Trees of Transition

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


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Five Actions that Help Process Grief

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The top photo is of my Dad and I in 2007 after a 5k I had run with friends. The bottom photo is at my sister’s wedding in 2013.

The transition of grief is mysterious to me. Last week I was happily driving to Bible study, then a Classical song came on the radio, which reminded me of hearing a similar piece with my Dad (who passed away last summer), and there I was –crying away. The memory of my Dad and I at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra also made me smile as I recalled how we had gotten a chocolate bar during intermission, and Dad went on to finish it during the next part of the concert—crinkly foil and all! It drove me nuts, but that is just how Dad was: he wanted to do what he wanted to do. I am thankful for his example of fearlessness and savoring the moment. Continue reading

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My Last Time with My Dad /// Thoughts about his Funeral

Dad holding me when I was just a day old!

One of the most comforting words shared with me during this time of grieving for my Dad was, “Your Dad was the first man who held you on his arms and said, ‘I love you.’ ” This first photo is the first photo I have of my Dad holding me. It is so comforting that Dad got to hold my son as well as me.

On June 6th, my son and I went to see my dad. He was dressed in a nice blue shirt and was sitting in his wheelchair in the living room with a lot of other folks who were dozing and quiet. He seemed sleepy, but he perked up when he saw us. His eyes crinkled into a smile and he knew who we were. I gave him a hug and then got Joel out of his car seat, and then Dad reached out to hold Joel!

Dad smiled at Joel And Joel smiled back. Dad held him for about five minutes until his arms got tired (Joel weighs around 25 lb. already), and then he handed him back.

Dad holding Joel 36 years later.

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Memories of Sherpa

This is when our son first met Sherpa on March 20th with his Aunt. 

Sherpa, my brother and sister-in-law’s golden retriever, brought sunshine to the room (plus a lot of woofs!) She loved to greet anyone who came into the door with great barks and happy commotion—her joy of seeing you made you feel even more welcome.

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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


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The Transition of Spring

A few weeks ago my sister and I, with our kids, explored a botanical garden in Illinois, and here are a few of the first flowers blooming there! The weather was nice and warm (I didn’t bring a sweater for myself), but then part way through our visit, the wind changed, and the temperature Continue reading


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When Do You Throw Away Old Journals?

You should only keep things that you want to enjoy and remember, right?  I learned this through a few years ago a family member paid me to read their old journals and pull out interesting tidbits about their life, then throw the journals away. I appreciated the money, but the emotional toll it took was not worth it. I read things I hadn’t wanted to read; some things should be written down and then THROWN AWAY! In light of that experience, it helped me to think about letting go of a bunch of old journals I had been keeping.

Well, for the past ten years with multiple moves, I kept lugging around these boxes of journals that I had written from age 13 to 23 while I was in junior high, high school, and college.  My husband encouraged me to scan the journals and then throw the hard copies away…when he first said that, I said, “No!” So I kept moving around those boxes a couple more years. We had space in the crawl space, so why not keep them…even though I didn’t want to read them…

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We are Moving to the Twin Cities!

A year ago my husband and I prayed that if God wanted us to move to Minnesota, He would open the doors very clearly and help Stephen get a job easily. A few weeks later in 2017 we found out we were pregnant, so my response was, “We are NOT moving! I have nesting to do…” I thought God didn’t answer that prayer or just said, “No.”… Continue reading