On sunrises:  This morning as I was standing at my kitchen sink and looking outside I caught a glimpse of a beautiful sunrise.  Between the bare tree branches, were the colors of pink and orange as the sun made its way up in the sky.  It was the kind of sunrise that forces you to stop and take a second look.  In that moment, my heart lifted and I thanked God for the beautiful sunrise.

On safe travel:  Yesterday my parents returned home after living in Israel for the past four months.  I have their phone numbers on speed dial in my cell phone and it felt good after so many months of not using the preset buttons to push “their” number and to hear their voices so clearly.  Even though I skyped several times with them and we talked on the phone while they were away, I still had to deal with slow connections and static on the line.  This time, however, their voices felt close, and I was glad to have them back in the states.  I am looking forward to our upcoming journey north and spending time together.

On unexpected family moments:  Last night our family huddled together on the couch to stream this past Sunday’s episode of The Amazing Race.  This is the first time our family has followed this show and we only began watching the show recently.  Somehow it has become a family tradition in recent weeks, and now that the show is heading into its final episode we didn’t want to miss an episode.  Because of another event on Sunday evening that prevented us from watching the show, we had to stream the show on my laptop.  There aren’t too many occasions that require all four of us to gather on one couch these days.  I was struck by the contrast of just a few years ago when Brad and I would read to them on our laps.  We could all easily cuddle together on the couch.  Last night reminded me that these times are fewer and fewer as Jacob and Anna grow.  On one side of me was my growing fourteen year old with his long legs and deep voice.  On the other side of me was my eleven year old daughter who is becoming a young lady.  They both had just showered and smelled good which is worth noting when so often I find myself saying, “Put on some deodorant!”  They no longer fit in my arms so I am especially grateful for moments like last night that force us all to be close and cozy.

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