Saturday, June 24, 2023

Porch #97 ๐Ÿ“ฌ June Somethings

 PORCH
A CHRIST-CENTERED
WEEKEND NEWSLETTER
gentle conversation & calming snapshots
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for those who delight in doing life
in the company of kindred spirits

๐Ÿ“ฌ

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How are you today?

It's an early rainy morning here on Cape Cod and I literally am on the porch, sitting on this sofa, pulling this newsletter together.  I did a quick calculation last night ... we've been able to spend 14 days this month with our grandkids (and parents) in Connecticut, Maryland, and right here this week.  A new record, I'm guessing.

The house is now still as a stone.  It's so quiet you could hear a pin drop.  The loud laughter and music and random dancing have ceased.  There's not ten conversations going at once or sweet memories being made one-on-one.  The kitchen is not overflowing with food, counters and tabletops are clear of water bottles, phones, and sun glasses, and there's no piles of shoes to trip over.

The 14 days were sprinkled with little miracles, right and left.  Like stardust that sparkled bright and left me in awe of God's faithfulness and the reality of answered prayer.

I miss it all. 

*

something loved


something read
'Our God is bigger and better than our circumstances, fears, wounds, misconceptions, and past failures.  There is security and joy in declaring the goodness, kindness, loving, and eternal nature of our Father.  We dictate the emotions we feel by what we choose to dwell on and believe.  Our minds are the battleground for our emotions, actions, and desire to dwell in communion with our good God.'
-
 First15


something learned

It took me weeks, but I finally emptied my Juno email account.  She was with me every step of the way for 30 years, long before blogging and texting became my daily bread.  

I wasn't sure what to do with the thousands of emails Mom had sent or the all the cute stories of the grandkiddos when they were little or copies of every post I ever wrote.

But in the process, I realized I didn't need to stuff my new email account with old memories.  My heart sheltered the moments that needed to be treasured.  And once I started hitting the delete button, I realized I'd survive without having to hold onto and re-read a blow by blow account of my life since 1993.

I can't begin to tell you how light and unencumbered I felt when it was all over.  Freedom from the tyranny of the sheer quantity of what I had thought was so essential. 


something eaten


Clam chowder and a stuffed quqhog.  Oyster crackers, melted butter, lemon ... and a lovely pink lily.  Lunch at Landfall in Woods Hole, a waterfront restaurant 'constructed of wood taken from old shipwrecks and boards from old buildings.'

What are you loving, reading, learning, and eating?  I'd love to hear.
Linda

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If you're a blogger, a whole bunch of us have been figuring out what we really want to do with our normal routines this summer.  It's not too late to join the conversation.  Click here.

Jennifer & Paula & Jeanne & Donna & Richella & Lisa & Dee & Joanne
- thanks!

53 comments:

  1. Pam https://pamecrement.comJune 24, 2023 at 9:13 AM

    Life has its ebbs and flows in each season as the Lord teaches us to adapt to pluses and minuses ♥️

    ReplyDelete
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    1. And I never fail to be amazed that ebbs + flows + pluses + minuses can somehow exist side by side.
      ๐Ÿคท‍♀️

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  2. That after-visit time can be hard. Lovely quiet -- but boy, one misses the joy of it all!

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    1. The memories are the joy that lingers long, yes?
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  3. That down time from the raucous activities filled with love and memories does hit like a load of bricks, Linda. Even though we've longed for silence, we are sad beyond words. I know I grieved for weeks after the grands and their parents left for home. Yet, such is the way of life, the ebb and flow, the joys and sorrows. We are simply blessed to experience each and every moment.

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    1. Yes please to see all these family rhythms as a blessing, Martha. I love how you put it ...
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  4. Linda just love visiting you on the porch, Cape Cod! Is that where you live? so jealous. We always visit when at my sister-in-law's in Worcester, Ma.
    That quilt is gorgeous by the way....
    Oh how my heart goes out to you deleting all of those emails. I struggle in the same way, but your wise words are a balm to my soul, thank you for sharing that!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yes, it was a struggle to figure out what to do with thousands of emails that at one time seemed so necessary to save. I started with the easiest folders to get rid of and worked my way slowly to the more personal notes. I realized I didn't have to re-read and save all Mom's emails. I have hand-written notes, and bits and pieces of her life around our home. She remains in my heart, always.

