Browsing Tag

coffee

Black and White, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day

I want to be just like the woman at the coffee shop when I grow up.

May 10, 2020

When I was around 20 years old and playing in a band full time, I would stop by the coffee and donut shop, near my apartment, after the gig. You’d always find me and several other regulars there, night after night, winding down from our “shifts” with coffee and a donut.

Or was that the reason we were there?

I knew that, for me, it was more about visiting with the woman behind the counter than it was for any coffee or donut — but oh the donut! The reason it was so good was that she knew I liked the maple glazed kind so, when she saw me coming in, she would take one and drizzle extra maple on it just for me. She’d greet me with a smile and a hug and tell me how happy she was to see me and then she’d always ask how the gig went? 

But here’s the best part.

She listened (really listened) to what I had to tell her. She’d laugh and smile her beautiful smile — I mean, who wouldn’t want that coffee and donut?! She made sure I knew I was special and she knew how special she was to me. Then one night, many nights into this coffee shop routine, I looked around the room and saw on the faces of others what I felt inside — welcomed and cared for — I mattered. If to no one else, I mattered to her and so did they. 

I listened to her conversations with them, as much as I listened to my own with her — this woman — this wise and beautiful woman was in her way…well, healing people from the inside out. Over the years I watched from across the room as laughter erupted, tears fell, and anger subsided. I don’t know what all the stories were about, but I do know they were made better by her. 

One person — one beautiful, wise, kind and caring woman — intently listening to people and making a difference in their lives.  What a gift! Making people feel…no, scratch that, making people understand that they matter and sometimes (by my observations) for the first time. I felt privileged to watch it happen. 

I was reminded of those times as I watched my mother from across the room, listening to my Yittle, just as beautiful as she was all those years ago in the coffee shop. Listening in that special way that she has always listened, and as I saw the look on my little girl’s face (a look I have seen on so many faces before), I felt privileged all over again. Privileged and grateful that my children have this beautiful woman in their lives to listen and listen well. 

Mom, in case I haven’t told you lately, you pour the best cup of coffee — ever. When I grow up, I want to be just…like…you.

Happy Mother’s Day — I love you.

 

I wrote this a few years ago, and it has now become a tradition to share it every year. To all the mothers — I hope your day is special and Happy Mother’s Day!  💐💝🌺

 

 

 

Featured, Personal Side Interviews

The Personal Side of Tracy Sweeney

March 14, 2018

What happens when your passion and determination are led by grace? Incredible, wonderful things that’s what. Sit with Tracy Sweeney and me as she talks about how she got started, her role as a mom, how she connects with the families and children she photographs, and how it all comes together to serve her purpose. The love and gratitude she has for her family shine through in every moment, as does her teaching background in the stories she captures in her work.

This Personal Side of Tracy Sweeney interview was inspiring, fascinating and joyful for me and I know it will be for you too—I hope you’ll make time to watch it.

Thank you, Tracy, you’re kinda marvelous.

Black and White, Featured, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day, Travel

“It’s all so crazy — how do we possibly begin to sort this out?”

August 17, 2017

Times like this make me think about something my mom always says, “Sometimes your house has to get messier before it gets cleaned.” Sounds funny, right? But let me give you an example that she might give you. Let’s say you’re cleaning out that “junk drawer” in your kitchen because one day you’re going to have to pull out all the stuff you’ve been throwing in there. All the stuff you didn’t have time to deal with, or you didn’t know what to do with, or you thought you might use later but then forget about. One day, that junk starts falling out of the bottom of that drawer or onto the floor every time you open it, and that drawer can become so full and heavy that the knob starts to come off when you pull on it. Sometimes it gets so full the drawer can come completely off track. There’s no getting around the fact that eventually, you’ll have to start pulling everything out of that drawer and take a good look at what you’ve let pile up out of sight there, put everything out in the open and sort it all out.

“Hopeful people make me nuts!”

Hahahaha! I love my friends. I love our conversations just as much. ☺️

Happy Thursday everyone!

View from the Heceta Head Lighthouse B&B on the Oregon Coast.

Featured, Moments, Travel

Oh, Peter, you say the most thoughtful things.

June 5, 2017

“All those years I thought that it was power that brought responsibility. It’s not. I was wrong. It’s responsibility that brings power. It’s knowing what needs to be done that brings strength. And courage.” — Peter Parker


I was in New York this weekend and found myself looking out onto a lot of not my usual perspectives. Gave into my inner Peter Parker and had a lot of fun doing it too. I don’t think it’s the last time I’ll try something like this.


Especially when it gets…reflective.

Happy Monday everyone. I hope your week is a good one. 🙂

Black and White, Featured, Moments

The best date nights…

May 21, 2017

The best date nights always have rain.

I love the rain and date night.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend everyone and if you can remember, check back here tomorrow for something (a little) different. 😉

Black and White, Featured, Food and Drink, Moments

“Are you Grumpy Cat?”

April 8, 2017

Last night, around 9:00 p.m., I wandered up to my now favorite coffee bar and ordered a coffee. I couldn’t help but notice the brusqueness with which the man behind the counter took my order and “offered” some “advice” for the coffee I was taking away for someone else. I further paid attention to how he answered a woman who stopped to ask him for directions and when my young daughter and niece sat down at the counter (not realizing they were with me) I had to gently offer, “They’re with me” before he said something we’d have all regretted. Hahaha! I watched him for a few more sips and then became so intrigued by his grumpiness (he even managed to dry off the cups in a grumpy way) that I simply could not control my curiosity any longer and so I asked, “Are you Grumpy Cat?”

What happened next is what I love about people, about life, about coffee. Hahaha!

Grumpy Cat: “No, I’m Sleepy Cat.”

Me: Well, that explains it, Sleepy Cat can often turn into Grumpy Cat. Why so sleepy?

Sleepy Cat: “I have a 9 week old at home and I haven’t slept in nine weeks. I’m just tired. I apologize if I’ve been grumpy.”

Me: My hands immediately go into prayer position and I start to squeal with excitement (probably NOT what Grumpy/Sleepy Cat was hoping for) and I say, “First, congratulations! How wonderful! And, no wonder you’re so tired. Tell me, do you have one of those swinging bassinets?”

Sleepy Cat: “Actually, I do but…”

Sleepy Cat and I had a wonderful little chat and he wound up smiling (dare I say, giggling) and showing me photos of one of the most beautiful little nine week old babies you’ve ever seen. What an unexpected, awesome, cup of coffee. Now, Sleepy Cat, likely won’t remember me but I’ll remember him because he was once Grumpy Cat and when grumpy cats smile they have the most incredible smiles — the ones you never forget.

Have a great weekend everybody and if you happen to run into a grumpy cat remember he might just be a sleepy cat in disguise. Silly Sleepy Cat. 😽