Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Dear Blog,

I have missed you. I probably think about you everyday...and there are so many things that I long to share with you. But I must confess, it is really hard to face you. It's nothing you should take personally. It's just that you remind me of a season in my life that has come to a close. You see, right now, I'm back in the in-between...and as of right now, I really really REALLY hate the in-betweenness. It's uncomfortable. It's overwhelming. It's calling forth the birth of something knew. Labor sucks. And it's beautiful. It's painful. And it's a miracle. It's messy. And it's transformative.

When I was approaching my due date during my pregnancy with Faith I remember thinking, "I don't care how painful or how long the labor will be...I'm ready to endure it because I long so desperately to greet this precious life that's been dwelling in my belly." When I was actually in labor, vomiting and shivering from the shock my body succumbed to, I remember yelling, "I don't want to do this...it hurts too bad. I don't care what comes next...this hurts too bad."

That pretty much sums up how I feel right now. It hurts too bad. But there remains that still small voice reminding me of the life that just might burst forth if I endure these labor pains.

So, to you blog, I will try to return, though you make my heart feel the necessary contractions.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Ireland in a nutshell...

Yikes! I have 17 minutes to spit out this long overdue post about our trip to Ireland before I have to go retrieve my lil' ladies from school. I thought I'd share about this amazing experience using a few photos...so here are just a few of my favorites! Oh...and just to prepare you, the few readers I still have, these photos have not been edited and were taken by our pathetic point-and-shoot camera...so don't judge.

The Cliffs of Moher...perhaps one of the most famous natural sites in all of Ireland. The fog was so thick that morning that we could barely see the outline of the cliffs. I focused on the experience of my other senses instead...taking in the smells and sounds in particular and trying to appreciate the feeling of the mist upon my face (that of course reminded me of Seattle). At the very end of our time at the Cliffs the fog clouds lifted for only a moment and we were able to quickly snap a couple of decent shots.

We were in Dublin for most of the trip, but we ventured out into other regions of the country as well and stayed at a few bed and breakfasts. Each one was unique in it's own right. At one of the B&Bs we were entertained by a flock of unruly hens. Brandon attempted to capture one...unsuccessfully.

This is from Glenalough, an ancient monastic city set in the breathtaking Wicklow mountains just south of Dublin. While visiting many of the monastic sites I often found myself attempting to imagine what life would have been like for the devout monks living in the 12th century. I wish I could have spent a couple of days at one of the sites fasting, meditating and committing to silence and simplicity. Maybe someday I'll have a monastic experience.

I think the Rock of Cashel was my absolute favorite site. It was supposedly the site where a king was converted by Saint Patrick himself in the 5th century, though most of the buildings that remain are from the 12th and 13th centuries. The celtic art and medieval architecture were evidence of an entirely different world.

The little towns with their main streets were simply adorable...and yet I don't have a single photo of any of the strips we visited. This is a shot taken from the main street in Kilkenny looking through an alley to the ancient ruins of a cathedral found just behind the strip.

The natural beauty of the country was why I wanted to travel to the land of Ire to begin with. These photos don't even do the beauty any justice. Green was redefined!

And how could I not include a pub photo?! This was actually a church that had been renovated and transformed into an upscale pub in the heart of Dublin. We had our fair share of Guinness (though I must admit I drank almost as little as the prego). The pubs were truly where you felt the heartbeat of the culture...so lively, engaging and enjoyable.

I my include photos and a summary of our trip up to Belfast in a later post...that experience was too heavy for this quick synopsis. Oh...and incase you were wondering, this post took me longer than 17 minutes.