      Once I realized this to be true, it took a huge burden off. I'm so grateful.
      ๐Ÿ“ƒ

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  5. The aftermath of a family visit is always a little bittersweet to me--It's odd how you can miss them and yet be glad everything is back to normal--at the same time. It's fun to take a while and just bask on the glow of the time together.

    Once when I was cleaning out an old email account, I took the ones I wanted to save (like a few, not all, from my mom) and copied and pasted them into a Word document. They don't take up much room that way and they're there if I want them. I may even delete those some day, but wasn't ready to yet then.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. 'It's odd how you can miss them and yet be glad everything is back to normal--at the same time.'

      So perfectly said, Barbara. And I love that idea of using a Word document to save the special treasures.
      ๐Ÿ‘

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  6. Those precious family moments are over way too soon. My two granddaughters spent last night and I just took them home. We danced, sang, played dolls, read books, and they curled my hair. Now it is raining and the quiet has settled in.

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    1. Oh what fun, Pam! I kind of miss those little girl years, but I am enjoying where the kids are now ... I love when substantial 1-1 conversations come up and talking about personal stuff like memories, legacies, burdens, identity, faith, decisions.
      ๐Ÿ‘’

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  7. That quiet house after the chaos is such a jolt! And then I find the Hot Wheel car in the couch cushions and miss the little tornadoes all over again!

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    1. Did you find the one under the stove yet?
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  8. Jennifer, thanks for hosting 4 Somethings each month!
    ๐Ÿญ

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  9. What beautiful memory-making moments with family, Linda! I love seeing your precious family! And the quilt! I'm so glad you experienced the grace of the Lord to deal with 30 years of Juno emails - such a huge task! I'm so glad the burden has been rolled off your shoulders. Great First15 quote.

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    1. The quilt looks wonderfully vintage but I got it at JC Penney (I think) about 30 years ago. It's been through the wash dozens of times and looks and feels like the real deal.
      ๐Ÿงต

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  10. Linda, I'm so glad you were able to enjoy so much family time and spot those little miracles and answers to prayer in the process. Also thankful for your example as I work through my own email inbox. I'm not giving myself a deadline or a numerical goal ... right now, my primary mission is to streamline and free up storage. I haven't tackled any emotionally heavy stuff yet but I'm finding that you're right ... the more I delete, the more I'm able to delete. Stay tuned ...

    ReplyDelete
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    1. You're so right, Lois, giving ourselves time and space to sort through such a monumental collection of info is smart. I found I could only do so much at once. I dealt with receipts and stuff first and then worked from there to deal with personal notes. The pics came last and I saved the keepers to my computer. You really get on a roll and the freedom of less stuff hanging over your head really spurs you on.

      Interesting how texting now takes the place of emaiing. Most of my emails are newsletters and ministry stuff and that's it. Times do change, don't they ...

      Delete
  11. Aw, I bet that it was wonderful to get to spend so much time with family this month! That lunch looks amazing.

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    1. I loved every minute of it. But three days later I'm still recovering.
      ๐Ÿคช

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  12. I can only imagine the wonderful memories all of you made together and how much you miss them now that they are gone. May God bring all of you safely together for many more such occasions!

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  13. We all love family time! Your photos really capture that warmth too. I've been trying to get my email under control and whenever I do just delete a whole bunch it feels really good! LOL Hope the rest of your summer is fabulous!

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    1. For sure, deleting in all its shapes and forms is such good therapy!
      ๐Ÿ—‘️

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  14. "The house is still as a stone" are words I used when the grandson went back home after a day or two with us on the occasional weekend. (He is now almost 17 and not interested in coming to Indiana to visit). I miss those days but I have to admit the quiet was unnerving. After the madhouse the quiet was welcomed but also missed. One more thing: rain? What's that? My daughter said just yesterday that they are saying we will need at least 6" of rain (the good kind) to catch up to what we need to stave off the drought. The rain, hail, thunderstorm and tornado warnings yesterday (Sunday) were not the kind we needed. May we borrow some of your soft rain? LOL Have a great week Linda. Sorry I'm late to this party. The weekends are a zoo and an extra trip to a hospital over 100+ miles round trip on a Sunday afternoon sort of did me in.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Rest well, friend. Pastors and ministry leaders are driving themselves hard. There are so many broken and wounded people in our lives. May this week find you with an easier schedule ...

