The past two weeks have been anything but normal for our family.

My unexpected fall followed by two weeks of  intense writing at Morehead State have kept me away from home most of my waking hours.

On top of all of this we have juggled Olivia’s coming and going from weeks at CIY, church camp, and now a mission trip to the Dominican Republic with Tim.

So many mornings I’ve started to blog and then had either a technical issue or some type of setback here at the house, so my writing time at home has not been near as meaningful as my writing time at MSU.

I did spend some time yesterday reading part of the manual that explains my new blog site, and I figured out my password issue!! YAY!!

So, I determined that this morning I was going to write a post NO MATTER WHAT!

I have so much on my mind, so much I’d like to say, but I think I’ll share something I wrote this week because I feel such a burden for moms with young children and the reality of how busy life can get and yet how quickly time can fly by.

I’m hoping that in reading these words, some mom will hold her child a little closer, leave the toys out a little longer, or find a reason to celebrate today just because it is TODAY!

And I’m hoping that other moms like me who are facing an empty nest will embrace the next season of life with beauty and grace hanging on to all the can but letting go of all they should so that their baby birds can fly high and happy and beautifully into this great big amazing world!

Here was our writing task:

Choose one item from the quilt and begin writing.

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In the midst of family photographs, old jewelry, random household knickknacks, and other miscellaneous things brought by writing project students, I spotted one lone feather.

As I looked at the feather, I thought of the bird that had flown away leaving this as its only memory.

I thought of the mommy bird who may have found this feather and from that thought,

I wrote this story:

It caught my eye as I walked by – one lone feather trapped in the twigs of an empty nest.

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Gently moving with the breeze, it seemed to flutter as if longing to fly away like the bird who had once called this nest his home.

Some days my house feels just like this empty nest – barren of life yet filled with lone feathers dancing in the breeze of my movement, reminding me of what once was.

A random Lego in a drawer calls me back to the days of four young sons building new worlds in the middle of our living room.  I grimace as I recall the pain of my bare foot coming down on one of these hard blocks; and I realize that sharp pain doesn’t hold a candle to the ache in my heart caused by this one stray block today.

An action figure tucked under a dish towel in my kitchen drawer.   Chipped paint on his arms and legs becoming the scars from many under-the-table battles.  I lift him out of the drawer slowly not wanting to shake away any lasting memories he may hold.  Staring into his expressionless eyes, tears begin to fill my own.  Who hid you here?  Who sent you in search of a villain and was then called away to another place, another season?  

A Happy Meal toy randomly stored with my office supplies.  Was I happy when I picked you up and stuck you in this drawer or was I frantically cleaning for the hundredth time, picking up every loose object I could find around the house, hiding it in hopes that unexpected company might believe I held my life together much better than I really did.

Would the momma bird come back and find the lone feather?

If so, would she sit and sulk over what once filled her nest with chirping and joy or would she pry the feather loose with her aged beak and let it go too?

I’d like to know.

I’d really like to know.

Be thankful today for every stray Lego, every misplaced action figure, and every random Happy meal toy spread throughout your home.

Be thankful today for every lone feather in your nest.