Chase Fireflies


The Perfect Guy

One of our small groups recently compiled this list of traits. It cracked me up so much I had to post it:).

1. True Christian
2. Not a jerk face
3. Good with kids
4. Good sense of humor
5. Good morals
6. Mature
7. Treats family well
8. Treats friends well
9. Good work ethic

1. Hot
2. Confident but not conceited
3. Basketball player
4. Likes Mexican people
5. Drummer or guitarist
6. Loves animals

1. Writer
2. Surfer
3. Six pack
4. Taller then you

Funny thing is, Paul meets 99% of the requirements, though I have yet to see him on a surfboard. Love you, hon:)

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What Little I Know About Change (After the Fact)

Yeah, this post may have been relevant two weeks ago. But it’s not now. Oh well. I was never quick with the punches anyway. Always the last to turn in her test, run suicides, or respond in a debate. So, with lightening speed, here goes one delayed uptake on our nation’s transition of power.

If anything, Obama’s inauguration ushered in a hope of a better tomorrow for many Americans. He utilized this notion in his campaign and people rallied behind him in droves. We are clearly a people desperate for hope, for something better than now, for change. We want to know that America’s standing in the world will improve and that the price of food will go down; that our soldiers will be safe and that our children will be spared of the heartaches of our day. We want to know that our jobs are safe and that are streets are getting there. I want to know these things, I want to hope.

Yet hope and subsequent change do not hinge on a presidency, though it be the highest office in the land. They’re not hinged on programs or politics or droves of people who really, really want something. Change begins in our hearts, in our homes, and in the private decisions we make. Change beckons us out of that deep, scarred place within us; a place that can’t help but be selfish and cruel and wanting, always wanting. A measure of change may come at the hands of determination and guts and will. But the kind of change that makes people whole again – always comes at the hands of a Savior.

Twelve years ago now, I found change in an old abandoned parking lot in the city. Two hours before work every day, I met with God here. Me and Him and those words of His. Those life giving, beautiful, crazy, don’t make any sense words. Words like, “Let the dead bury their own dead,” and “A bruised reed He will not break” and this insane notion that, “All who touched Him were healed.” I didn’t understand the half of it, but I wanted to. With every question, more were provoked. And with every answer, more were provided.

So we kept meeting there, in this place. Come fall, winter, spring, summer. Every day, two hours. And all I wanted was more. More of God, less of me. (Something I still need by the way.) In a place of emptiness, I found myself whole. Whole to love again like He first taught me how. Whole to receive the Hope that first came into this world, anyway. Whole to give that Hope away. Desperation could leave its scars on my razor filled tires and on the innocents that walked in my classroom, but I knew there was Hope. And I was going to fight for it. Because He fought for me.

I think that’s where hope and change really hinge, anyhow. They hinge on a God who fights for us. In our loneliness and in our fears and in those doubts we’re swimming in. In our vices and in our grieving and in our weakness, He fights. He is for us and not against us. For us and not against us.

Now that is some crazy kind of Hope. And that Hope will always be relevant (which is why I decided to post this molding, after the fact blog anyhow:)

In Hope,



I LOVED this post:

Today during President Obama’s speech he called on Americans to personally sacrifice so that change can come. The idea of sacrifice for the greater good is something that historically Americans have done but that’s not history from my life time. Sacrificing so that someone else can break even is something our country is no longer known for.

I wonder if Obama will be able to lead our country into that change. I hope he can. But Obama will have to be a very smart, strong, and persuasive leader to bring about this change. A large part of his success as a President will be reflected in whether or not he can do this, on whether or not we are willing to change… (post in its entirety here.)

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Rhode Island, Home

Dunkin Donuts small regulas
Staying up till 1 handcrafting cards with my mom
Watching college hoops with my dad
Seeing my kids fall in love with their Mimi and Papa

Lobsta, scrod, scallops, and indulging on fruit and vegetables
Carousel rides, Gymboree, and making wishes in the fountains
Exploring at the Providence Children’s Museum
Relishing my Grandfather’s stories, again. Thanking God for his life, wisdom, love

The heaps of snow
That salty ocean air
Long talks
That wicked Rhode Island accent

I’ve missed this place. It’s great to be back.
The only thing missing is Paul.
Home isn’t home without him.
We love you, hon.


We Made It

One delayed flight.
One full out sprint to make connection. In heels. Holding Adden on hip and careening Selah in stroller. (heels= horrible choice for travel)
One mom on verge of tears praying for the gate door to re-open.
One lost stroller.
One sweet ride on an airport taxi.

