landscape pass-by as if you’re in Italy. DO IT. Why not?

Fathers Day 2015

When you feel ridiculous you should always have weird looks and stares from those around you who can’t see the beauty of dreaming just yet. They will soon, keep going. When they ask “why” your answer is always at the ready … “why not?!”

Dreaming isn’t an idea that you never realize. Dreaming is the opposite of fantasy, it’s your reality waiting to happen.

It won’t give you permission and the first step into Ridiculous is chilly. You might feel foolish and childish. You might fain mocking from the crowds but here’s a secret: they all wish they could wade into this water too. So keep going. Start swimming.

Lakeshore, showing them the beach

They will know who I am by your love for each other. (Paraphrased from John 13:35) Love is so many, many things. Mowing someone’s lawn, visiting the sick in your hospitals, making meals for young mothers, lending your hands, giving to causes with time, money or talent. But love isn’t a chore. Love is also being first in line at the roller coaster with your wide-eyed 9 year old for the first coaster ride of their life. It’s the sheer volume of happiness they eek out as you ascend and then rip down the rafters. Love is showing up to the dance recitals and hosting the sleepovers, it’s making the pancakes or warming up leftovers. Love is beneath the sheets, but also in the backyard. It’s touching your loved ones gently and ushering them closer for an embrace. It’s always an offering, never an obligation.

You guys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love is the high five and the posters on the sidelines when your people run the race they never thought they could finish. It’s the Holiday dinners and traditions for some of us, it’s the stockings and wrapping paper for others. It can be too much and not enough all at once. Love is overwhelming, like standing in a field of wild poppies for the first time and noticing that if you had never taken the wrong turn you would have gone the rest of your life not knowing that this existed. And it would continue to exist, without your permission or need for interference whatsoever. It’s there because the seed was planted and the clouds broke open and sang them into the air, a duet with the sun. It’s there, we just have to see it.


Love is so contagious. Be ridiculous. And then pass it on.

well drained soil: full sun

Winter is the hardest season for me. Because it covers the promise of New with a blanket of white forgetfulness and then March happens and everything is brown but the air is green.

April and September are my favorite months, each bringing with it the culmination of my favorite things; Dreams and Realities.

Every April I plant new flowers and plan a garden to feed my family and care for soil and bring dirt into my house because I can. I wash my feet in the rain and soak in the sunshine. And I buy charcoal to taste the smoke. I drink wide brimmed glasses full of flavor and smell the intoxicating promise of summer.

The children play outside and go to sleep easy, we all work hard but play harder and splash in the memories of what we can do here. I want to build things, like a home, but I want to travel, like a merciless vagabond, and homeschool my children and eat all my meals with only my fingers and write wild poetry like a drunk under the stars.

I want to taste this life. To live this messy life wild. Wearing a garden on my arm and dreads in my hair – I want to escape the everyday and discover my tomorrow.

An archeologist of my own time here, I want to unearth all the fossils.