Trees of Transition

Comfort for people going through life transitions by sharing thoughts, photos, cards, and recipes.

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Where DID that Shoe Go? And Spring Card Sale!

“Where DID his other shoe go?” I thought as I fumbled around in the blankets and toys by my son’s car seat. The other little white shoe, which I had already put back on his size 5 foot TWICE during that shopping trip, did not turn up even after five minutes of looking.

My mind weighed the options: “Do I go back to Aldi to look in the parking lot?” Contrasted against, “Those shoes are getting old with lots of black scuff marks, so I can just let it go…” But then my mind protested, “Those are the easiest shoes to put on him, and I don’t have another great pair for him right now! I really want that shoe back!! God, please help me to find Joel’s shoe.”

I talked with my husband as I dropped off a package at FedEx, even got a bit snippy because I didn’t think I could call Aldi (they don’t have a customer service desk like large grocery stores). My husband tried to call them, but they said you only could email the store…

So I decided to drive the extra 15 minutes back to the store and see if I could find that shoe. The day shone with spring brightness, so my mood came back up…

I pulled into the Aldi parking lot, knelt on the ground to look under the cars that were parked where we had been…to no avail…no little white sneaker…

I had given it a good go…I pulled out of the parking lot, then onto the main road—the same route I had driven an hour before.

Then, there on the median, in the middle of the busy road, lay Joel’s shoe!!! I almost didn’t believe it, but it had the black accent on the back—it was his shoe! I pulled two u-turns at the next two  stoplights to get back to the spot and pulled over. I had to wait for traffic to go by (and I snapped a photo while I waited to run across the road), and I picked up the little shoe!! I smiled and jumped around as I showed my son his lost shoe.

Then a memory came back—I had rolled my window down around then…and I sort of remember something hitting my shoulder, but I hadn’t looked…then it hit me: My son had chucked his shoe over my shoulder, from the backseat, out my window. Wow, that was a good arm—a little shoe chucker! Wow, God answered my prayer and helped me find that shoe!!

I called my husband to tell him the story, giggling as I said, “I found his shoe—it was in the middle of Flying Cloud Drive…”

God cares about everything. I’m so glad he is like that!   He cares about that shoe because I cared about it, and I am his child.

So talk to him about what is bugging you today. He cares…even about finding a scuffed little shoe.

If you want to celebrate spring: SALE TIME!! Oh, yes, if you need spring cards for Easter, baby showers, mother’s day, graduations, weddings and more, check out my card sale over at my Etsy shop—15% off everything until Sunday night, March 31st, 2019 at midnight CST. Check it out here: Spring Card Sale!

~Mary Hope

Copyright 2019

P.S. Thank you for stopping by! I insert affiliate links, such as from  Amazon, into my posts to share interesting books and products. If you buy something or start a registry, I receive income (at no extra cost to you!), for which I am thankful. So…..

— Use this link to shop on  Amazon

–shop at my Etsy photo card shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

–keep on reading this blog.

Thank you again, and peace to you and your family!

~Mary Hope

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Need an Encouraging Parenting Book? Try This One!

Do you stress out about your child’s education and future? Would you like to sit down and talk with a mother of eight kids (who are thriving) about children’s personalities and life choices? I would! Having a fun chat is what Julie Lyles Carr’s book Raising an Original is like. Continue reading

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Teaching the Christmas Story to Our Son

img_0991Three days ago, Stephen held our 13-month old, Joel, as I pulled out the Nativity stable and set it on the top of a bookshelf. Then we got to unwrap the characters in the story! First we pulled out the angel to hang on top of the stable: Joel liked touching her wings. Next we unwrapped Mary. As I showed the figure to Joel, I said, “This is Jesus’ mother!” Then we found baby Jesus lying in his manger—Joel was interested because he likes babies. And then we unwrapped Joseph, as I said, “This is Jesus’ earthly father!” We enjoyed looking at it for a minute more before he wanted to get down and play.

Yesterday I picked up Joel so he could see the Nativity scene again and I told him more of the story, “Jesus came down to earth as a baby because He loves us!” He looked at the figures thoughtfully—it felt like he understood what I was saying. Then he smiled and wanted down so he could play.

It is such an honor to teach him this beautiful true story!

I don’t remember when I first heard the story of Jesus’ birth from Luke 2 in the Bible, but it was early like we are teaching Joel. He is enjoying the colored lights, music, and seeing friends; I’m glad we get to share with him whose birthday celebration this day is in honor of!