One great homecoming.
Two fantastic little travelers.
And innumerable answered prayers.


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Rhode Island Bound

Hi guys!

I’m flying to Rhode Island tomorrow with kids in tow. WHOOHOO! WHOOHOO! The only bummer is that Paul has to work. We will miss him terribly! Hoping he’ll be able to join us in the spring/summer…

Anyway, I would really cherish your prayers for a safe and peaceful flight. (That means pray that Adden doesn’t have a conniption while on the planes.) I’m already stressing over angry/sympathetic/annoyed looks from fellow passengers, but I need to give the little guy the benefit of the doubt. Maybe he’ll be fabulous.

Thanks so much,

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Africa Needs God, So He Says

Matthew Parris recently penned this article, “As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God.”

In it, he claims that, “Missionaries, not aid money, are the solution to Africa’s biggest problem – the crushing passivity of the people’s mindset.” A shocking claim that, “Confounds [his] ideological beliefs, stubbornly refuses to fit [his] world view, and has embarrassed [his] growing belief that there is no God.”

In another section of the article, Matthew also observes that some of the most impressive African members of the Pump Aid team (largely from Zimbabwe) were, privately, strong Christians. In reference to this assertion, he states, “It would suit me to believe that their honesty, diligence and optimism in their work was unconnected with personal faith. Their work was secular, but surely affected by what they were. What they were was, in turn, influenced by a conception of man’s place in the Universe that Christianity had taught.”

“Their work was secular, but surely affected by what they were.” For anyone in a secular work environment, there’s no greater challenge than this… to stand out in excellence and to let our conception of God affect who we are.


These Fine Lines

The me I see in the mirror looks different these days.

The fine lines crease around my eyes. My pale skin begs for a good helping of spinach, as my mom used to say. And there are jowls taking up residence on my hips.

But I’ve always looked this way. There are no changes here.
The change is my perception of God and His conception of me.

In October, I weighed in at a post-op appointment. The needle on the scale rested on 107. The number floored me so much that I nearly contested the weight. Had I guessed, I would’ve said 130, maybe 135. I remember sitting on the white paper they use to line those examination tables, waiting for my surgeon to come in. I wondered how someone who only weighed 107 could still think she looked overweight. Could still despise the sight of her own self…

I came home that day and cried. Cried cause of the loss of a baby, cried cause of a twisted self-image, cried cause I didn’t want to propagate this hate anymore. How would my daughter ever know her own beauty, the signature of her Maker, if her mom could not accept it? If her mom railed against it every time she stared back at herself…

It was this day, this moment, that birthed healing for me. And I will continue to grow towards wholeness for the sake of my daughter. She wants to be just like me, she wants to be just like me. I can choose to perpetuate the self-hatred or I can choose to give her the gift of beauty. Beauty that dances outside of the realms of this culture’s gross obsession. Beauty that recognizes her Maker’s design and identifies it as good, very good.

These days the fine lines crease around my eyes. And they laugh with delight and joy. I have smiled and I have smiled and I have smiled some more.

My pale skin begs for a good helping of spinach, as my mom used to say. And that shouts of health. I no longer need toxic doses of the sun or the occasional tanning bed to make me feel good about myself. I love the color of the skin I’m in, finally.

And then there are the jowls, jowls I now treasure. They speak of carrying two lives into the world. Two amazing and healthy and intricately designed lives, made beautiful by the fingerprints of their Creator.

My Creator, who has written redemption all over the place.

All over me, even in these fine lines.

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Overnight Coffee Cake

This is one of my favorite new breakfast recipes. It’s so convenient to have it prepared the night before, so in the morning it’s ready to be put in the oven.

On the subject of recipes, Paul’s cousin Megan has started a new blog about her cooking endeavors, called What Megan’s Making. From the sounds of it, she’s a pretty sweet cook and her recipes are diverse and healthy. You’ll find everything from curry and biscotti to pita bread and Chicken Marsala. I am anxious to try many of her recipes myself. Enjoy!

Anyway, Overnight Coffee Cake directions:

3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons milk

Directions: In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the flour, baking soda, nutmeg and salt; gradually add to the creamed mixture alternately with sour cream. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish.

In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, pecans and cinnamon; sprinkle over coffee cake. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Combine confectioners’ sugar and milk; drizzle over warm coffee cake.

Yield: 12-15 servings.