taking stock

by melissakiefer

on shopping trips, my mom always had my sister and i take stock of the items we got that day. it was always my favorite part of the trip, that late night car drive home that we spent remembering and recalling the good deals we searched for and the special items we couldn’t wait to wear. i believe we were made more grateful because of the conscious act of remembering and reflecting.
 at memorial, students told me their roses and thorns. the roses were another way of taking stock of all the blessings. the praises amongst the requests. the ultimate good that came from the ugly-beautiful. and our eyes were opened. we were made more grateful.
this currently/joy dare section of my blog may seem silly and insignificant, but it’s my way of remembering. and savoring. taking stock of the days.

oregon soap shoppe deliveries
flower drying racks
making gift baskets
my new wristlet! and as always, the whole Anne Made collection
Studio B salon…and feeling okay about getting the blonde highlights again. so something must be forgiven. healed.
nice doctors
old cds students have made for me….even still, they bless me so much (especially on long roadtrips home)
fire pit nights
return of fall television
Josh and Jovie walks
a husband who truly takes care of me
all of these whispers of fall…the breeze, the festivals, the pumpkins
my new bed at my parents’ house
every single student who gave me a hug in the hallway and bombarded me with love
homeroom shouts of “Mama, mama, mama’s here.”
Lexi…my second favorite dog in the whole world
Beth and K
the way it feels to write
a girl i tutor. the questions she asks me. the progress she makes. how our souls are made out of the same stuff. the way she teaches me, too.
“you make my demons go away.”
“i need you. you know me. i just want to talk to my sister.”
just holding my baby niece. my arms feel empty when she’s not in them.
all the beauty. eyes to see it.
my new comfy UE Alumni shirt. just the fact i was able to go there. when i attended, people on campus always asked me why i smiled so much. “because i’m here,” i’d answer. “because i get to be here.” ❤
my framed map of Maine made by my friend who loves greater than anyone i know
the coolest, coziest coffee mugs
girly salads and expresso cupcakes (ohmylands)
people who know me–know all the inside stuff
tailgate food
starbucks blonde roast
my favorite surprise of the whole visit….when Erin Case walked into the kitchen!
the fact that i’m somehow lucky enough to still be in touch with mik. and that she made time to come see me.completely adore her.
my second favorite surprise….seeing all of my former mhs students-turned ue students gathered at my alma mater (special thanks to a favorite student who organized it all). they took time on a friday afternoon to see little ol’ me. and one of my favorite professors stood there in the circle, offering me his traditional kiss on the cheek. telling me how we passed on the torch. he taught me. i became a teacher. i taught students. now my students are becoming teachers. full circle. the taught begins to teach. a full, beautiful circle of learning.
the LPCC worship band
oh the hugs!
Frost poetry
Sarah and Jennifer
new friends from old UE…relationships that produce new introductions….ue continues to bless me
newburgh’s view of the river
fun games
a special friend who’s getting married! so excited that it’s her turn, her time.
reuniting with friends, with students, with the husband
coffee cottage.
seeing Jess
the encouragement you all give me about writing and this blog.
porch talks
hold me, surround me cries. group hug cries. good, necessary cries.

this overwhelming violent hurricane-love that always leaves me shaken. tossed. i’m still tired from the whirlwind of home. still recovering from the bombardment. the force of that type of love. taking stock of all i’ve lost in the storm. still repairing holes and damage. still in awe of the fact that i no longer give to them….and they continue to give to me. i will say thank you more for all of the precious people and places. for friends of all kinds and ages. and i hope that soon more words will come. so many words i don’t know how to say. but when more words come, i’ll continue…taking stock.