the best of times, the worst of times.

Ah, Easter. The day of newness.
The reminder of redemption, rebirth, regrowth, re-working, and re-doing.

New comes. No matter what moments have passed, again, the sun rises.
And with each new day, the same question sits rocking in a boat on the water, back and forth,
with the same curious, innocent head cock and twinkling eyes, and says,

What will you do with today?

With innocence, beauty holds the answer in its fingertips ever-so gently and says,
No matter the season in your life, today is the gift to spend wisely.

Some of you blogosphere friends have noticed:
I’ve been curiously silent here.
It’s because of newness.
Because of the best of times and the worst of times.

“See you soon,” I said, Easter’s Resurrection in mind and heart.
And on whispers of “I love you,” Mom breathed out gently one more time, moving toward heaven.

Mom painting 2 Nov 22-13 copy

If you’ve lost someone close, you know it:
the worst of times.

And, then.


“You can do it,” i said.
On whispers of “I love you,” my youngest son, Ben, stepped onto the stage, moving into a new chapter.

(The moment is held in time, now, at the one-minute mark. Since they posted the promo, I’m sharing with you all :D)

If you’ve an open door of opportunity, you know it:
The best of times.
(All I can say is, watch the show!)


And it’s all good, all a measure of this wonderful gift of life we’ve been given.

We don’t know what each day will bring, what will be new in our lives. How we choose to respond — the meaning we ascribe to a situation, in Faith, and what we do with it — now that’s the one thing that can keep the keel steady.

Entrepreneurs, here’s a special note for us all, for our venture-making.

What will you do with today? is your daily question, from the first open eyes to their closing.

It’s about your internal and external response —
the management of emotional anguish and joy, toward the physical trials, while creating trust moments.
Every thought, every decision, moves us into, around, and past the conflict of that question.

What will you do with today?

No matter if you’re facing the mourning or the morning moments,
keep focused.


Writers, here’s a special note for us all, for our story-making.

What will you do with today? is your hero’s question, from the beginning of your story to the end.

It’s all about your hero’s internal and external response —
the emotional anguish and joy, the physical trials and trust moments. Every scene, every chapter, moves us into, around, and past the conflict of that question.

What will you do with today?

No matter if it’s the mourning or the morning moments,
keep your hero focused.

Make her feel.
Make him respond.
Make it the best of times and the worst of times.

That’s story we follow to the end.
(That’s the life we live fully, to the end.)

* Thup



  1. Erin, I’m very sorry to hear about your mother 😦 ((hugs))

    And your son is Ben, the young dancer? That’s all I could glean from that video. I don’t watch any of those shows so don’t know!

    • Sweet words of encouragement. Thank you, friend. Yes, cheering on the son who sweats, working hard, striving, growing, dancing his little heart out! We can always use the encouragement across the miles! Thank you!~ *Thup

  2. Hi Erin,
    Sending you love, hugs and empathy. Before I even read your post, the title resonated with me; I found out I was pregnant with my son the day after my mum died. I don’t need to tell you that grief and joy can live happily in the same heart if others give you space to trust that your heart knows what it’s doing. My son’s an exceptional young man, heading off to university this year, like his sister who’s a singer songwriter, studying music. My mum would be so proud of them as I’m sure your mum was of you and all of her large, loving family.

    I’ve recently started re-reading your writing after years spent focusing on raising my kids. I remember all those early pieces you did on parenting your large family, so when I decided to re-engage online, and came across your old email in my address book, I found this site. I read one post then subscribed. You write beautifully and authentically and that’s always been my blogging mission – brave authenticity.

    I’m glad you’re back.

    • Thanks, Janice, for your transparent and kind comment — Your story touches me, and in our humanity, we share this invisible yet very real connection across miles and even time. The written word amazes, encourages, influences, and even transforms us. Wow, eh?

      As a mom of 13 (four teens still at home), the in-the-trenches parenting is still going strong, and I speak often at conferences here in the US and online — because parenting is one of the most (if not THE most) important, thrilling, challenging, devastating, exhilarating jobs ever, and we surely need to stick together and share as much as possible of the joys and pains, successes and trials, so that we can figure this thing out and help our kids to be responsive, responsible, and loving, emotionally intelligent, caring adults. Hats off to you, sistah, for your exceptional young man going to university! Woot!

      Brave authenticity. I love that term. Bravo. Oh, that all who share scribed scratchings to others’ ears and eyes can let the heart onto the sleeve a little more…opening the chest a little more, despite the propensity for uncaring, unknowing people who lack desire to grow and become better lovers of humanity, throwing spears of ignorance. Don’t ever let people who feed on bleeding a heart take yours. (I won’t either.)

      It’s those who love in authenticity, who share their passion of life through ink-writ pages and paint-dipped brushes; of letter-laden script honesty and lens-viewed life capturing; of entrepreneurial expanded thought and reaching for dreams — those are the visionaries who pull life forward, enlarging the ability to be human by becoming all God intends us to be.

      You inspire me.

      * Thup

  3. Oh, yes, 13 (by birth, marriage, and adoption). The oldest will be 34, the youngest is 14. I’m old enough :).

    Just met a manager at a Bob Evans restaurant in Canton, Michigan, who’s 73 and looks in his 50s. Seriously, I was blown away at how young he looked.

    Like a good leader, the man came over to the table to ask my two youngest boys how they liked their breakfasts. He said his secret to looking young has been eating well, keeping on with work, and having kids around (he started his family in his mid-40s). Well, I think he’s spot on.


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