Saturday, March 6, 2021


This is the story of love, embodied in generosity.

When Lee and I got married, we received three exquisite crystal bowls as gifts.  
If you know us, fancy is probably the last word you would use to describe us, and formal right next to it. 
When we received these bowls, which were nowhere on our registry, we felt treasured.

This bowl was given to us by a couple who helped me grow up. They were our neighbors, and some of my parents' dearest friends.  My mom worked with the wife eventually, and the support they gave all of us over the years was indispensable. I can just picture her going out of her way to find something special enough for us.  They were always lavish in their love for us and others.

This bowl came from an older couple from our church.  They were a classy pair.  Not long before our wedding, she had been moved to memory care, after he spent several very challenging years caring for her by himself.  He could have ignored our wedding invitation altogether.  He could have called the store with our gift registry and said pick something for x amount, put it on my card and send it.  But he went and picked out this beautiful bowl, honoring his wife's impeccable taste, and demonstrating for us the meaning of "to love, honor and cherish, 'til death do us part".  She would have been so proud of him, and probably as grateful as we were.

This bowl came from my sister and her family.  She knows my style--we are as likely as not to be dressed pretty much alike when we get together.  And she loves to make delicious food, so it should be served in something worthy.  And worthy it is!  She shares all the good recipes so I can make the good food too.  She's taught me so much about hospitality.

These beautiful treasures have been in my china cabinet for almost twenty years, along with some others.  I loved looking at them often.  But the china cabinet was big and we wanted to use the space differently.  So I made some art to put on the wall where it had been.  It's so nice to be able to still enjoy my bowls there.  They've made a lasting impression.  Just like the people who gave them to us.

"And now these things remain: faith, hope and love.  But the greatest of these is love." 
1 Corinthians 13:13

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

The Dress

What does a photographer do when it occurs to her 
that she barely remembers what her wedding dress looked like?

She goes across town to the loveliest place she can think of 
to pull it out of the garment bag, and study it with her camera.

Here is the story of that dress.

Not so long ago, our nest emptied as our kids left for college.  It was time to get a handle on all the stuff that had accumulated while life was happening.  We dubbed the project "Hindsight 2020", with a goal of putting the things that were weighing us down in our rear view mirror, so to speak.  A book that I read took a novel approach--encouraging us to focus on unearthing our treasures and restore them to their proper place of prominence and usefulness.  To do that, we needed to shed the things that were getting in the way.

In the process of going through our belongings, my wedding dress kept surfacing.  For a long time I'd been watching for ways to upcycle it, or possibly donate it.  But you know what I hadn't done?  I hadn't looked at it.

Lee and I got engaged in March, and were married in June.  It was exactly the way we wanted it.  A minimum of time to fuss and stress, and then married life began.  We loved everything about our wedding--the people, the church, the music, the pastor, the hors d'oeuvres reception.  But in the flurry of that beautiful time in our life, the details of my dress were lost on me.  I remember that I literally went to one store, chose a dress that I was completely happy with, that my mom also liked and was a good deal, and that was it.  It wasn't like I had time to scour the universe for "the perfect dress". 

In my memory, my wedding dress was a beautiful thing to wear to meet my groom at the altar and become his wife.  Part of the frosting on the cake of getting married.  But when I took it out it took my breath away.  Because actually, it was the perfect dress.  I know this now.  

It wouldn't have seemed right to do this little project without my groom.  I didn't fully know what a gem I was getting with him either.  I'm still discovering.  I can let go of the dress when the right moment presents itself, now that I have the photos.  But he's a keeper.  I *still* do.

Stunning backdrops courtesy of the amazing Bavaria Downs!