We aren’t the only one teaching him the Christmas story; a couple of weeks ago at church we came back to the nursery to pick up Joel and he had colored his first picture at church! I love seeing those colored marks–his coloring skills consist of making dashes and sometimes dots.

Merry Christmas from our family to yours! May your 2019 be amazing and full of delightful transitions.

Love, Mary Hope and the guys

Copyright 2018

P.S. Thank you for stopping by! I insert affiliate links, such as from  Amazon, into my posts to share interesting books and products. If you buy something or start a registry, I receive income (at no extra cost to you!), for which I am thankful. So…..

— Use this link to shop on  Amazon

–shop at my Etsy photo card/notecard/art shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

–keep on reading this blog.

Thank you again, and peace to you and your family!

~Mary Hope

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Teaching Babies to Love the Bible // Children’s Bible Recommendations

Stephen and I take turns reading the Bible to Joel before bed.

One day a couple of months ago, after Joel woke up from his morning nap, in his still-sleepy state, he cuddled with me for a bit. I keep books on the dresser near his chair, and on this day he reached for his children’s Bible, so I brought it over for him to hold.

He studied the cover intently; his eyes scrunched into a smile as he looked down at the picture of Jesus. There was love in his eyes.

Continue reading

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Photos from My Son’s First Birthday!!

This morning my son pulled one of my cards out of the box and wanted to look at it. He liked how flexible it was, and tried crumpling it up before I took a couple of photos of him and then rescued the card! I’m happy to see that he is interested in cards already (or it might have been the shiny cover).

I’ve made cards all through my pregnancy with him, and now all through his first year. Talking walks with him out in nature has been inspiring me to make new cards this whole year. Seeing him enjoying the pictures and the paper brings me joy!

Need any cards? Today is a big sale over at my Etsy shop Trees of Transition Art & Design—30% off today (November 26th, 2018) and I’m offering free shipping in the USA right now! I’ve been trying out hand lettered cards, so I have Thank you, Merry Christmas, and I love you versions of those right now. I also have many photography cards from around the USA, Costa Rica, and more.

Check it out here: my Etsy photo card/notecard/art shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

On November 14th, my son turned one!! We went to our Bible study like usual, but we started the morning out with a balloon and a birthday gift, a plastic airplane with a propeller that he loves spinning.

Then I made his favorite dinner—chicken soup. And since he hasn’t eaten cake yet, we put a candle in a banana and sang, “Happy Birthday” to him, and he loved it. Continue reading


Sweet Times with My Dad

My Dad will be 81 on June 4th, and I’m pondering my favorite memories of him…here are a few:

Let’s start with some food memories (since Dad and I both love our food!) We had a huge hickory tree next to our driveway, and each fall it would drop thousands of nuts—at first they we insulated in 1/2inch thick covering, that would fall off in quarters as they dried, then leaving the small (about the size of a blackberry) nut that also had 1/8-inch of shell. My dad made me a “Hickory nut cracker” –a strong contraption that would break through that heavy shell. Once when I was around 10, I took the time to crack a lot of hickory nuts and then I baked them into cookies. They had a strong, pecan-like flavor. I took some out to Dad working in his shop, and he liked them. Continue reading

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I’m Thankful for My Mom


I’m thankful, Mom, that you:

Taught me how to sew, and that we made that blue and green apron together. You were tired, but I loved making that special project with you.

Taught me how to cook and bake bread! You showed me the basics and then let me go. I’m thankful I got to grow up on homemade bread and butter, with our homegrown honey too. Continue reading

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Is Motherhood a Let Down?

Is having a baby a let down in an adult’s life? Some people may think that staying home to take care of a child might be a let down compared to a fast-paced career… and thinking from this perspective sure made a hilarious series that is currently on Netflix!

The Let Down is a seven episode series made by Netflix to highlight common struggles that new parents have, such as sleep deprivation, communication problems with those close to you, and feeling lost among all the newness. Continue reading


Being In the Sandwich Generation

I have a vibrant three month old son, and my Dad is 80 and living in a nursing home with declining health. I’m in the middle of these extremes; most of the time I’m happy about it, but today I have been sad. Continue reading

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Crockpot Granola


The transition from being a pregnant lady to a nursing Mom takes a lot of food! Oats helps with milk production, so this granola recipe is a winner for me because I’ve been chowing down on so much granola these days. The crockpot is an easier clean up than when baking granola with regular pans. I adapted this recipe from a friend’s cookbook–feel free to switch out the nuts and seeds to what you like.

Continue reading