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The power of “You are welcome.”

Recently I texted "You're welcome" to a friend, who had thanked me for two simple things I did. A magazine I gave her and a conversation I had with her son, who is the same age and temperament as my son.

Writing books from my Facebook Writing Friends

I presented a seminar at Urbana18 this year, on The Beautiful Intersection of Faith and Writing (writers can't have normal titles for their writing workshops). In preparation I asked for suggested writing books from my Facebook writing buddies. I asked. They answered.

Trust and Enjoy. And a book.

During the first week of my master's studies, away from home and back in Halifax, I called Brent more than once, speaking in my weary, weepy, wavering voice.

Surprises

A few weekends ago, two of the kids and I drove from Ottawa to Malagash where my parents live, for a surprise birthday party for my mom, who turns 80 in January. There were so many surprises.

Three lovely moments

I have been thinking lately that life can be very pleasant, if you count up all the lovely moments. So, here are three of my recent ones that have stayed with me, cheering me up and along.

Remembering Eugene Peterson, and his wonderful wife Jan

Years ago, my husband Brent and I moved to Vancouver so he could do a Master of Divinity at Regent College. I think I can say, although others might disagree, that it was a heyday for Regent.

Writing personal essays

Personal experience and writing skill engage in a warm embrace in the personal essay. They need each other and they know it. In the personal essay the writer carefully and prayerfully chooses to bare their soul to the reader, offering up some of their most ordinary, tender and difficult experiences to the world as a gift.

Holly is 20

The other day I sat in church, two pews back from a young couple with a little girl who has sprouted up in recent weeks, like a tulip. She moved away from their pew, exploring the stand up fan that offered some relief on that muggy, hot Sunday.

Wendy sent me two whole pies

I remembered this week one of the nicest things that happened to me last year. Two writing friends sent me pies. Belinda made them. Wendy paid for them. I remembered this because Wendy Nelles died last week, very young in her early 60s.

60 000 words and counting

From the moment a fellow student tapped me on my shoulder at the welcome barbecue to tell me I had my shirt on backward, I knew I was in over my head.  Nevertheless, this week I graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Non-Fiction from the University of King's College.

My friend, the Artist

It's been a few times now that I've witnessed my friend Patty create beautiful art rather quickly, and unexpectedly, and in front of a room full of people. And every single time there is a moment I have to turn away because I think she is wrecking her own creation.

Writing home

I was a little girl in glasses who would walk home after school without ever looking up. I knew exactly where I was going. My feet knew the way.

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