Spring in the Garden

Practising my manual controls on the camera and enjoying the flowers in our garden.

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It would seem that the tree at our front door is a lilac tree.

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Looking into the heart of a tulip. My favourite flower.

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I think it’s neat that we have a magnolia tree but I also kind of don’t like magnolias. They seem overly gaudy to me.

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And just to make me feel like I really am in the Garden of Eden, I saw a snake. It was a big one – I tried to get a picture but it slithered away before I could snap one.IMG_0884

Inside a willow tree.

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And just because…an adorable sleepy puppy.

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Puppy Envy

Some girls have baby-envy. Some young couples, when they’re out and about, check out babies and toddlers and talk about when they’ll have their own.

I have puppy envy. Peter and I point out other people’s dogs to each other and discuss the day when we’ll have our own dog. It’s close but it’s not quite here. We both had dogs as kids and have always known a dog would eventually be a part of our family. For now though, we make do with a dog as part of our extended family.

Last night we met Bella, Peter’s parents’ new puppy.

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How fricking cute is she? Bella is a Springer Spaniel/Chocolate Lab cross (aka: a Labradinger).

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Look how happy I am to be near a dog!

And then she fell asleep.

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Good Morning

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A cool, quiet morning. The weekend brought us rain, hail, lightning, and an all-night power outage. The sun showed its sheepish face yesterday and looks like it might hang around for a few more days.

I am enjoying my beautifully normal life and a day off.

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A Walk at Low Tide

Another sign of spring around here? Low tide. And I mean looowww tide. A tide so low I could practically walk to the general store from our house (which is located across the bay from us).

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It gives us a much larger front yard to explore.

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And underwater treasures to be discovered…

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The rocky island in the middle of the bay (frequented by ducks and gulls) is reachable during low tide. Unfortunately, it’s covered with bird poop and fish guts and it’s the worst-smelling place in the world.

View’s pretty though.

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Also at low tide:

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Crabs under every rock you flip over! And we have young neighbours you like to flip over those rocks! We disrupted a few crab parties.

What Easter Looked Like

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Porpoises chasing a school of fish past the house.

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As we were getting ready for church Sunday morning I hear my brother-in-law yelling, “Porpoises! There’s porpoises out front!” and we all rushed to the front windows. (Yes, we live in the same town as my in-laws and yes, we stayed the weekend with them for an Easter sleepover!)

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Sunday morning:

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Sunday afternoon at the beach:

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Sunday evening

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He Has Risen

“Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen.”

Luke 24:5

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Easter. I love this holiday. I love the chocolate and the flowers and the sunshine. But I love it most because this weekend is central to what I believe, central to the faith that I build my life around. This is the day we celebrate the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus, the sacrifice that saves us.

Last week I learnt of the death of someone I’ve known for almost twenty years. A wonderful Christian woman who there wasn’t a bad thing to say about. A woman well-loved, surrounded by people who wanted to spend many more years with her. It seems so unfair. As I went through the week and sat in a church service on Good Friday, it didn’t feel like death had been defeated.

Our pastor read out to us, in that Good Friday service, the final words that Jesus spoke before He died on the cross. One of those statements was to the thief who was crucified next to Him.

He said, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43)

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I know that this woman, who once made me chocolate cupcakes shaped like swans, is in Paradise with Jesus today. Right this minute.

And while we grieve here and now, our sorrow is temporary. In this way, death has not won. Death has not separated us from our Lord.

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For a weekend each year, we are close to death. To that ultimate and inconceivable sacrifice that Jesus made for us. I understand it and yet I don’t. This Easter, I feel an extra compassion for Mary Magdalene, who found the tomb empty and wept.

But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him.”

When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus.

Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?”

Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away.”

Jesus said to her, “Mary!”

She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher.

John 20:11-16

Mary wept for the death of her friend and teacher. She wept because, like each of us when faced with death, we do not understand. We mourn our loss and we see only a terrible finality where, in fact, something wonderful has begun.

We linger among the dead when we are actually looking for those who are alive again.

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God proves His love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.

Romans 5:8