A Letter to Women on International Women's Day

Dear Women,

Happy Women’s Day! I don’t think that was a thing when I was growing up, but I’m just fine with it coming on the scene now. I like the opportunity to remind my daughter she’s strong and brave and kind and badass (I haven’t used that word out loud with her yet, but you bet I’m thinking it). I like the opportunity to reflect on my own strength and bravery and kindness and badassness (my computer is saying that’s not a word, but my computer is wrong). And I really, really like the opportunity to spend an entire day seeing women supporting each other and reminding each other how strong and brave and kind they are. Women are badass. I was pushing our gargantuan stroller up a very steep hill today and a woman yelled across the street to me, “Hey Mama! Happy Women’s Day!” She had a huge smile and pumped her fist in the air when she said it. I loved it, yelled back, “You too!” and pushed the stroller a little harder.

So yeah, I’m on board with a day to celebrate women.

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The Heaviness of Light Things

The snow in Bozeman this year has been nothing short of magical. It dances to the ground almost daily and with no wind and freezing temperatures it has settled comfortably in the valley. Hay bales have thick white blankets and bare trees sparkle like a small child dipped their branches in glue and then dunked them in glitter. Every so often a small amount will fall from a tree or rooftop and if the sun catches it just right you could mistake yourself for being inside a snow globe.

I have driven past these four trees a few times this week. The branches are heavy with something light and beautiful. They look impressive carrying so much snow, sparkling in the sun and beckoning photographers to capture their strength.

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Children, Children, What Do You See?

The line is a familiar one if you’re a parent or a teacher. It’s from a sweet book about a brown bear and purple cat and yellow duck and a blue horse. It has singsong phrasing and can be memorized after only a couple readings. Yesterday I pulled it out to read with my 4-month-old before his afternoon nap. He was cooing on my lap as I read the question about each animal, Brown bear, brown bear what do you see? and so on. But that last question caught in my throat. My mind was not on the book filled with colorful animals and creative pictures. It was instead on our world filled with hurting people and hateful ideologies.

Children, children, what do you see?

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The Storm

The sky was emotional on that early July night last year. Like a mirror for my day.

The great expanse started calm and peaceful, content with its place. Visiting family back home in Montana, I started my day with a pedicure with my cousin and we caught up on life and love, teaching and moving.

Then the sky wanted to show off a bit. The sun turned more and more vibrant as it dipped over the mountains, leaving behind clouds tinged in pink against a purple-red sky. After getting my toes painted, I spent the rest of my day family hopping. My three-year-old daughter learned to play golf with her grandparents; she ran with bare feet through the grass with her cousins; we checked out the new brewery and listened to local music with our parents; and we made plans to go hiking the next day with my brother.

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Home is Where the Adventure Is

Our deadline is quickly approaching. The expiration date we hastily scribbled on this adventure is just around the corner. We promised ourselves three years. Three years in New York City, and then we would reevaluate. If I’m honest, there were moments before we arrived that I didn’t even think we would last one full year.

Yet here we are – approaching three years with a renewed lease on our apartment, a child enrolled in Kindergarten, a career with roots, friends who easily became family, and a church we are certain we are called to grow with and help grow. And for me? Well, there are stories hovering in the air of this city just waiting to be written.

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