THE GREAT ENLIVENING

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I’ve never actually made gumbo, which as an LSU graduate and the daughter of two Louisiana-born natives is embarrassing to admit and liable to have my “Cajun card” in question. That’s why when my parents came to visit, I figured it was the perfect time to learn. Not to mention a great opportunity to introduce a little Cajun culture to some of our new friends in Mexico. While Natalie and I have met… Read More

“Just a little bit farther…” Hannah says as she grabs my foot and places it in my hand. I feel all of my muscles stretching deeply from my shoulder through my hip; and my heart starts to pound. I’m not so sure that my body was meant to bend this way. My peripheral vision is getting a little sparkly, so I take a deep breath and remind myself that I am thankful… Read More

At 5’7” I’m slightly above the average height of women in America. In Mexico, I’m practically an amazon. A white giant among a dark-skinned population of people who are well…for the most part, fairly petite. This is especially obvious to me when I’m at the gym. And by gym, I mean a single room that is no more than 20 feet wide by 30 feet long. There are no weights or machines…. Read More

Street signs. Yeah, they don’t exist in Mexico. At least not with much frequency or consistency. Which poses a small problem when you don’t have GPS, a data plan on your phone that allows you to use Google maps and you’re trying to find a place you’ve never been. Such was the case when Natalie and I ventured out for church on Sunday morning. We did our homework, and found the only… Read More

Dear friends and family, To those near and far, We’re sending our love To wherever you are! May today be a day Where pleasures abound. May you drink in the sights, the smells, and the sounds. May your turkey be stuffed, And your cranberry jellied. May you smile and embrace The fullest of bellies. May your visits be filled With love and with truth, And when it’s all over, May your journeys be… Read More

He’s just standing there on the edge of the cliff, about forty feet above the crashing waves, staring majestically off into the horizon. His slender grey body and long legs are so delicate that your eye could easily miss him, but he’s so close to me I can see every detail. He’s a handsome crane, although I’m not exactly sure what he’s doing here, since I thought that they were fresh water… Read More

He is gangly, unkempt and expressionless. Over a camouflaged jacket are slung a few bags, carrying what I imagine is everything he owns. I’ve seen a lot of homeless people in the 24 hours I’ve been in San Francisco and each time my heart aches a little. Over the years I’ve met, given money to, prayed with and befriended several people in the same position. I think of Eric, Deocito and countless… Read More

“Hmm, that’s weird… the gas light is on again,” I mumble to myself. I just filled up the tank two hours ago, and I’ve only driven about 250 miles. Normally a tank will last for at least 350 miles before the light comes on. I guess I’ll pull off at the next exit and fill up again. I’m driving by myself from Tucson to San Diego today. Rachel decided to stay in… Read More

Screeeeeech…screeeeeech…screeeeeech. The sound of the swing is annoying but I don’t stop. I’m a good 75 to 100 lbs heavier and 25 to 30 years older than the average playground user but just as thrilled as any kid to be at this park. It’s a cloudless, 75-degree Fall day in Tucson, Arizona and I can’t help but marvel at the magnificent mountain view just in the distance. I’ve assessed the swing set… Read More

I took a few steps back and surveyed the mountain of bags, boxes and baskets that filled the driveway. “There’s no way we have this much stuff…” I muttered to myself. The sheer volume of things made it look like we packed provisions for an Army. There were water filters, cooking supplies, bags of condiments, a box of wine, beach towels and clothes… so many clothes. Today is day one of our… Read More