The State of an Author-Composer’s World

Do you ever have that feeling that there’s just too much going on? No, of course not, she says (wink-wink). This summer hit me like a Mack truck, and the grace in it was that I was so focused on two weeks in July–my week at NPM in Cincinnati and our trip to Colorado last week–that I…

Read More

My “Week Off”

I was supposed to take this week, the last week of summer school, as a week off writing. I’ve finished my novel revision, and that was my reward: scrapbooking, some time sitting outside in the quiet, a shopping trip, maybe even a couple hours in front of the TV. Well, I have deadlines, so forget…

Read More

Kisses In The Outfield (Photo Friday)

Monday night, when the coach dismissed the boys from their last (praise God!) baseball game of the season, he followed it up with, “Let’s get together for a parents-vs-kids game on Wednesday!” I clamped down on the biggest “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” ever heard in the history of humankind. (Yes, I too can do idiotic superlatives that bear…

Read More

Learning To Say No…to Me.

“I need to learn to say ‘no’ more.” Those words, spoken by a friend of mine this past January, were like a tiny pebble in a small creek. They resonated, but I already knew, or thought I knew, what I wanted to focus on in 2017, and the word “no” wasn’t it. But as the…

Read More

The Negative Loop From Hell

Life has been feeling pretty overwhelming lately. If I haven’t given out that vibe, just look back at the fluffy blog posts I’ve been publishing, trying to avoid talking about it. I’m not sure why it seems so much harder right now. Really, not all that much has changed. Maybe this is what people mean…

Read More

The Challenge of Achieving Zen When Your Kids Are Wrestling On The Floor

I spent last week hobnobbing with my fellow liturgical composers…which means I got to geek out about hanging out with people I have looked up to since I was old enough to pay attention to the names in the copyright line at the bottom of the hymnal pages. And yes, I am fully aware that…

Read More

I’ve Forgotten How To Be Still

When I was in the sixth grade, I wore soft contacts that I had to stick in this boiler thingamabob every night. And every night I would open the lid and unscrew the contact case to make sure my contacts were still in there. Not just once. Again and again, until the case got to…

Read More

New Year, Not Exactly New Adventures

Well, I had all but decided to quit blogging as of January 1st. But I tossed off a quick post about Julianna and—gasp—a whole bunch of people read it. So I’m entering 2017 with a willingness to keep on keeping on, although I think I’m going to be more off-the-cuff than I have been in…

Read More

Living Slow

Sometimes life seems like a full-on sprint. I take a deep breath, as I did on Tuesday afternoon last week, and comfort myself that this is the worst a Tuesday is ever going to get, this school year. Or I have a Saturday like this past weekend, in which nothing was scheduled and consequently I…

Read More

The Grace to Let Enough be Enough

“What come next?” There was a period of several months recently when Julianna was constantly asking this question: when a song ended on a CD, at the end of a scene in a movie, whenever we got back in the van after running an errand or going to a lesson. Lately, it feels like the…

Read More