Monday, July 25, 2011

Ballast Rocks

I have a collection of prized possessions in my garden … three ballast rocks from the Outer Banks.
A few years ago, my Dad would regularly dive down and haul these heavy rocks from the waters off Roanoke Island to use as borders in his garden.The rocks are protected today and only the “old-timers” seem to have any in their yards. I admired their beauty and recently my Dad gave me a small collection. According to Dad, ballast rocks were used to stabilize the early ships and counterbalance the stress and strain of wind on the sails, giving the ships stability and enabling them to sail without danger of capsizing. I’m told that these rocks, so essential for safe voyage, had to later be thrown off for safe passage into the new land. The throwing off of the ballast rocks created a lighter vessel that could safely navigate the shallow, rocky waters that encircled the new land and new opportunities. Had the ships held on to the things that had once provided security, they would have never been able to arrive at their destination safely.
Ballast rocks are a great reminder to let go of things…even things that may have brought security… and embrace change. Change that can bring about new opportunities and “new land”. Change that will never come without letting go of the old way of doing things and navigating into new thoughts and new visions.
“Forget the former things.. I will do a new thing.” Isaiah 43:18-19

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Squash Blossoms

Each morning in my summer garden a series of squash blossoms unfurl and show off their bright little faces. They are a fleeting show and by late morning they pull their shades down and close up … the show is over until tomorrow morning when a fresh new group arrives. I’ve learned to respect their timing if I want to catch a glimpse of them in their full glory.

Timing is even more important if they are to be enjoyed as a divine culinary experience … known here in the South as, fried squash blossoms. Umm, just the thought of these lightly crisped, creamy morsels makes me swoon. These beautiful airy blossoms wrap their delicate petals around a savory cream cheese filling, swan dive into an egg batter and then frolic around in a dusting of flour & bread crumbs before they are glorified with a quick olive oil flash fry. Whoa … just brace yourself for the first bite and the explosion of creamy flavor that fills your mouth. There’s just nothing like it … and it’s only found in a rare commodity…fresh squash blossoms.

Timing is everything with squash blossoms. Picked too early, they can’t contain the filling … picked too late, they shrivel and lose the filling.

Squash blossoms are a little like the opportunities God gives us each day… and timing is important here too. Opportunities of giving time, giving a smile, giving an encouragement will present themselves each day and we can fill them if we are looking and don’t let them pass us by. The explosion of flavor from these filled opportunities doesn’t even compare to the fried squash blossoms.


P.S. Recipes for fried squash blossoms abound on the internet, but if you’d like mine, just send us an email @

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

New Artwork!

It’s been a busy summer for us... traveling, staying home with the kids (and trying to find just one spare hour a day to be creative), swimming, get the idea. We’ve been busy creating and thinking and planning. And we couldn’t wait any longer to show you some new artwork. Remember when you were a kid in art class and you’d weave paper or make mosaics? (We sometimes get the best inspiration from their ideas!) This is just the beginning...there’s more to be uploaded. And we’ll be offering prints soon on Etsy.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sallie’s Seeds

A packet of zinnia seeds has slept quietly in my kitchen drawer for almost two years. Given to me by my friend, Sallie, they weren’t entirely forgotten, just neglected by daily schedules… the intent to plant them was always there, I just never seemed to find the time. Early this summer I was thrilled to have a morning free and eagerly clasped the packet of seeds and planted them in the rich soil of my flower garden. Ahhh, … I could just feel their relief to be in their new home … a place where they could flourish and become everything that was hidden inside of them. How amazing that these dry, brittle, unimpressive seeds that I thought might not even be alive could produce the creations that now cover my flowerbed. Brilliant, vibrant, expressive colors with little yellow faces have exploded from these unassuming little seeds. Who would have thought such beauty could be contained inside? It made me think of how God views us …. His little seeds on this earth. Many of us have yet to flourish and become everything that has been hidden inside of us. We need to plant ourselves in rich soil and that takes a little time. This week, find time to nourish yourself with a little time with your Creator. Sink yourself in the rich soil of prayer and reading His Word …. And get ready for the quiet explosion that will come. You are a seed just waiting to bloom.