      And yes, I wouldn't doubt that drought is a distinct possibility this summer. Our raindrops have been few and far between.
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  15. Such beautiful photos of family...there is nothing better. I love clam chowder and now after seeing that picture, I think I'm going to have to have some soon. :) Hope you have a wonderful day.

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    1. I hear you, Cathy. I could use a bowl for lunch. But will probably end up with a jelly sandwich!
      ๐Ÿฅช

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  16. So Blessed to have 14 days in a month with family! ❤️. Ours are scattered hither and yon these days making it hard to ever be all together. The moments of joy come when 2 or 3 are gathered together..,and we cherish each one. If you are ever in our “neighborhood”…come visit! ❤️

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I kind of like 2 or 3 at a time. It's too easy to get lost in a crowd. 1-1 is best of all.
      ๐Ÿ‘ญ

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  17. You have made me think how clearing up our email boxes can be a decluttering activity that's just as important as simplifying our physical spaces. Sometimes I do long for the days where falling behind responding to physical letters just meant a letter or two, never 100's like our email boxes can be! The delete button seems to be the most worn out on my keyboard! :) May your summer bring more laughter and memories as the days carry-on!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. My husband and sister and I cleared out and shredded some old files of my parents' this morning. In fact, we burned the shredder into oblivion. I find this kind of decluttering to be a great relief and always emerge feeling lighter.

      I think Mom and Dad would understand ...
      ๐Ÿ—ƒ️

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  18. On Friday morning we picked up the two granddaughters (ages 6 and 10) that live near us and kept them at our house until Saturday evening, just before dinner. One of their favorite activities: pool-noodle "sword" fights in the basement, in a wide, carpeted area with no furnishings. Much noise and lots of laughter! The silence after their visits is bittersweet.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yeah, that silence is almost jarring. I found it almost disorienting last weekend.
      ๐Ÿ™‰

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  19. That quilt, the food - someone who understands a house in chaos, swirling with love - I'm ready to come visit! My house is practically still as stone right now (two grands napping), but the people coming through my door - oh, how it has made my heart glad. Our cups have overflowed this month, my friend! What blessing! This summer, I have been organizing the stories and the writings for my boys - I think one day, someone will enjoy them - at least, that is what I am hoping.

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    1. 'Swirling with love.' What a superb way of putting it, Maryleigh. You're right, our hearts have been gladdened and our cups have overflowed. THESE are the good old days ... and making new joyful memories honors those who've gone before us.

      I'd love to hear more about organizing your writing for the boys. Do tell.
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  20. I tend to be an email hoarder (mostly work-related) so I admire your ability to purge 30 years of emails!

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    1. Slow and steady wins the race! And there's no regrets about anything deleted. Just a whole lot of freedom.
      ๐Ÿข

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  21. What a treat to be able to spend so much time with family. Two weeks ago, the kids, grandkids and I went to the Smoky Mountains for five days. It was wonderful.

    Now I need to ask, what is quqhog?

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    1. OOPS! You win the prize for finding the misspelling of the month! Quahog is a large clam.
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  22. Thats quite the lesson learned emptying your email account - letting go. I am glad you took your time to savor the memories, keeping that joy in your heart, then letting go. congrats on feeling lighter.

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    1. It ended up being easier than I thought it would even though it took longer than I had hoped.
      ๐Ÿคท‍♀️

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  23. What a great verse! We used to have Juno email long ago. Glad you were able to let go and empty your account and that it helped you to feel lighter. Hope you have a wonderful July!

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    1. Jean, welcome! I'm so glad you're here ...
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  24. Joining you on your porch today, Linda. Wow! What a great month of visiting with your family.
    Visiting today from Share Four Somethings #1

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  25. I have quite a few old emails too, some from my parents as well. I keep my inbox cleaned out daily, but the folders contain lots of old stuff that one day maybe I'll just mass delete? Or not. :)

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    1. Another empty-inbox-lover! I thought I might be the only one!
      ๐Ÿ“ญ

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  26. Time with family is a gift and one I treasure as well. I try to keep my inbox free of clutter...it mostly works, LOL. Happy Independence Day!!

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    1. Mostly is the key word, isn't it, Cindy.
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